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Where to store @action @calls etc lists and agendas? (paper based, location?)

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  • Where to store @action @calls etc lists and agendas? (paper based, location?)

    I found that I'm very visual and that I best remember things if I have specific locations for them.
    One big binder with all the lists (@calls, @net etc) and agendas didn't really work for me. (You close it and they 'disappear' lol) Even similarly-looking folders of different colors didn't quite work. (Okay for filing, not for reminder for actions.)

    I found it best to have my @calls eco in a book on organic gardening! Yikes! (I could easily remember it was @calls and what I was supposed to do with it. If it was on a chair and visually accessible.)
    Trouble is I had to give the book back to its rightful owner (Mum).

    I now have a pile of papers all over two rooms again, and while GTD has been tremendously helpful, and I know a weekly review is in order, I'm wondering if there's a sneaky smart way to do this on purpose? (Visually coding things with regard to location as well?)

    Does anyone have specific locations and special-looking folders or books for specific purposes/contexts? Any ideas how to do this?
    (I know @calls could go by the phone, thing is I make phone calls in 3 different locations too.)

    Any suggestions?

  • #2
    I use desktop file racks for this purpose. They hold the file folders upright and in sight, which seems to work for me.


    • #3
      Really big post-its


      • #4
        I'm afraid I am going to tell you that you were on the right track having one big binder. You need to be able to take everything with you and be able to scan all of your lists whenever you have time.

        Here is the thing that hadn't happened for you yet

        "Scanning the lists hadn't become a habit yet"

        I am working GTDing my wife right now, and she is about 45% of the way into having the list scanning habit

        Try the binder thing again and make an effort to scan the lists several times per day. It will change the way you look at GTD

        J.D. Iles "paper-ninja"
        Hyatt's All Things Creative

        Equipment and Software / Sales and Training
        On-Line Training Coordinator

        direct line or text: (603) 348-7658
        voice: (800) 234-9288 ext. 862
        fax: (603) 962-8522
        PO Box 299
        Lincoln NH 03251


        • #5
          I agree about keeping them in one place. You only need to form one habit....check your binder. Set an alarm if you have to intially, but find a way to remind yourself to check your binder often, preferably whenever your context changes.

          Get up in the morning - check your binder for an overview and plan
          Going out the door in the morning - check your binder for errands (if you have time)
          Get to work - check your binder for things that can only be done at work
          Leave work to go home - check your binder for errands
          Walk in the door at home - check your binder for what needs to be done or can be done before dinner.

          If you notice, the general idea is to check your binder! A few weeks of doing that will form a great habit for you.

          I use a pda and have everything on it. Whenever I find a free minute, my pda instantly pops into my head because I know that I have no idea what I need to do unless I look at it!


          • #6
            Hey guys! Thanks!

            No, it hasn't become a habit yet! You are right!

            Furthermore, I hated the damn lists, lol! And continued to ignore them!

            So.. what did I do? After analyzing the situation as above, I came up with this:

            Being eco and into recycling and such, I recycled my old greeting cards that I got from my friends, and put my @calls agendas into cards, according to card motif (eg card with flowers for a @calls agenda on the topic of honey flowers) So now I had a happy card with a pretty pic inspiring me to go call someone that I put off calling! Also, it's immediately identifiable if I forget it on the table or such.
            I did put all my @calls agendas into one folder for easier carrying around, as you all said.
            I mostly work from home, but from different rooms/offices.

            I now put my @contexts and some active parts of projects into greeting cards too (just today) and will see if it works! (Or if I have to come up with something else for that?!)
            It was hopeless in the binder, the lists completely 'diasppeared' and I didn't update them!

            As I'm very visual/kinaesthetic, we'll see if this now works!


            • #7
              Layla, ultimately the best method is what works for you!


              • #8
                lol, thanks! I guess it's true!

                I realized I have now too many tiny card-folders, so might need to tweak that a little too.

                Realized my 'action lists' were really 'maybe later' or 'to journal' or 'maybe-project' lists or at times blobs, so of course I avoided them.

                For some projects (or AoFs) I need 'active' and 'archive' folder/s.

                I think these are the sort of things that David Allen says 'either ... or' and basically you have to wing it until you find something that really works!
                I wonder if anyone has done some sort of analysis, eg 'this works for visual or kinaesthetic people, this works for...'?