deepstash

Beta

Deepstash brings you key ideas from the most inspiring articles like this one:

Read more efficiently

Save what inspires you

Remember anything

Getting Things Done

Getting Things Done

by David Allen

17

Key Ideas

Save all ideas

Work No Longer Has Explicit Boundaries

Work No Longer Has Explicit Boundaries

In the last half of the 20th century, what "work" represented in the industrialized world was transformed from an assembly line, make-it and move-it kinds of activity to "knowledge work."

Back then, work was self-evident. Now there are no edges to most of our projects.

260 SAVES

1.98k READS

VIEW

Basic Requirements for Managing Commitments

Managing commitments well requires the implementation of some basic activities and behaviors:

  • If it's on your mind, your mind isn't clear. Anything you consider unfinished in any way must be captured in a trusted system outside your mind, that you know you'll come back to regularly and sort through.
  • You must clarify exactly what your commitment is and decide what you have to do, if anything, to fulfill it.
  • Once you've decided on all the actions you need to take, you must keep reminders of them organized in a system you review regularly.

316 SAVES

1.13k READS

Why Things Are On Your Mind

  • You haven't clarified exactly what the intended outcome is.
  • You haven't decided what the very next physical action step is.
  • You haven't put reminders of the outcome and the action required in a system you trust.

Until those thoughts have been clarified and those decisions made, and the resulting data has been stored in a system that you absolutely know you will think about as often as you need to, your brain can't give up the job.

295 SAVES

873 READS

The Definition of "Stuff"

Stuff" means anything you have allowed into your psychological or physical world that doesn't belong where it is, but for which you haven't yet determined the desired outcome and the next action step.

The reason most organizing systems haven't worked for most people is that they haven't yet transformed all the "stuff" they're trying to organize. "Stuff" means these things are not controllable.

247 SAVES

665 READS

Managing Action

Managing Action

The essential element in managing all of your "stuff" is managing your actions. And it's very hard to manage actions if you haven't identified them.

A lack of time is not the major issue; the real problem is a lack of clarity and definition about what a project really is, and what the associated next-action steps required are. Clarifying things on the front end, when they first appear on the radar, rather than on the back end, after trouble has developed, allows people to reap the benefits of managing action.

259 SAVES

629 READS

The Five Steps Of The GTD Methodology

The stages we go trough as we deal with our work:

  • Collect what has your attention
  • Process what they mean and what to do about them
  • Organize the results and put then where they belong
  • Review as options for what we choose to do
  • Do them.

274 SAVES

695 READS

The Collecting Process And Tools

  • It's important to know what needs to be collected and how to collect it most effectively so you can process it appropriately.
  • To make the collection phase work: Every open loop must be in your collection system and out of your head, you must have as few collection buckets as you can get by with and you must empty them regularly.
  • The collection tools: physical in-basket, paper-based note-taking devices, electronic note-taking devices, voice-recording devices, e-mail.

240 SAVES

491 READS

The GTD Decision Tree

The GTD Decision Tree

Throughout your day, you’re constantly bombarded with information. All of these things are constantly competing for your attention.

287 SAVES

783 READS

Organize Actionable And Nonactionale Things

  • Possible categories for nonactionable items" trash, incubation tools, and reference storage. If no action is needed on something, you toss it, "tickle" it for later reassessment, or file it so you can find the material if you need to refer to it at another time.
  • To deal with actionable things, you need a list of projects, storage or files for project plans and materials, a calendar, a list of reminders of next actions, and a list of reminders of things you're waiting for.

All of the organizational categories need to be physically contained in some form.

241 SAVES

423 READS

The Weekly Review - A Critical Factor For Success

Everything that might potentially require action must be reviewed on a frequent enough basis to keep your mind from taking back the job of remembering and reminding.

Elements of the weekly review:

  • Gather and process all your stuff
  • Review your system
  • Update your lists
  • Get clean, clear, current, and complete.

