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more stressed now then before :)

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  • more stressed now then before :)

    Has anyone else felt this? I spend so much time worrying that I missed something during my initial "input" phase. I think I got all mu outstanding info into the system, but I am not sure so now I am worrying about that.

    What words of wisdom can you guys give me?

    I do like the organization of GTD and I totally buy into the general concept.


  • #2
    Why are you so worried, Nick?

    What are you afraid will happen? Worst-case scenario?

    If you remember something, write it down and process it.



    • #3
      Re: more stressed now then before

      Originally posted by nickgust
      I spend so much time worrying that I missed something during my initial "input" phase. I think I got all mu outstanding info into the system, but I am not sure so now I am worrying about that.
      If you forgot about something it is lost regardless of using GTD or not. I hope that - by implementing GTD - you did not lose your memory (amnesia). By writing everything down you haven't purged everything out of your brain.

      GTD will allow you to avoid (or at least reduce) such worries in the future.

      The glass is partially full - not partially empty.



      • #4

        If you forgot something that is important (a) it will either come back to you (like: must subscribe to David Allen's newsletter), because you thought of it or someone reminded you. Then you write it down and process it. Or (b) you do not think of it anymore and nobody reminds you. In that case, it was probably not that important.

        If you have an idea, write it down and process regularly. When I start feeling uncomfortable at work and unsure, it ussually means that I am behind in processing my notes. There is only one way to solve this: take the notebook and process what is in there.



        • #5
          Getting Things Done is a guy named Vito who checks everyone at the door. If you don't trust Vito, you're going to be nervous every time someone walks in.

          It's natural to be stressed when you're changing your routine.

          The point isn't to get everything on your first day, your first sweep. The point is that every time you come across, or think of something from now on, it goes in to the system.


          • #6

            It might be psychological scar tissue left over from a habit of constantly worrying.

            Also, David points out that when you get the ground level stuff in your life embedded in a trusted system, your mind naturally rises to some of the bigger questions in your life – about your job and where you think it will be in 18 months time for example.

            The scar tissue will heal and the worrying habit will go away as your trust in your system grows; also, take this great opportunity to start thinking about your general life directions and life balance to address the unease you may be experiencing at higher levels.

            That is one of the major benefits and reasons for GTD.



            • #7
              All 5 phases are important but the 2 critical things I find that I *must* do for peace of mind are:

              1) Have a UCT (Ubiquitous Capture Tool) on me at all times. I think nothing of writing down dozens of ideas a day. Big, small, important, frivolous, pending, future, current, it doesn't matter. If it's something I've got my attention on for more than a few seconds, into the UCT it goes. When it comes time to process them (minutes, hours or days later) I can decide then whether or not it's really important and if so, where to put it in the system. In my opinion, this is the critical step for having a 'mind like water'. When something starts nagging at me it just takes a couple seconds to whip out the UCT, jot down a note and be done with it. From that point on it's 'In the system' and I can relax and concentrate on the work (or play) at hand.

              2) Do the weekly review to close those nagging, open loops. Don't forget, part of the weekly review is an 'empty your head' brain dump. Periodically, I like to use trigger lists to make sure that this brainstorm session is thorough. In your case, don't even wait for the weekly review. Get some trigger lists and start working them.

              Reducing the number of inboxes has helped me a lot, too. Knowing that all the stuff you need to process is right in front of you makes it easier to know when you're really and truly finished.


              • #8
                Are you looking at your lists as often as you need to? To get rid of the anxiety, it's not enough to write everything down. It needs to be where you'll see it in the appropriate context; and, more importantly, you need to have the habit of looking at your lists on a regular basis. Otherwise, written down or not, you're still keeping stuff in your head.

                Once you make a habit of looking at your @Computer list whenver you're at a computer, your brain will know there's a trusted system in place -- and only then will it let go of your open loops. You can't fool yourself on this one: your brain will continue to manage your unfinished business until it knows there's a better system to manage it than psychic RAM.

                Personally I've found that when it comes to reviewing project and action lists, it's better to risk overdoing it at the beginning. Make it a point to look at your action list whenever you change contexts.