There's a reason Getting Things Done (aka GTD) has become one of the
most popular and often used time management systems: it's
powerful AND simple. Put simply, it's a bottom
system, meaning its primary focus is on actions and projects.
The advantage of using a
bottom-up system is in
dealing with the daily tasks that come your way:
Bottom-up systems focus on specifically what you need to do.
starting point is your actions and projects, with little - or at least
less - focus put on the higher levels of your mission, values, roles,
- Buy dog food
- Buy cell phone for daughter
- Wash and fold laundry
- Prepare for meeting with CFO
- Review draft of 2008 Tax Return
- Drop off daughter at gymnastics
- Drop off son at soccer practice
- Create training plan for running group
- Run 6 miles in target heart zone
- Pick up daughter from gymnastics
- Pick up son from soccer practice
Bottom-up systems are great at capturing all of these daily
to-do's and more.
GTD is so powerful because of its basic premises.
effective, you've got to:
First, a quick note about using any time management system...
- Get things out of your head and into a trusted
- Make Up front decisions about your next actions
Time Management is a Thinking Process
It doesn't matter whether you use paper and pencil, a planner, a
Blackberry, Palm or other smartphone, or what computer system you're
on. Although the tools certainly help, once you get the concepts and
principles, you can be just as
whatever resources you may have.
constant - principles are not.
Keep that in mind as you're learning the GTD and RPM systems.
Getting Things Done takes the Write
Everything Down time management technique to a whole nother
level by integrating it into a complete system.
generally agreed that we're capable of focusing on 7 things - plus or
minus two - at any given time. We can't be effective when our focus is
on trying to remember all of the things we think we have to do.
This system solves the problem through mastering 5 workflow steps:
The above workflow pages summarize each step, including a
David Allen created for the processing and organizing steps.
Additionally, I share my setup, not for you to
copy – although you certainly can if you like – but to give you some
ideas for what may work best for you.
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