Getting Things Done

I’ve picked up some additional responsibility at work – and decided that I should devote a little extra time to making sure I was using my time effectively – and I remembered that my friend Steve Andersen had been hot on a book and method of task management called "getting things done". I sent him a quick note to find out if he was still using the tool – and he is – so I bought the book online.

Turns out that the basic premise is pretty easy – your brain, although terrific – won’t be restful or creative unless you have a great system for keeping track of what you need or want to do next. I get it – I’ll think of a tune I want to learn on my guitar while I’m driving my car – or will think of a project or task at work when I’m out for a run – both moments when I can’t do anything about those items. The author of the book, David Allen, calls those "open loops" and thinks that until you write those down somewhere in a foolproof system – your brain will keep pestering you to get them done.

I haven’t implemented his tools yet, but am going to. I’m still debating exactly how, though. I do a pretty good job of writing things down and keeping them all in one spot – and I’ll have access to both my smart phone and a laptop (and, with a remote desktop connection – to my computer at home, too) – so I’m giving strong consideration to going completely digital.

We’ll see how it goes. I’ll need to find a day to top off my task list, think of the appropriate categories and so on – but I’m excited. Even implementing a few of his suggestions (the two minute rule – which goes like this: if you can do it in two minutes – do it NOW  – don’t defer) have helped. More when I get organized!


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