These are some aspects of processing that I find eat up a lot of time. Wouod appreciate any ideas on managing them better.
I use plain vanilla Palm and list Projects in a Memo category so they are orderd A to Z. I use a set of prefixes so that project names are grouped-- such as PROF (professional), FAM (family), HSHLD, FIN (financial). During processing time, once I have determined that a piece of stuff is not trash, that I want to act on it, and that it is a project or project-related, the slowest activities for me are: 1) Determining if I have the project listed already. 2) If I do, adding something to it's description such as a possible sub-project or the existence of the support material. 3) Changing an existing n/a based on a new input from the stuff I am processing.
Also, out of processing emerges projects that are active in the sense that they have a specific time frame, and I am responsible for having the time blocked out and resources at hand, but I will not know until the last moment if they will really take place. Is there a printable name for these? How do other folks cope with these in regard to project list, calendar, and sanity?
There are also "Dated Future Projects". These projects do require not activity at present other than to establish start dates and benchmarks. But, I find that as soon as I recognize one I have to get it on the calendar with possible/probable intermediate steps noted by date but it can take a bit of calendar research and juggling to do so and I don't dare wait until the Weekly Review for this or park it on an undated next action context.
Finally, just entering dates and small bits of information (that I would expect to take a minute or two) can also take more time because I may encounter a conflict between events and need to note that an event needs to be moved (that often gives rise to a new project and a n/a) or I find that entering a piece of information reminds me of something else that I must note (e.g., entering a new phone number for someone reminds me of something I need to ask that person, so I need to note that).