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Different needs for different NA lists

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  • Different needs for different NA lists

    First, I've only got my system up and running at home. When I tried to implement it before, I tried at home and at work at the same time and it was too overwhelming. My work stuff is not involved for now, so it's home-type things I'm dealing with primarily.

    I'm refining my system. I'm still committed to keeping things (mostly) on paper because it seems to be working better for me, overall. But here's my current dilemma...

    When I switched to paper, I had everything in a 8.5x11 binder. I found that I didn't want to carry it around, but I liked the large size for spread-out-ness and for the easy ability to make forms for my needs, buy standard dividers and such.

    I compromised and kept project level and higher in the binder, but moved my NA lists to a little, old Franklin Covey pocket sized binder. I made tiny little NA/context lists. I couldn't find the hole punch for that size, if I ever had one, so I punched the six holes individually (a pain). Also a pain to cut up, but it was a good size because the binder fit in my purse. I kept a few coupons in the pocket of it, etc.

    I'm finding that it's too cramped. I'm going back to putting my NA/context lists on 8.5x11 paper...for the most part. I'm putting the ones that are at home in there for sure. @Desk, @Outside, @Around the house, and @Waiting For. I've currently got @Calls, @Agendas and @Errands still in the little binder.

    Is that weird to have it split up like that?

    I'm also thinking of moving those into OmniFocus. Again, I was overwhelmed (twice) by trying to get everything EVERYTHING into OmniFocus and getting the recurring things to work 'just so' etc. And I JUST got a nice, shiny new Mac Book Pro, so it's really tempting to fire OF up on it. But I'm afraid I'll get lost in the mire of trying to get things 'just so' again. On the other hand, having those things on my iphone is something I maybe this is an opportune time to try that split.

    Any suggestions?

  • #2
    I couldn't resist. I've put my errands and calls into OF and sync'd my iphone. I just downloaded the software onto my new computer, input my license key, and set up a new file...bare bones... on those two contexts. I quickly remembered why I liked different stores to actually be different I can order actions to my liking.

    It took me way under an hour and I think I'll be happy to have just this part portable.


    • #3
      I've always kept my lists in one system so that I don't get things too scattered but you could give it a try and see what happens...


      • #4
        "I had everything in a 8.5x11 binder. I found that I didn't want to carry it around, but I liked the large size...I compromised and kept project level and higher in the binder, but moved my NA lists to a little, old Franklin Covey pocket sized binder."

        I think this pair of problems is a common one:
        --liking to see certain things large size but not wanting to carry something that large around with you
        --needing to have some things with you at all times.

        My current compromise is to keep with me printed out month at a glance calendar pages, and to keep my next actions/projects in Things on my iPhone.


        • #5
          What about a clipboard?


          • #6
            Originally posted by Brent View Post
            What about a clipboard?
            I actually AM a clipboard person, but not for the purpose I'm talking about. It's still too big. Picture going to the store and not wanting to have to carry around anything extra that wouldn't fit in a purse (not giant) or pocket. I thought of half sheets (FC Classic size), but so far, I'm happy with these in OF.

            I use clipboards for just about everything at work. And when I'm really cranking through things at home, I'll throw a NA list either onto a clipboard or put it into the front of my binder (view binder).


            • #7
              Ah. I use 3x5" cards for @Errands lists.


              • #8
                I sure understand where you're coming from...

                I was a definite paper person, but was constantly split between the great size of the 8.5x11, the "grabability" of a 5x8 notebook, and the "stuff-in-your-pocket"-ness of 3x5 cards.

                I could not brainstorm or mindmap with 3x5 cards. I did not like carrying a clipboard with me into the gas station or to dinner, and I didn't like rewriting everything to different sizes.

                My solution? I finally settled on... a smartphone. It was the only way to carry the volume of information I needed all the time without needing to carry around briefcases and binders everywhere... even my Contacts list was 25 pages long, in 6 pt type.

                However, while I use Outlook for tasks, etc., I often print out my Task list and calendar and grab a clipboard if I have many errands at once.

                A good thing about 8.5x11, even if not on a clipboard, is that it can easily be folded and tucked into a pocket or wallet.

                I still use 3x5 cards for nearly all capture.

                Rewriting is never an issue if I just have to print out a new page or two... take seconds.

                If you definitely needed to stick with all paper, I would recommend a clipboard and a few report binders. The clipboard is for NA lists (which can be folded and tucked into purse, pocket, etc.) and Calendar, with some blank pages to spare. I would then get either several thin report binders or one big honking 3-ring binder for all of my Lists, including Contacts, Projects, etc.

                I would take the big mambo binder with me every time I got in the car. Carry it home, leave it inside. Carry it to work, bring it in. Carry it to the movie theater, store, doctor's office, or restaurant, leave it in the car. That way, it's always accessible if needed but without the bulk.

                I did this by leaving the binder in my briefcase, which would go with me in the car everywhere.