Slice of GTD Life with Peter Byrom

davidcoforum

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You may already be familiar with Peter Byrom from his insightful participation in the GTD forums. Now you'll have a chance to hear him describe the arc of his GTD journey. He talks in detail about the digital tools he has used, including Things, Todoist, and Outlook. Peter also reflects on his recent experience with the more subtle relationship between next actions and projects, and the Purpose and Principles horizon. At one point he refers to the GTD story that we posted in written form in 2019, and you can read that by clicking here.

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PeterByrom

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You may already be familiar with Peter Byrom from his insightful participation in the GTD forums. Now you'll have a chance to hear him describe the arc of his GTD journey. He talks in detail about the digital tools he has used, including Things, Todoist, and Outlook. Peter also reflects on his recent experience with the more subtle relationship between next actions and projects, and the Purpose and Principles horizon. At one point he refers to the GTD story that we posted in written form in 2019, and you can read that by clicking here.

Video

Audio

Thank you so much John! It was a real pleasure!

One thing that only struck me afterwards (as always with such interviews!) is how the natural planning model (as opposed to the “ego planning model”!) is also a really good bridge to horizon 5, because of how it requires you to ask “why” questions and value questions at the project level, which inevitably will be informed by some trickle down from the big equivalents higher up! Another reason why the natural planning model is so effective and valuable (I’ve been relying on it a lot recently as I grapple with new projects)!
 

PeterByrom

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PS. Something that may be worth adding, on the subject of filters:

If you find it tedious labelling and then putting all your single actions (actions which aren’t part of a project) into the “-“ project, then you could create some context projects and use them after all.

Eg

Instead of:

@calls Cathy doing ok post-lockdown? #-

You could do:

Cathy doing ok post-lockdown? #calls

Then, in the calls filter, add an OR condition to show either a task with the @calls label OR a task in the #calls project:

(@calls | #calls) & !##someday maybe
 
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PeterByrom

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So I keep having these lightbulb moments, and figured I might as well keep throwing them in here...

If you’re not satisfied with using a hashtagged keyword in Microsoft to do - for connecting projects and actions - then why not type out the whole project as a hashtag, using that same “hyphenated” method?

Microsoft to do has now implemented a pop up menu which shows you all the hashtags you’ve already created, whenever you drop the # symbol into typing a new task. This means that it’s easier to select the identical, corresponding hashtag for the project, because as you type, the range of pre-existing hashtag options narrows down and you eventually just click the one you want instead of typing it all.

So, if the project is “website launched” then on the projects list, you could literally just write:

#website-launched

And then when you create next actions for it in your next action contexts lists, drop the hashtag in, and select that project:

Eg:

Email Larry to clarify CMS guidelines circulation #website-launched

That way, it’s not just a keyword, it’s literally THE project!

Another example attached, mocked up in MS to do...

Make sense? Am I crazy? Etc?
 

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Murray

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So I keep having these lightbulb moments, and figured I might as well keep throwing them in here...

If you’re not satisfied with using a hashtagged keyword in Microsoft to do - for connecting projects and actions - then why not type out the whole project as a hashtag, using that same “hyphenated” method?

Microsoft to do has now implemented a pop up menu which shows you all the hashtags you’ve already created, whenever you drop the # symbol into typing a new task. This means that it’s easier to select the identical, corresponding hashtag for the project, because as you type, the range of pre-existing hashtag options narrows down and you eventually just click the one you want instead of typing it all.

So, if the project is “website launched” then on the projects list, you could literally just write:

#website-launched

And then when you create next actions for it in your next action contexts lists, drop the hashtag in, and select that project:

Eg:

Email Larry to clarify CMS guidelines circulation #website-launched

That way, it’s not just a keyword, it’s literally THE project!

Another example attached, mocked up in MS to do...

Make sense? Am I crazy? Etc?
I really like using a tag in my project names to link to actions in mstodo. I'll add a piece to what you said about the pop up menu: once you've typed enough of the tag that the only one appearing in the pop up menu is the correct tag, you can just hit enter and it will auto complete it for you. No need to click to select from the menu in that case.
 

moseylissa

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Peter, I SO appreciate the way you explained things!
My most significant change based on what you said has to be using tags in OneNote for next actions rather than keeping separate next actions lists. With the Tag Search in OneNote, I now have a panel on the right with all my next actions neatly categorized by type and they're automatically hyperlinked to their projects. It is so much easier that my shoulders dropped a bit. :)
 

PeterByrom

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Peter, I SO appreciate the way you explained things!
My most significant change based on what you said has to be using tags in OneNote for next actions rather than keeping separate next actions lists. With the Tag Search in OneNote, I now have a panel on the right with all my next actions neatly categorized by type and they're automatically hyperlinked to their projects. It is so much easier that my shoulders dropped a bit. :)

Delighted to hear that! What a great result!

I always advocate tags for contexts over projects wherever possible. It’s also fewer tags to manage!
 

PeterByrom

Registered
So I keep having these lightbulb moments, and figured I might as well keep throwing them in here...

If you’re not satisfied with using a hashtagged keyword in Microsoft to do - for connecting projects and actions - then why not type out the whole project as a hashtag, using that same “hyphenated” method?

Microsoft to do has now implemented a pop up menu which shows you all the hashtags you’ve already created, whenever you drop the # symbol into typing a new task. This means that it’s easier to select the identical, corresponding hashtag for the project, because as you type, the range of pre-existing hashtag options narrows down and you eventually just click the one you want instead of typing it all.

So, if the project is “website launched” then on the projects list, you could literally just write:

#website-launched

And then when you create next actions for it in your next action contexts lists, drop the hashtag in, and select that project:

Eg:

Email Larry to clarify CMS guidelines circulation #website-launched

That way, it’s not just a keyword, it’s literally THE project!

Another example attached, mocked up in MS to do...

Make sense? Am I crazy? Etc?

A friend of mine wanted to know a little more about this option for MS To Do (linking projects & actions using the latest updates) so I made the video below. Sharing it here in case it’s of interest!

 
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