Discussion in 'PUBLIC: Discuss the GTD Methodology' started by Booking Vaness, Jan 4, 2019.
Editor's note: Original post mentioned GTD, but was later edited to contain spam.
Buy David Allen's book. Read it. Apply it.
What he said. The book is basically the tutorial.
The book is really all you need, but most people resist at least some aspects at first. In some sense, that’s why there are lots of other resources available. GTD is pretty tool-agnostic, but individual preferences vary widely, which is another reason for lots of online discussion.
I wholeheartedly agree with the above advice. As you begin to make your way, reading the forum discussions will be invaluable.
Read the book again if you've only read it once. Then go get the other 2 books, Making it All Work and Ready for Anything and read them too.
Create your first project: "Decide how I will implement GTD in my life" Follow the natural planning model as you flesh out your needs and desires for a GTD system and then implement it by doing the next actions you have decided are the correct ones.
Remember that GTD is a system of behaviors and workflows not a software package or paper notebook. GTD is a way of approaching how to manage life and is not tied to any given tool. So spend some time learning the process and mind set and workflows and then the right tool will be something you can determine for yourself.
A great supporting tool that I used to implement GTD was to get the GTD Live recording of David Allen doing the seminar. I listened to it non-stop as I put the system in place. It was almost like having David there with me. You can find it in the GTD shop at:
David wrote the book in a way that it walks you through the whole process. So this is maybe the best start. When you’ve finished the book it might be a good idea to have a look at the podcasts and maybe join connect. That is the way I went.
Allow me to join the chorus: start with the Getting Things Done book. That's the foundation. What you read here and in similar forums won't make much sense without that foundation.
But @mcogilvie is right: most people are resistant to at least some of it at first. I found my own preconceived notions got in the way of a full understanding of it, and from what I've seen in these forums I'm far from alone in that. So the forums will be helpful for building on the foundation the book provides.
This will be a process. Be prepared to make mistakes and learn from them. Like anything else in life, it's the only way to learn and succeed.
Finally, I think @Oogiem put it brilliantly when she called GTD "a system of behaviors and workflows not a software package or paper notebook." GTD can be implemented with a myriad of tools, both digital and paper-based. Focus first on understanding the behaviors and practices that make up GTD. Once you understand them it won't be hard to find a tool that suits your preferences.
Congratulations on taking your first steps!
Perhaps you can apply the natural planning model to this question and brainstorm for 15 minutes on what a smooth-running, trusted system would look like and feel like for you? Then as you re-read the book, read it with this question in mind: "in order to do all the black belt behaviors David discusses in the book (capture, clarify, organize, review/reflect, engage), what information and tools will I need to have at hand in order to do each one smoothly and easily?".
Whatever tools you start with do not have to be a life-long commitment. There is no one end-all-be-all tool out there, and the tool that works at one stage in your GTD journey many not work for you later. Expect that you will change tools over time. We have all made changes.
The recommendation I've heard several times is when in doubt, start with paper as it is easy to setup, it gets you practicing the behaviors in a very direct and hands-on manner, and after a few months of use and habit-formation and weekly reviews, you likely will naturally gain more insights about what tools to try.
You may also want to take a new look at the good organization habits you have now and ask yourself why they've stuck and others haven't. Understanding what's working well naturally for you now may provide some insights into what tools and list managers might work better for you as you step into in your GTD journey.
Once you've read the book and learned the fundamentals, focus first on building the habits, not the systems and tools.
First and foremost, build the habit to collect every actionable thought that drops into your mind the moment it happens. Always have a capture tool on or near your person. When you start to apply GTD, you'll experience a flood of actionable thoughts in the most inconvenient places, especially in the car. A digital voice recorder that you can start and stop without taking your eyes off the road helps a lot.
Keep your system as simple as possible at and start with whatever is familiar to you. Don't get caught up in trying a zillion different apps. The more apps you use, the more places you have to look for reminders.
The book Making It All Work by David Allen on page 111 says, "Once you really integrate this clarification process into your life-and work style, you will find yourself comfortable with a wide range of tools that can genuinely work for you. If you haven't applied this process, nothing will seem to serve you very well."
I would work on getting very familiar and experienced with each of the 5 stages of workflow: capture, clarify, organize, review and do. I would also work on making the workflow chart second nature.
Even though I quoted the book Making it All Work, I agree with others that its best to start with the book Getting Things Done.