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has the system helped you?

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  • has the system helped you?

    I am thinking of using GTD but would like to hear what other people have to say...specifically, I guesss I'm looking for success stories about how the system has helped. Doesn't have to be earth shattering stuff-- just want to know that it's working for some people.

    Thanks in advance!

  • #2

    I'm not one who can point to dramatic success in my life due to GTD. I still dont get enough done. GTD doesnt cure laziness!

    I love knowing what goes where. GTD has taught me to do that much better than I ever did in the past. It is definitely the best system I've found for processing work (notice I didnt say time management)

    The only drawback is the huge lists that developed in my case. Still hard to manage those and be clear about what to do next.

    You have to try it!


    • #3
      Re: has the system helped you?

      Dear interested-
      the GTD system can make a big difference. I have tried a lot of different things over the last decade or so. GTD really works for me. Give it a try. I think you will be glad you did. I will tell you a secret: GTD is less work than any other "system" and less work than not having a system too.


      • #4
        I’ve been using GTD for a couple of months (at home and at work, parallel systems) and find that two aspects of this method have made the most difference for me:

        1. It’s a great help to have one inbox where I can toss “stuff” and know that I’ll take care of it.

        2. When I go to the inbox, I go into processing mode. Just having a clear idea of what that means (and does not mean) is extremely helpful.

        In my brief experience these two aspects of GTD, more than any others, are at the heart of closing all the open loops that otherwise will be buzzing around in your head. Highly recommended.


        • #5
          Re: Has this system helped you

          GTD has helped me immensely.

          I think that one of the key things that I really like about this system is that David Allen doesn't overpromise and underdeliver on what is acheivable with it. I've been using it for about 2 years. I've fluctuated from digital to paper back to digital (Sony Clie). I'd also dropped GTD and attempted to go back to FranklinCovey (which I had used for around 12 years). That was a real eye opener on just how simply effective GTD is. No special planners to buy and no guilt associated by missing a day (I was using a daily planner, switched to weekly with similarly bad results).

          One of GTD's more powerful features is that you can make it as simple or as complex as you desire. You can make your day to day activity very streamlined or very regimented. And both approaches can work quite effectively for different users. I like to keep things very simple (probably as a reaction against the overly structured Franklin method). I use just the plain apps that came with my Clie (with the exception of DateBk5). When I was doing GTD with paper, I followed David's advice on setting up a paper planner and acheived very good results also.

          A few key items that have helped me to implement Getting Things Done:

          Bought the book
          Organized my workspace and materials to follow David's guidelines
          Try to capture everything that enters my head and record it appropriately
          Do the Weekly Review consistently

          Good luck!!


          • #6
            GTD feedback

            Hi Interested and all.....

            I am also curious as to your collective experiences in utilzing the GTD system.

            As an 'old' Stephen Covey/Quadrant II adherant since 1994 I have found that the 'nuts and bolts' of my daily work and personal activity are botlenecking my top down/vision driven approach to personal planning.

            Like all of you who are 'busy' too (I work as an Education Co-ordinator for a provincal wide health care organization, have my own safety training company, compete as a bodybuilder, am married to a soccer playing dynamo, and we have three very active kids), GTD seems to make sense in breaking that logjam but I have some application questions which I will post at my next coffee break!

            Great summary, d-brunett!

            Thanks all



            • #7
              The System Works -if I work the System

              The system is like basic training - but the only drawback is that I have to be my own drill sergeant. I am not about to afford having David Allen stop over to help me clean up my mess - I must clean up my mess. I have an inbox in my truck, in my backpack, @home & @work. It's up to me to consciously use the 'Rosetta Stone' InBox diagram & to conduct myself with the internal dialogue that is required to walk the next piece of stuff through the system. I have not perfected my performance of the system. But for me, I have gained a better awareness of my shortcomings and know what I need to do to rid of the GSA 'gnawing sense of anxiety' or at least to start feeling good about what I am not doing!


              • #8
                See my GTD at DisneyWorld post below.


                • #9
                  Definitely helped!

                  I am in the beginning stages of implementation, so I can't say I've seen earth-shattering changes yet, but there are number of things that have been made noticably (and thankfully) easier. For example, I am responsible for an annual event attended by about 10,000 people. This year, having implemented GTD, I know (1) exactly what I'm not doing (2) that it's OK if I don't do it immediately (3) that I won't forget to do it and (4) who is taking care of the stuff I'm not doing. In years past I've just been nervous and anxious about the whole thing and just hoped it turned out for the best. I also have a boss (like many do, I'm sure) who is in the habit of strolling into my office and dropping projects on my desk regardless of what's already there, and I finally feel like I *might* be able to manage that. The best thing for me was "getting" the two minute rule. It's saved me countless hours so far.


                  • #10
                    Do you need to GTD?

                    Do you need to "do" gtd?

                    Part of putting this information out to the masses makes it necessary to "generalize."

                    If you're getting things done, not dropping balls, and making productive use of small windows of time (so you can get on to what you want to do) then don't change!

                    For the most part, the people who are drawn to this stuff are those looking to shave "time" off of their work-day. For example, sitting next to a man on the plane recently, I noticed a two-fingered, hunt and peck typing method in place. (Now, this is not "only" GTD material...)

                    I could only wonder, "If he typed at 30 words a minute, would he be able to leave the office a half hour earlier?"

                    NOW, some people don't WANT to leave the office earlier! Others, like Tiger Woods looking for that next level of his golf game, are looking for the one computer shortcut, or the one filing system, that one idea that will make their day easier.

                    So, bottom line to all of this: Do what works to keep you going. For folks who don't miss-agree (say they'll do something and then "forget"), for folks who talk positively to themselves, for people who are already "there" whereever there is, this course is going to be a nice, icing on the cake.

                    For others, the ideas presented here are going to be radical solutions to their most pressing problems.

                    I'm drafting an essay for our website. It's called "Small Windows of Time." I've had too many people call us and say, "Using GTD, I can now take advantage of the small windows of time. This encourages me, gives me more energy, and lets me get home earlier in the day."


                    • #11
                      has teh system helped you?

                      GtD is like Alka-seltzer, a muscle and fine wine.

                      It can give you instant relief, gets stronger with use and better with the passage of time.

                      A planned day is an ice ballet but my real world is a hockey game.