I have been organizationally challenged all my life. I’ve been able to get away with it, up until now. My current job involves juggling a few hundred balls, and I’ve dropped a lot more than is acceptable, and most of the drops come from not being properly organized. I needed – and still need – help.
David Allen has an organizational system. It’s called Getting Things Done (GTD).This organizational system is popular with a ridiculous number of people. Some of them swear by it so rigidly you could probably accuse them of being zealots. They scare me. Thankfully, most of the people who praise his system are normal folk, some of whom I respect a great deal.
So I’m trying it. It’s essentially a way to rewire procrastinator’s (like me) brains and force them to deal with things right freaking now, and then move on the next thing and deal with it right right freaking now. You can put things on the backburner, but you have to keep checking them to make sure they’re not forgotten and burned.
Basically, you deal with what can be dealt with immediately right away, schedule what can be dealt with later, and toss that which is really not related to you. Oh, and you track everything. It’s a little more complex, but that’s the gist.
I’m starting to understand the cult-like following, but hope I’ll never be a zealot. It’s a great foundation thus far, and we’ll see how I feel about it three months in instead of two weeks in. I can already see a few tweaks I’m going to make, but as a time management foundation, I like it. It gives you a sense of accomplishment, and a method to deal with all the balls up in the air without letting them crash.
I’m noticeably (to me, anyways) more productive, and feel a lot less scatter-brained. Fingers crossed.
The book is available from Amazon or Chapters, and I like using Remember the Milk and/or Behances Action Pads for task tracking.
5 thoughts on “and this month, I joined a cult”
Another great program for task tracking is Intervals. We developed Intervals way before GTD was on the radar, and had to rely instead on our experiences getting things done as a small business. Check it out if you have some time.
Sounds like Scientology propaganda to me =)
One of us
One of us
One of us
I have the GTD Outlook plugin on my workstation in corporate-land, which syncs up nicely with my Windows Mobile 6 PDA/Phone (are you choking on all the MS stuff yet?). I even went to a David Allen seminar (granted, it was a seminar my father was hosting for his Management Studies business so I got in for free) and left with renewed passion for the organization system. Plus I’ve been throwing the book at my coworkers every time they complain that they can’t get a handle on their workload (yes, take that literally – my copy is at work). I visit 43folders.com even though I don’t own any Apple products.
Lists, lists, lists…that’s pretty much the gist of it right there, folks. And yet it’s still utter goodness for folks who work in interrupt-driven environments like mine.
Welcome to the cult.
hey you look like you know what you’re doing in that pic!
i’m going to check this book out too since i’m lazy…thanks!