I really don't like my lists...
While I like the ideas of GTD - in day-to-day business I tend to avoid looking at my lists. I just don't look at them...
Honestly speaking I'm a bit afraid of them;). It is just no fun looking at hundreds and hundreds of tasks and projects.
I've tried out quite a lot of systems. Starting with a paper-based System (time system) switching to a variety of Mac and iPhone/iPad software (ToDo, Omnifocus, Thinking Rock,...). None of these has ever met my expectations and proved to be useful.
Does anyone have some useful hints that go beyond the mantra of being self disciplined?David Allen mentioned "your system should be fun to work with" - can anyone provide some ideas to get more fun into working with lists?
Are you caught in the busy trap?
At any given moment you can spend your time doing one of three things:
1. Doing defined work
2. Doing work as it shows up
3. Defining work
Many people are uncomfortable doing 1 and 3 so they get wrapped around 2. They figure if they just get busy enough then they can avoid having to think about the tougher and more important issues in their lives. D.A. calls this "getting caught in the busy trap."
There's another reason why the busy trap is so seductive; it's familiar. Without a system for doing 1 and 3 you only have 2 left. Your subconscious may not be used to operating in 1 and 3 so it resists the unfamiliar. It takes time for your subconscious to trust your lists and your system. You can't just expect your subconscious to drop years of conditioning and trust a system that's unproven to your own mind.
My brain didn't trust my system for almost two months; it kept trying to take back the job. Consciously I new that GTD principles work but unconsciously I still had old patterns so deeply ingrained that it was uncomfortable. I made the decision to stick with it regardless of my feelings at the time. Eventually my subconcious accepted that I had found a better system and it started to let go.
I love working from an action list of things that I can knock off rapidly and get some quick wins. In fact, I look forward to Mondays because I do my weekly reviews on Fridays or Sundays. On Monday I have organized lists of defined work, I go on a "mad-assed tear" (as Howard Stern says) and I love it.
In conclusion I'm really just trying to say that maybe your brain just doesn't trust operating with a mind like water yet. Stick with the habits, don't get caught up with the toys (use paper if technology is holding you back), be patient with yourself and decide after three months of dedicated effort if GTD is right for you.
This is great! Thank you :)
I found D.A. books quite complete and rich of ideas. However, your answers to my thread are even more impressing. You get lots of suggestions on the internet about self organisation - but your replies show that you guys know, what you are talking about.
CJSullivan, you got the point - I somehow feel like beeing bashed by my list, because it reminds me of what I should be doing... and still - I have my gut-feeling that not everything important is on it...
Originally Posted by CJSullivan
structuring everything according to the "upper horizons" would keep me quite bussy. As an entrepreneur, running a hand full of startups, I tend to come up with "high flying visions" (...upper horizons) which might eventuelly turn out to be illusions just a few month later. Hence, the upper horizon will change a bit... from time to time. :confused: the problem is not that many projects and tasks become obsolete. It is more that the whole pyramidal structure of thinking (Altitude thinking) seem inappriate, considering the paste of change at the "upper horizons".
Originally Posted by CJSullivan
Confused now? I am...:confused: Some ideas?
ellobogrande, this is an interesting point. Yes - I tend to question my list quite often and hence, find myself doing something different then I had planned to do. Still, ignoring the list can - from time to time - be a good idea. I refer to "gut-feeling" at this point, which is nothing else than accumulated experiance. Sometimes you just know what the right thing to do at a particular moment is. And at this time - ignoring whatever is on your list might be a goed decision. The problem is - some times the "gut-feeling" proofs to be wrong. For my part - I really struggle finding a :idea: balanced way of intuitive decision making and "sticking to the list".
Originally Posted by ellobogrande
Thank you all for your comments and ideas:)