250 SAVES

425 READS

The Key Ingredients of Relaxed Control

The Key Ingredients of Relaxed Control
  • Clearly defined outcomes and the next actions required to move them toward closure.
  • Reminders placed in a trusted system that is reviewed regularly.

234 SAVES

467 READS

The Five Phases of The Natural Planning Model

Your mind goes through five steps to accomplish virtually any task:

  • Defining purpose and principles
  • Outcome visioning
  • Brainstorming
  • Organizing
  • Identifying next actions.

246 SAVES

474 READS

Purpose: The Value Of Answering "Why"

  • It creates decision-making criteria
  • It aligns resources
  • It motivates
  • It clarifies focus
  • It expands options, opens up creative thinking.

237 SAVES

409 READS

The Basic Steps For Developing A Vision

  • View the project from beyond the completion date.
  • Envision wild success.
  • Capture features, aspects, qualities you imagine in place.

234 SAVES

424 READS

Brainstorming: Basic Principles

The basics principles can be summed up as follows:

  • Don't judge, challenge, evaluate, or criticize.
  • Go for quantity, not quality.
  • Put analysis and organization in the background.

231 SAVES

395 READS

David Allen

"When you start to make things happen, you really begin to believe you can make things happen. And that makes things happen."

David Allen

243 SAVES

457 READS

How Do You Prevent Broken Agreements with Yourself

If the negative feelings come from broken agreements, you have three options for dealing with them and eliminating the negative consequences:

  • Don't make the agreement.
  • Complete the agreement.
  • Renegotiate the agreement.

All of these can work to get rid of the unpleasant feelings.

232 SAVES

458 READS

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

GTD (Getting Things Done)

GTD is a productivity method for organizing your to-dos, priorities, and schedule in a way that makes them all manageable.

Its 5 principles are:

  • Capture
  • Clarify
  • Org...

"GTD is an organizational system. It doesn't put rules around how you actually do your work. Instead, it focuses on how you capture the work you need to do, organize it, and choose what needs your attention"

"GTD is an organizational system. It doesn't put rules around how you actually do your work. Instead, it focuses on how you capture the work you need to do, organize it, and choose what needs your attention"

GTD: Capture

Capture everything. Your to-dos, your ideas, your recurring tasks, everything. Put it in a pen-and-paper notebook, a to-do app, a planner, whatever you prefer to use to get organized.

5 more ideas

Personal Productivity: A Primer

Personal Productivity: A Primer

In the 1950s, work shifted from being labour-intensive towards being mind-intensive and eventually started to overload people’s cognitive abilities.

This led to the personal productivity bo...

Systems Of Productivity

Various organizational tools, production methods and other ways towards efficiency appealed to the logical mind, but slowly it dawned to many that the basic concept of these systems were the industrial processes themselves, and just a reusing of repetitive, mechanical motions, repackaged for knowledge workers.

These systems, however logical and appealing they looked, were not aiding productivity even though it seemed like that on the surface.

Inbox Zero: The Implosion Of Productivity

A productivity method called ‘Inbox Zero’ by Merlin Mann, a productivity hacker and creator of many other productivity tools like 43 folders, became a rage in 2007. It was based on the fact that all email should be answered or categorized until the inbox has zero emails left.

While sounding great, this personal productivity method actually increased a person’s email, leading to a circular path of pseudo-work: replying to the endless email.

Obstacles to Getting Stuff Done

  • The habit of putting off starting, because it’s uncomfortable.
  • Maybe you get started, but then constantly switch to other tasks.
  • You put off starting (or finishing) because con...

Picking one important thing

If you focus on getting the small stuff done but not the big stuff, or switch between tasks all the time, you’ll be less effective.

Pick one important thing to focus on at a time and learn to evaluate what tasks and projects are of higher value to you.

Starting

It's best done by focusing on the smallest first step and practicing just launching into that.

Pick the tiniest first step, and launch into it.