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Mechanics of weekly review

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  • Mechanics of weekly review

    Need your help! This has probably been beaten to death, but my quick search didn't find the posts that did the beating; so...

    I can't help feeling there's a smarter way to review my project and action lists. Right now, this takes what I think is a ridiculously long time. Maybe the answer is changing my perspective. I have a reasonably complex project (in the formal sense) job; my project list is fairly long, and I've tended to put all my possible next actions on lists, so they're pretty long, too. Maybe I just need to accept it will take longer?

    Then again, maybe it's constraints I find in my work/life. First, I often am not in an environment where I can print, so I'm forced to shuffle back and forth between lists. Second, I'm also out of my office sufficiently that carrying *all* my project support material is not viable, and that kinda knocks out skimming through physical project plans I keep in folders. (I use Shadow for those.) Third, b/c I am in a project intensive environment, I do need detailed plans for many of my projects (thus the frustration w/ being away from the office).

    So, my review takes the form of: "OK, project Alpha (and I regularly exceed 100 projects in the GTD sense). Do I have a next action in play already? I'll check @work, but it could be @call, @computer, or..."

    I've gotta believe there's a better way; but...



  • #2
    Project Review

    I'm pretty new to this so have only just starting working with the system.

    The thought I had was to put the next action down under your project (or at least which list you had captured it on) as well as on the list - a sort of x check. Then you won't have to sort through all your lists to find what your next action was on a project.


    • #3

      For me, linking helps with this problem.

      I use the palm and the palm desktop - thats all. I've figured out a way to make the projects and their related NA's come up together when I look at the category "All". The NA's unrelated to projects go down to the bottom of the list. I see it all in one sweep.

      You have alot of projects. I think you may need to review that list more often than you'd like to in order to make sure you've got things convered.


      • #4
        Seeing it all in one sweep


        What's your trick?



        • #5
          to answer ur question


          I think DM explains his trick in the first message of this thread:




          • #6
            Weely review...piece by piece...


            Here's what I use...


            • #7
              Thanks, Jason.

              I also use that list (adapted as needed). My question, not brilliantly clearly stated, focuses on the review of the project list to make sure there's a moving action for each. When project lists get long (you know the feeling), it's easy to lose lock on whether there's an action already in play for that project. I spend enough time looking for next actions in play that my type-A nature starts to ping a bit. I think the remedy is scoping back the number of next actions in play (if there could be 8 next actions, I might focus on the most important 1, 2, or 3 at the most). That should cut down the time I spend on that step. I also think I need to relax some on that type A thing...



              • #8
                Mechanics of Weekly Review

                I used to add "NA1012" to the end of my project name to indicate I'd set up a Next Action on 10/12...



                • #9
                  Originally posted by Bryan
                  ... review of the project list to make sure there's a moving action for each.
                  In coaching the numbers of clients we've worked with, I continue to see, that weekly reviews need to be done 52 (or even 104) weeks in a row before a sense of trust in the system is achieved.

                  This is not something that will change in one 90-minute review. Give yourself the time and the space to maintain direction during this process. What helped me the most, several years ago, was surrounding myself with 2 other people who decided to "stop the madness." Working 70+ hour weeks and never shutting down was taking its toll. So, the three of us decided to adopt only a couple of the GTD tools. One of them, thankfully, was the weekly review. Now, I can do a 60-minute scan, once a week, that outlines the work at the runway level that needs to happen to move on those projects.

                  It's a process...have fun with it.


                  • #10
                    my "trick"

                    My GTD tool of choice, Life Balance, makes this easy, because my project list is in outline form, with the next actions for the project below each project. (Each next action has a context, and the "to do" view filters by context.)

                    So to review my action lists, I work through the "to do" list in each context. To make sure each project has an action, I flip to the Projects context, and any project without a next action shows up.

                    Hope this helps,