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getting set up, anyone care to share their wisdom?

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  • getting set up, anyone care to share their wisdom?

    I've had the book for years and have been on this forum in the past but never felt like I had the system figured out so that it worked and I achieved that water mind goal. Well I'm back. Here is my deal and I'd love to hear what the more experienced (or perhaps someone with similar temperament and lifestyle to me) have to say.
    1. I like paper.
    2. If something is already working as a closed loop, don't fix it. (the motor hums just fine on my transcription business and Ihave a capture and routine for paying bills that works great (Basket for Bills as they arrive, pay online coincident with Husband's first payday of month..some on autopay. All that are ever needed for them is a jot on the calendar for things I need to remember.
    Rolodex for addresses

    My system needs:
    A project list with all my "stuff" including all my art ideas ideas, goals projects.
    Contexts, which so far I believe would be @phone, @ <a time zone> @out & about (errands/shopping), @desk.
    A someday list for future things to consider.
    Calendar can be used for ticklers?

    Note, The kind of calendar I like is the is the simple full month kind. I've tried the planner kind and the appointment kind, but I just do best with the full month, including weekends, with squares to write in.

    I actually have a a Planner Pad for my calendar, but I only use the month view of the calendar and sometimes jot something in the notes. The calendar you get at Christmas from your insurance guy would work fine for me as long as there were squares to write in.

    Always have project list/ next actions of the day, calendar and pen with me.

    This is my start, I'm hopeful that this time I can keep my reviews going and capture all my thoughts and just get that peace and productivity. I'm grateful in advance for your comments.
    Last edited by Juno; 08-11-2011, 09:23 PM.

  • #2
    Hello Juno and welcome!

    Sounds like you have a great starter system for tracking your projects and next actions.

    Calendar can be used for ticklers?
    Absolutely. I don't use a 43 folder tickler system. I use my calendar and a waiting for folder.

    Full month calendar is fine too, as long as you have enough room for the 3 things that go on your calendar:
    -time specific actions
    -day specific actions
    -day specific information

    This free article in our store might give you some more ideas for setup options.

    The Weekly Reviews are like the glue that will keep your system together. The sooner you can make that a habit, the sooner you will reap the benefits of what GTD is all about.

    Good luck!


    • #3
      Thanks very much for the feedback! I really appreciate it. I did download the paper planner information.

      I agree the key will be review, and also always remembering to have my system with me. I need mindfulness on both of those.

      I have some projects in which I work better with routine next actions rather than micromanaging each specific NA. For example, clean/organize/straighten Studio. A well-used art studio is messy and the setup changes all the time. I've found that if I take care of "5 things" every time (OK most times) I go past my work space, that really helps, and it seems to more or less straighten itself. I can see myself having some projects on the top of my list that I handle in that manner a good bit of the time.

      In the past I was definitely trying to manage everything and not letting the stuff that was already working just fine keep on going as it iwas. It's early but I'm feeling more centered already. Good stuff.
      Last edited by Juno; 08-11-2011, 09:28 PM.


      • #4
        I think I was at about the same stage you were when I got serious about hammering out the higher altitudes; you might find it helpful to start working up from 20K or so.



        • #5
          As a user of a paper/digital hybrid system I would highly recommend 5x7 notecards for your lists. They are portable--you can put them in a pocket, yet you can lay them all out in front of you if need be. Also, the heavier weight of the paper helps keep them from getting mixed in with other papers.

          I would also highly recommend that you set up some kind of tickler file separate from your calendar. I use a digital tickler via Remember the Milk. This way I receive email reminders to activate projects/actions and it keeps my calendar free of clutter.


          • #6
            Hi Juno,

            Your set up sounds pretty good. I also work GTD on paper and use the following:

            For my office I have 3 ruled pads - one for NAs, one for WFs and one for projects, Someday/Maybe and longer term WFs (so I don't have to keep rewriting them!)

            For home and as a link between office and home I use a filofax which I always carry.

            I would wholeheartedly agree with Kelly that the WR is a vital piece of the puzzle to keep your system ticking and your productivity high. I've found that the more habitual it becomes, the better your system feels, both for ease of use and keeping your head clear and focussed.

            Good luck!