How often do you do your weekly review, really?


What's your average review frequency? Weekly, fortnightly, monthly or ad hoc?

Like many others on here, I love the philosophy and power of GTD but struggle with Weekly Reviews. I tend to review a little bit of the system every few days but don't often nominate a day to do a full, proper David Allen-style weekly review. And I know I should. Just wondering if anyone else finds disciplining themselves to review every week, a real challenge. And for those who find it a doddle, any tips to make it a habit? Particularly interested to hear from those who have struggled in the past but cracked it now (although all stories welcome )


I used to do them infrequently. Maybe once monthly, if that. Now, weekly. It's rare I miss a week.

For me, the key to making it a habit was streamlining the review to fit the amount of time I'm willing to sit still for it. For me, two hours is the maximum. 90 minutes (or less) is even better.

To accomplish this I analyzed what was taking the most time and came up with ways to make those phases of the review more efficient. I used to spend an inordinate amount of time (for me) on the mindsweep, so I set a timer. I now allow a maximum of ten minutes for that phase.

I was also bad about the capture/collect phases, so I'd have a backlog of paper materials, emails, voicemails, etc. that could take me over an hour to get through. I now make sure I clear out my inboxes multiple times daily, and also the night before I do my review (which I do on Sunday mornings).

Now, I actually look forward to my weekly review.

Hope that helps.
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I'd say "ad hoc" with an average frequency of 0.9 times per day.

It is most often triggered by either just having processed a big pile in one of my inboxes or by having crafted a major project plan.


I keep track and my typical time is once every 9 days. I aim for weekly but I tend to fall off at times.


Weekly reviews done each Friday, yet when going on vacation or out of office for a day or two will do a mini view prior so to catch any open items.


This is still an issue for me; I tend to get stuck at the dealing with backlogs & run out of time/energy after that. Maybe clearing out inboxes more often than once a day would be the solution for me as well. My ambition is to do it daily, but that doesn't happen when instead I think "oh no, there's already too much in there". :)

Here's a tip: when your inboxes are overflowing and you feel resistance to dealing with it, remind yourself that clearing out some of the backlog is better than doing none at all.


I'm not victorious yet but I'm getting there. I had a month or so of consistent weekly reviews and then my workload increase notably and it was harder to get it done. Since then I've done three things that should increase my success rate:
1) make clearing my email inbox a very high priority daily, so much so that I make it a race to complete. Part of this includes moving anything I need to read that's more than a sentence or two into a /READING folder within my inbox. After Inbox is clean, I tackle /READING knowing that I can get to it later if I don't have time now. (Important items are handled immediately or moved into GTD within Evernote.)
2) I have a Someday-W (for weekly) and a Someday-M (for monthly) notebook in Evernote. The Someday-M items are reviewed the first week of the month and that list is much longer than the weekly list. I have 200 tasks/ideas combined in both of those folders with 70% of them in the monthly folder. Segmenting them helps the review seem less impossible.
3) I schedule my review first thing Friday morning knowing it will take almost until lunch to complete. When I've tried to do it after lunch, other things get in the way and I barely get it finished or it hangs over into the following week and life/work feels chaotic as a result.

I also have a checklist for the review process so I don't forget anything and I can jump back into if I'm interrupted that has been very helpful and includes reminders about things like reviewing Someday-M (monthly) the first week of the month and taking 5-10 minutes to fill out my personal GTD log where I track what is and isn't working and improvements I've made.

Dave Edwards

I have a standing appointment on my work calendar every Friday afternoon for a comprehensive weekly review. If something comes up and it gets delayed I begin to feel like I’m missing something. Kind of like an itch that needs to be scratched.

Every Sunday night, I do a second weekly review designed to wrap up “at home” items and to plot out the important items I need to focus on in the week ahead.


I do a weekly review almost every weekend, but some are a lot better than others. Also, I am manifestly not as creative and courageous as I could be at the end of the review.