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  • @anywhere and @calls contexts

    Hi

    I always carry my phone with me, I therefore figure I could put all my call actions in my @anywhere context and get rid of the @calls context.

    Has anyone else done this?

    George

  • #2
    Iv read similar debates on this site before. One common reply is that its useful to bunch together actions of a similar type because you kind of get in a groove doing a certain type of action. So if you have to make calls, get a drink put your best foot forward and run off 10 calls in a row, then theyre done.

    Since I have email and phone and word processing at home, work and on the move with my smartphone + laptop, 90% of my work should be @anywhere. But since its not helpful to have one list with 200 actions on it I break it down a little more.

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    • #3
      @anywhere means @anywhere.

      Originally posted by iamjud View Post
      I always carry my phone with me, I therefore figure I could put all my call actions in my @anywhere context and get rid of the @calls context.
      @anywhere = @boss OR @meeting-with-client OR @errands OR @lunch-with-my-wife OR @home OR ...

      I don't think I should make calls in any of the above mentioned contexts.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by TesTeq View Post
        @anywhere = @boss OR @meeting-with-client OR @errands OR @lunch-with-my-wife OR @home OR ...

        I don't think I should make calls in any of the above mentioned contexts.
        Maybe you shouldn't, but (if like me you have your mobile with you most of the time) you COULD. Even if you have a calls context you would be in this situation anyway. You could be @meeting-with-client and @calls because you've got you phone in your pocket.

        I see how it might be useful to have a calls context if you have to regularly make 10+ phone calls a day (I don't have to myself).

        Comment


        • #5
          Personally I like to keep them seperate because my lists are long enough that I might miss something otherwise. That being said, I think that as long as you are not @romantic dinner you should be alright.

          Comment


          • #6
            Focusing on the client needs to provide him the best solution.

            Originally posted by iamjud View Post
            You could be @meeting-with-client and @calls because you've got you phone in your pocket.
            When I'm at the meeting with my client I'm turning off my mobile phone because the purpose of the meeting is to focus on the client needs to provide him the best solution. For me it would be inappropriate to make calls during the time reserved for my boss, client, wife etc.

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            • #7
              I understand your issue and often feel the same as I have my iPhone with me so can make calls anywhere. Same applies for email these days, and I do a lot of text messaging.

              I've been toying with the idea of changing my @calls context to @contact which would mean contacting a person via any method, leaving me to choose how I do it given current circumstances, e.g. phone, email, text, even face-to-face if I happen to be close by (say with internal office colleagues).

              Might give this a try.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by PeterW View Post
                I've been toying with the idea of changing my @calls context to @contact which would mean contacting a person via any method, leaving me to choose how I do it given current circumstances, e.g. phone, email, text, even face-to-face if I happen to be close by (say with internal office colleagues).
                I wouldn't recommend this because thinking would be required each time you look at the list. You should be doing your thinking when you decide your next action, not while you in the war zone. There you have no time to think; you need to have already thought.

                Even if you carry around your phone 99% of the time I still think you should have an @Calls context. This context means I need a phone--any phone--to complete actions on that list. If you don't have your phone or if you're on a plane and can't use that function of your phone you put that list away.

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                • #9
                  @Calls is not @Anywhere

                  You cannot use your phone (to make a call) in flight on a commercial airline. If your phone is broken, or the battery is drained, you cannot make a call and would be restricted by the context.

                  I find @Calls to be a helpful context regardless. I switched to an iPhone a while back and toyed with an @iPhone context instead of @Calls. I found I missed the breakout of phone calls as a separate list.

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                  • #10
                    I'd agree with you in principle and in my last job, I flew somewhere every week so having @calls would make sense. In my current role, I don't fly and aside from a brief weekly meeting, am mostly at my desk, in my car driving to/from work, or at home and always have my iPhone with me. So for me, @contact would probably work. I have not needed to filter my tasks for @calls in the past 12 months since taking up GTD workflow.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by PeterW View Post
                      I'd agree with you in principle and in my last job, I flew somewhere every week so having @calls would make sense. In my current role, I don't fly and aside from a brief weekly meeting, am mostly at my desk, in my car driving to/from work, or at home and always have my iPhone with me. So for me, @contact would probably work. I have not needed to filter my tasks for @calls in the past 12 months since taking up GTD workflow.
                      Im being a bit devils advocate here - but the one caveat for me doing it that way is that when I do the weekly review I tend to mix up how I think I should contact people according to how long since I last spoke to them. See them every day? Email them. Not seen them for 6 weeks? Give them a call and shmooze them a little. I tend to only be able to get that thinking out at the weekly review, rather than the daily decision making.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: @Contact...

                        I did this about a year ago, much as PeterW described, and find it works well for me. I realized that -- at least in the context of my work -- everyone's communication style has been evolving over the last five years or so. I rarely just call anyone as an initiating communications step. Many people that I've had long term phone relationships have gradually migrated to email, and this has become a more effective medium to communicate with them. Sometimes I can use email to schedule a phone call (works much better for me than playing phone tag) and once scheduled, that call goes on my calendar, so it doesn't need to be on a separate @Calls list.

                        I don't find the overhead required to decide how to contact someone onerous in the least; it's much more important for me to have all those contacts corraled together in one place. In fact, it seems a less useful exercise for me, to decide in advance how I want to communicate with someone, since situations are so fluid and may require a different communications medium between when the name goes on the list and when I act on it. I used to waste an inordinate amount of time trying to decide in advance whether to put a name on @Call or @Email, and then realized that it was not a useful step for me, and that the reason I struggled with that decision was that it simply was arbitrary, and not necessary, in my situation. Of course, YMMV.

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                        • #13
                          Calls vs....

                          One alternative would be to use your @agendas for this purpose. @agendas is a a very useful list, especially for those times when you might call, but could email, etc. As one poster pointed out, whether a call or email is best will change over time.

                          My @agendas list is the newest context for me to implement (very well, anyway). I do not have as many meetings as I have several items to bring up to the same person.

                          My @calls list is actually called my @phone list. I, like the OP, have a smartphone, and so the @phone context includes all updates, applications, organization, as well as telephone calls to make. As the @phone relates to calls, the actions usually contain fewer topics to discuss with people I do not deal with regularly.

                          @anywhere could work IF you really have your phone with you as often as you have on clothing. Remember the purpose of the contexts is to separate out items that require special equipment. I don't have a context list for things that require pen and paper because I always carry them. My phone occasionally gets set down.

                          Note that, for a person who relies on his/her phone for GTD, @anywhere could especially apply, because that person wouldn't know even what was on the @anywhere list without the phone.

                          JohnV474

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