ONE master list that's separated by @contexts or multiple @context lists?

aderoy

Registered
"Emacs is based on the fear that the operating system may not be there someday." - saying from my UNIX days.

Text only, check boxes, links to web/file etc, report of open/closed etc. Can be used with as much depth as you like. Free no costs other than disk space, can be installed with non-admin if work machines are locked down. There are 'portable' versions for iOS and Android that are subpar. Keyboard over mouse to get the best from experience

https://www.gnu.org/software/emacs/

https://orgmode.org

https://www.emacswiki.org/emacs/OrgMode

Searching online will yield many guides on org mode. People either like it or hate it, since it is free and there are many online learning resources to see if it may fit your process.
 

mcogilvie

Registered
"Emacs is based on the fear that the operating system may not be there someday." - saying from my UNIX days.

Text only, check boxes, links to web/file etc, report of open/closed etc. Can be used with as much depth as you like. Free no costs other than disk space, can be installed with non-admin if work machines are locked down. There are 'portable' versions for iOS and Android that are subpar. Keyboard over mouse to get the best from experience

https://www.gnu.org/software/emacs/

https://orgmode.org

https://www.emacswiki.org/emacs/OrgMode

Searching online will yield many guides on org mode. People either like it or hate it, since it is free and there are many online learning resources to see if it may fit your process.
Good summary, except I don’t love it or hate it: I think it is .. quaint. But then again, my fingers have vi bindings, so who am I to talk? However, I can’t see learning emacs to make todo lists. That’s like requiring a PhD to operate a coffee machine.
 

aderoy

Registered
'quaint' is not often the word used regarding EMACS :cool: Used it from my OpenVMS & HP-UX days and think it may have tilted my sense of humor.


If you already have vi in finger memory it is not worth the learning curve for org-mode.

It is a acquired taste, plain text does have some good points, as does paper planners, OmniFocus or mind maps etc. So many tools find the best is the one that fits your thinking.
 

Jared Caron

GTD enthusiast and amateur coach
I am hoping someone can help me with my quandary here.

Currently, I use a single .txt file to hold and organize my list of projects, next actions, waiting for, and someday/maybe items.

For example:

@PROJECTS
- item 1
- item 2
- etc.

@AGENDAS
#PERSON x
- item 1
- item 2
- etc.
#PERSON y
- item 1
- item 2
- etc.

@ANYWHERE
- item 1
- item 2
- etc.

The good: By using one master list, I don't have to go back and forth between lists. An item should only be on my calendar or on that master list.

The bad: With such a large list, it's easy to become overwhelmed by and numb to the list.

For capture, I either use 3x5 index cards or Google Keep, depending on what I have available. I'm a psychotherapist, and I can't readily use my phone or other electronic devices to capture thoughts in the middle of a session with someone. Most people don't mind if I make a note on paper, thankfully.

I have an @AGENDA for every client. It's not unlike me to have 50+ agendas at a given time.

I've considered going lo-tech and using a binder and divider tabs to separate my lists. Part of me thinks it would be nice to have a separate page dedicated to a particular person under the @AGENDAS divider and tab. However, carrying around a large binder doesn't seem all that practical. A .txt in Dropbox seems like it would be much more ubiquitous. (I use .txt because it's easily accessible on any electronic device, ubiquitous, easy to back up, and not dependent on software.)

I've also considered making separate .txt files (like separate pages in a binder), but that seems somewhat unwieldy, unlike sheets of paper, especially given the large number of @AGENDAS I manage.

-----

I don't want my questions to get lost in the weeds above, so here they are:

Do you use ONE master list that's separated by @contexts or multiple context lists? Why do you keep the lists the way you do?

For those of you that have an extensive list of @AGENDAS, how do you manage those?

Has David ever addressed this? If so, where can I find that information?

Thank you!
So i would suggest the following:

  1. If you're finding you're going numb to the long list it might be time to consider a change
  2. I would strongly suggest making at least the following separations:
    1. Projects
    2. Next Actions
    3. Agendas (seems like you have so many you might consider this almost its own context)
    4. Waiting For
    5. Someday Maybe
  3. The above lists should have discrete edges to function well. Especially projects and someday maybe. They are distinct categories from everything else. You dont want to be bothered with them when your deciding to do work - like david says in the book, you cant "do" a project (or a waiting for for that matter...).
  4. Beyond that i would recommend staying conscious to how it feels looking at your lists. If you're overwhelmed with the amount of text or scrolling you have to do, consider separating.
As far as your format/tool, that's really up to you. It might be worth considering something a bit more streamlined, but if its working for you i wont tell you to change. You might find the resources on Connect to be useful as well as there are setup guides for numerous peices of software and other really useful information to help fine tune your system.
 
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