Tuesday, June 12, 2007

GTD...Geting Things Done

Gertrude (GTD for short) is the Muse for Getting Things Done. She is a no nonsense kind of person who makes lists, has a place for everything, and gets things checked off!! We need her at this moment to get us 1) free from an overabundance of stuff and 2) organized to move...

You probably have heard about Getting Things Done, a book by David Allen whose apt subtitle is “The Art of Stress-Free Productivity.” Many people swear by GTD to keep them organized and focused. Lots of geeks use it. But artists can use it to navigate our overloaded world too...

GTD rests on the principle that a person needs to move tasks out of the mind by recording them somewhere. That way, the mind is freed from the job of remembering everything that needs to be done, and can concentrate on actually performing those tasks and have more time for creativity...

It is based on 43 folders, 1 for each month of the year (12 folders) and one for each day of the month (31 folders). These files can help you manage your paperwork and life by storing and sorting items you need to address on the day you need to address them. Surprisingly, I have used this system for years to stay organized with my work an home. And I have set many people on the road to organized with it... Now it has a name and a following called GTD...

So how does GTD work?
The summarized, bullet-point version:

  • apply a "do it, delegate it, defer it, drop it" rule to get your in-box to empty
  • reassess goals and stay focused in changing situations
  • plan projects as well as get them unstuck
  • overcome feelings of confusion, anxiety, and being overwhelmed
  • feel fine about what you're not doing
  • identify all the stuff in your life that isn’t in the right place (close all open loops)
  • get rid of the stuff that isn’t yours or you don’t need right now
  • create a right place that you trust and that supports your working style and values
  • put your stuff in the right place, consistently
  • do your stuff in a way that honors your time, your energy, and the context of any given moment
  • do it daily

Simply, you make your stuff into doable items or things you can just get rid of. Everything you keep has a clear reason for being in your life at any given moment—both now and well into the future. This gives you an amazing kind of confidence that:

  1. nothing gets lost, and
  2. you always understand what’s on or off your plate

Also built-in to the system are an ongoing series of reviews, in which you periodically re-examine your now-organized stuff from to make sure your vertical focus (individual projects and their tasks) is working in concert with your horizontal focus (side to side scanning of all incoming channels for new stuff). It’s actually sort of fun and oddly satisfying.

Today's aMUSEment - Decide to devote 10 minutes today to reading about GTD. A good place to start is here. You can find 8 good podcasts about GTD here.

U Be Creative Today!

1 comment:

FrenchGardenHouse said...

yikes....sounds BIG! But I will be following your link to see.

Thanks for all the Muses...we can always use one or two!