Spanning the globe for insights into human behavior and persuasion.
Today was my first try at David Allen's Getting Things Done--GTD in blog speak. I read about this method of staying on top of projects through Lifehacker
and Steve Rubel
. With work piling up after a week off
and the new job
getting more demanding, I thought it was time to see if GTD could help me.
I haven't read (or even purchased) the book, but took the recommendation of GTD evangelist Merlin Mann (43 Folders blog
) to check out this PDF
and this wiki
. They were enough to inspire me to get started with GTD right away.
Even after one day, it's helped a lot. GTD's first step--getting stuff outside of your head and off your mind--was liberating. No, invigorating. Could it be that I won't have to deal again with that helpless, overwhelmed feeling when deadlines are crashing all around me? Maybe not, but today I felt more in control than I have in months.
I took an hour to just clear out everything I had been thinking about--commitments at home, work, church--and I wrote them all down in an MS Outlook note (which I sync with my Treo
; no, I will not use Merlin's hipster PDA
The stuff that I could do quickly--GTD's guideline says 2 minutes--I did right away. Again, that feeling of control was fantastic. Then I created tasks for everything in Outlook, which, again, I sync religiously.
GTD says to differentiate between projects and one-off tasks. Here's how I did that in Outlook: I created a task for each project, using ALL CAPS to show that it wasn't just a one-off task. Then, I created tasks for all the project steps, beginning each task entry with a one- to two-word label like "Newsletter:" or "White Paper:"
Empowerment feels good.