What makes a good weekly review?

Cpu_Modern

Registered
Having the projects list updated in the best possible way. Re-phrase projects, maybe converge some or split others. Get the exchange with SdMb right. Then, the weekly goals are automatically well set. That in turn let's me have a nice weekend and a swift start when the work week starts again.
 

shankara

Registered
I have been doing weekly reviews since 2008. My reviews are on Sunday mornings. For several years after I started with GTD, I used to feel so good, so relaxed, after a weekly review that I would fall asleep deeply every Sunday afternoon for an hour or so! That used to be the most deliciously stress-free sleep of the week! In fact, it became a thing in our household to say “I slept like after a weekly review” after a good night’s sleep!

On a more serious note, a good weekly review for me is a complete weekly review: there are no projects left to be reviewed and no NAs not revisited. I almost never miss a weekly review, but unfortunately sometimes my weekly reviews do remain incomplete these days.
 

Wilson Ng

Registered
I'd create my own weekly review checklist. Everyone has different areas that needs to be checked. No one's weekly review will be the same. Create one that fits your needs. Use other people's weekly review as a template and start from there.

I combine it with my daily review (at the end of the day) for the runway level view, the weekly review (on Friday afternoons) for a higher Horizon of Focus and the monthly review (a few days before the end of the month) to check my quarterly goals.
 

Sojourner

Registered
Like others have already stated, every weekly review is good and worthwhile! It's the peace of mind and respite I seek at the end of a long week.

That said, the weekly reviews I feel the most good about are the ones where I can look back and see that I genuinely engaged in everything I needed or wanted to do for that week. My engagement energy levels are cyclical. Of course, being a "functional" introvert, I tend to take far too much time thinking about the minutia of everything before engaging. ;)
 

John Forrister

GTD Connect
Staff member
Several years ago I was talking with Meg Edwards and Julie Ireland about what people said were the leaks or flaws in their GTD practice. We found that every issue tracked back to either not reviewing consistently, or not doing all of the steps. We put together a series of three webinars for GTD Connect called the Trust Challenge. We explored each of the 11 steps of the GTD Weekly Review in depth. If you have any feeling less than good after reviewing, I recommend the Trust Challenge. Part 1| Part 2| Part 3
 

ArunM

Registered
For me they're all good. What makes them great is when I let myself spend more time on the Get Creative section.
How long does it take for you to do your reviews ?My review usually takes 2 - 3 hours and I almost never do the get creative section now a days. I have 60- 70 ongoing projects and I guess being creative part somehow always falls off.
 

Stuart Rudner

Registered
Forgive what may be an ignorant question. I am just getting into GTD. I have adopted many of the practices, but have resisted the weekly review. I am worried it will be overwhelming and time consuming, and I just don't think I have that time to spare.
So I guess my question is "Why?" - what is the benefit you get out of it?
 

thomasbk

Registered
@Stuart Rudner
The Weekly Review is the oversight of your system. Perhaps you did the next action on a project, but did you assign a new next action or accidentally leave it in limbo? Are you otherwise scanning your calendar to see what's coming up in the next couple of weeks or something you forgot about in the past week? How are you keeping up with things you're waiting on, but people have missed their deadlines? Plus, the Review includes time for mind sweeping and creative thinking.

In practice, some people do their Review weekly, others space it out further, while still others do mini-reviews every few days. It comes down to what gives you the most confidence that your system has everything and is working. Otherwise, your mind will try to hold on to all the open loops.

David equated the Review with the relief you feel by getting everything in order before leaving for vacation. The Review is designed so you can feel that relief and confidence more frequently than on an annual basis.
 

Shady Waxwing

Registered
How long does it take for you to do your reviews ?My review usually takes 2 - 3 hours and I almost never do the get creative section now a days. I have 60- 70 ongoing projects and I guess being creative part somehow always falls off.
@ArunM the review takes me about 90 minutes. I get my inboxes to empty often, usually every day, so I don't have a lot to process during the Get Clear phase of the review. I also am careful not slip from reviewing into doing. By definition, everything I'm reviewing is more than two minutes. If I let myself start doing, it only takes a few items to turn a 90-minute review into a doing session.

You could time yourself on each of the 11 steps of the review and find out if there's someplace in particular that bogs you down. If you post about that in the forum, you might get tips about avoid that quicksand.
 

enyonam

Registered
I found that the Weekly Review depended on how dynamic my lists are. If there's a lot changing or happening in every part of the life then yah, it's a longer weekly review. But I like what @KellyForrister said in another post about even partial completion of the weekly review has never seemed to be a waste. I totally concur. If you can only spend 30 minutes I would still do that ... it won't be wasted.
 

Wilson Ng

Registered
I have two daily reviews. The first one is a short list when I can't seem to find the time.

It includes just scanning the inbox for any urgent items and forwarding them to the appropriate destination (trash, task manager, calendar, etc.). Then I check my calendar for any appointments and look for any events that may require adding a followup task. Then I check my due items (usually on the calendar as well) to address those. Next, I check my "waiting for" list to see if I need to push on something there.

The second review is the more comprehensive list that addresses everything else and lets me get to the creative brainstorming stage.

If I'm just tired, I'll do the quick daily review. At least I got the most important items taken care of. Then I do make a time block hopefully within the next couple of days to do the regular/comprehensive daily review.

Create those 2 checklists. Print them out or put them somewhere obvious. I have it printed as a page for my disc bound notebook and open to that page when I start the daily review. Going through that checklist (the quick version or the long version) ensures that I can touch bases on what needs attention.

A quick review is better than no review at all.
 

Sarahsuccess

Registered
Having the projects list updated in the best possible way. Re-phrase projects, maybe converge some or split others. Get the exchange with SdMb right. Then, the weekly goals are automatically well set. That in turn let's me have a nice weekend and a swift start when the work week starts again.

What do you mean by: “Get the exchange with SdMb right.”? What is SdMb?

Sarah
 
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