Are You Making It All Work?

tetris

Just started listening to the new book from GTD guru David Allen, Making It All Work.  Billed as a companion toolkit to the now classic, Getting Things Done:

David Allen shows us how to excel in dealing with our daily commitments, the unexpected, and the information overload that threatens to drown us. “Making It All Work” provides an instantly usable, success-building toolkit for winning “the game.”

It is still early so check back in a bit for a review/recommendation.

I have been off and on again with GTD for quite some time.  I have found that when I am not swamped, I am too lazy to keep up with a system and when I am swamped, my system is not ingrained enough to keep up.  Basically, I am still at level 1 GTD, list management (trying to find a spot for everything hence the Tetris reference).

In an effort to improve my GTD skills I am going to try and be explicit on what I am tracking and how I am doing it.  Here is my current system and tools:

  • Evernote – Vacation ideas, gift ideas, and other long term items that I will want to look up at some point in the future.  You can access Evernote on your computer, on the web, and even on your iPhone so there really is not an excuse not to use it even more.  So why don’t I?  It may just be me. but it seems like overkill when you are trying to quickly capture something.
  • TextPad – work to-dos. Have been using TextPad for years since it is so light weight and you can manage multiple tab lists for different projects.
  • Outlook – work calendar.  When there is something I have to get done (reports, presentations, etc) I try to schedule time in advance on the calendar to make sure I get it done in time.  I am getting better at email management but quite a ways away from “InBox Zero”
  • Google Calendar – family events.  My wife and try to put all our events online so we can track all the b-day parties, dr. apts, soccer games, and other out of work stuff.  Its great for helping to avoid double bookings.
  • iPhone Task List – for errands.  I don’t even know the name of this app but is really nothing special.  Just something to track all the stuff I need to get next time I am at Target, Costco, etc.
  • del.icio.us – web site tracker.  Used for saving good web articles, web references to access at a later time.

More to come here.

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  • It is a challenge isn’t it – I completely understand your situation. When I am ‘on’ it works quite well but if I back off things build up quickly. Keep us updated on your results and MIAW. I need to place that order.

    -Stephen

    • josh

      Yeah, the reviews online for MIAW have been so-so that I have seen. I am budgeting my expectations and trying to use it as an opportunity for improvement. Will let you know more when I get a bit father along.