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Hi all,

This is my first post, so firstly just want to say, i've been reading all your threads and there's some stellar info in here. I'm new to GTD (read and did the book) and OF only a month or so in. It's been a rocky start with my first collect and process stages taking 40+ hours (i took on my whole life, home, business, renovations, social..and everything else in between). Then, I stalled with OF due to some some technical (syncing) hitches (Thanks Brian at Omni for your patience in helping me get it sorted). So now i'm finally back on deck and trying to get myself sorted again.

I'm reworking my contexts, I have a lot and have thought to simplify but also feel the need for subcontexts within most contexts. That all works and seems fine until I reach this next bit:

The specific problem of how to handle creative/mental tasks within contexts - especially when it's more like a mode or state than a context.

I run a creative agency so there is a lot to keep on top of, both client work and internal agency work.

I use an @office context for anything to do with staying on top of the physical environment like filing, maintenance, infrastructure etc. and I use @Computer and @Online (both with several subcontexts) to sort my working actions.

What I can't work out though is if I should have a context for:

@creative when I want to get my head on concepts, strategies and design that could all be done in any of my other contexts depending on how I feel.

Or @planning/outlining for when I want to sit down and just do that stuff (regardless of whether it's done at my mac or on a napkin in a cafe)

Or @decisions for when I just want to sit down and make some hard decisions.
(again regardless of whether it's done at my mac or on a napkin in a cafe)

Or @IT for when i just want to sort out all those problems at once
(you get the drift).

Problem is that I fall into the trap of not being sure if I've put "brainstorm ideas for jobX) under the context of @Computer>G5 (expecting to use OmniGaffle) or @Creative (not sure of where or how i'll tackle it).

Am I breaking any cardinal GTD rules with this approach or missing something simple. I have the feeling the answer is going to be inn perspectives but I just havn't got my head around that yet.

Thanks for any advice anyone can give on this.
Archie, welcome aboard, glad I could help, and thanks for sticking with it. :-)

This topic comes up fairly frequently, and I should probably do a round of thread combining and then sticky the result. So if the following links all go to the same thread, that's what happened. :-)

A couple of starter threads:

Programmers / Developers / Creatives: What are your contexts?

Working in context mode

If it's any help, I know our CEO, Ken, uses a system similar to what you were thinking about to manage his various roles here. He's got a "Coding" context and a couple of "CEO" contexts related to the different kinds of headspace he needs to be in when working on stuff.

As far as rule-breaking... I don't know if there are any "rules". Useful guidelines, maybe. In general, I try to keep my contexts specific enough that they're useful, but general enough that they get used regularly. Not counting my various contexts for folks here at Omni, I have 18 that I use regularly.

When you're starting out, though, I'd say go ahead and add a new context if you think it would be useful - you can always prune ones that don't work out later on.

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