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Is this actionable...NOW!

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  • Is this actionable...NOW!

    I've had a bit of an epiphany over the last week. The only way GTD makes sense is if you ask yourself, about all of your inputs, "is this actionable now?" 'Now' is the key word. I believe this is what David Allen is getting at with the question "is this actionable?" But that question is a bit misleading because, yes, there are a lot of things that it is possible to take action on. But the question is: are you going to commit to taking action now? This applies to all the 'horizons of focus'. If not actionable then they need to go to someday/maybe or to the tickler.

    This may seem obvious to some. For others, it may explain why they have too many projects, goals or actions. After all, you can't do everything all at once. In essence, GTD is a system of action. If you can't take action on it, then it doesn't really belong in the system (at least in the active part of it.)


  • #2
    Originally posted by ero213 View Post
    If you can't take action on it, then it doesn't really belong in the system (at least in the active part of it.)
    Good post. Things that are not actionble *now* definitely belong in your system, but in an "incubation" container (e.g. tickler or Someday/Maybe). Someday/Maybe is not just for blue sky or dream projects; it's also for things that you can't commit to now but definitely will in the future.


    • #3
      With my tickle file, I use a modified version of David Allen's rule for calendars.
      If the only reason I'm saving an action for later is that I don't have time to
      do it now, I don't put it in the tickle file. It goes somewhere else, maybe "someday/maybe".

      The major benefit of this for me is that the tickle file is relatively fun to use and not
      so much like a burden.

      There are a lot of actions that are doable now, but that I'm not doing because
      I can only do one action at a time. Even most of the "someday/maybes" are
      doable now.


      • #4
        Great post - helpful insight!


        • #5
          Thanks, definitely helpful. I think GTD is like that for everyone, it begins to make more sense the more you try to implement it. It's full of little epiphanies like that where you understand what David Allen means by certain things in the book when they start to make sense to you personally.