Getting Things Done

As no-one no doubt remembers a while ago I tried to organise myself better using David Allens Getting Things Done (GTD) methodology. I was partially successful, I’ve always wrote to-do lists, though not to the extent Allen recommends, I also try to stick by the two minute: “when a new item comes up, if it can be done in two minutes do it now, if not delegate it if suitable, else defer it until later”.

Anyway, I’m writing about this now, as my uni workload is quite daunting and Nik Butler reminded me about GTD. So this should be the perfect time to get into the methodology, it’ll let me break down my uni work into easily manageable chunks and I have someone to swap tips with.

Originally to implement GTD I tried using my PDA, which didn’t work for a few reasons - the to-do list functionality didn’t make GTD easy enough, the text entry was a pain and PC synchronisation was a pain to say the least. After that I tried using Tracks - a web based GTD tracker. That didn’t work out due to some bugs becoming too big an annoyance (I was running trunk to get the features I wanted) and to be honest, due to me losing interest.

This time I think I’m going to keep it simple, inspired by a comment on 43folders (a personal productivity site) I’m just going to keep a singular tab delimited file that goes something like “context description project” and for example just grep for context. I can keep the canonical copy on my server and for those rare times I’m away from a network connection, I can have a copy on my laptop, use a notepad to collect bits as I go and use notepads for contexts that are by definition away from a computer “@shopping” for example.

Lets see how long I can keep it up this time.