EN based GTD
Evernote (EN) was the key to making GTD start to work for me because I was finally able to find a place to dump all my piles of "Stuff" into a place that was searchable and trustworthy. I was able to let go of the physical paper once I knew I could access it (and more more reliably then when piled everywhere in my environment). Filing into folders in drawers has never worked for me because "out of sight, out of mind" and I knew it so I never filed, just piled.
I use FastEver on my iPhone as my primary capture tool and I don't worry about tagging. I just write thoughts there and hit Send and it ends up in my Inbox for processing later. This alone made a huge difference in my life.
I use CamScanner app similarly for minor receipts and anything scanned ends up in my EN Inbox.
All emails that require actions or response are fwd to EN inbox and then moved into a separate folder for later replies. I thread the emails with subject line of patient name and client so that I can refer back to them swiftly.
I have a Canon imageForumula scan-tini that I can carry with me to/from ofc and out of town meetings and use when needed. Thinking about adding a desktop model for the huge backlogs but this is handy for the as needed "stuff".
I've been dumping my PDFs of research background articles into EN because they become searchable.
Scanning memorabilia into there has made it easier to hold onto a few treasured physical items but let go of things of which I just want a reminder.
I structured EN using the secret weapons' suggested form but am gradually getting down to more folders and less tagging. I am using tags just for context, agendas and subcategories that I use routinely (saved searches) but most commonly just use the excellent search tool.
Because I am almost always with a phone, laptop, iPhone... dividing NA's into context does not seem to help much and that has proved to be a problem with deciding what best to do next. I am either in appts or it is wide open. It then becomes easiest to just deal with the email about a critically ill dog in Greece (latest and loudest) rather than other things that might better serve my long term goals.
The weekly review, when I force myself to do it, is THE powerful tool for keeping all the balls in the air that everyone keeps stating here over and over. If I can just lift my head out of the moment to moment cries for my attention to survey the landscape, I do regain some sanity.
The lack of the ability to print a list of the notes that contain next actions is a problem with EN. Sometimes I will do a printscreen of the listed items in my Today folder, other times I just grab a pen and paper and jot down the must do's. I always over-estimate the amount that I can accomplish in any time-frame but the original list of all that I want to accomplish is still in the EN folder for reference.
The weekly review is the only way I can manage to avoid lists becoming stale and piling up. These piles of dead lists were what I left in my wake after my first attempt to do GTD back in 2008. I am still finding them as I go through backlog.
I started all this back in August 2012 and I have a long way to go in my GTD practice to get anywhere near blackbelt but I have less of a feeling that I am drowning and I see light at the end of the tunnel. Some of this has been an acceptance that I cannot do it all. Just capturing all my commitments was a huge step toward change. There is a reason I feel overwhelmed... it is not humanly possible to accomplish what I had agreed to before I had a way to survey the entirety of everything grabbing my attention.
Freemind, the free mindmapping software, has been a powerful tool for me to get forward motion on large projects that had been stalled because they had seemed too daunting. I have trouble tracking linearly and being able to create child nodes as I brainstorm allows me to find identifiable and actionable paths once I have completed my brain dump on a project.
Thank you to everyone here on the Forum. Your past posts with tips and tricks are always useful.