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Help with a writerís contexts? Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Hi there!

Iíve been using some sort of quasi-GTD for some time now, long before I heard about the book and whatnot. Mostly, my approach has always been to a) get stuff out of my head and b) put tasks into what the book calls contexts. So, when I finally heard of ďproperĒ GTD, I was an easy convert.

Anyway.

I was quite happy for the past couple of years to work with the following contexts:

@Switzerland
@Germany
@Office
@Mac
@Agenda
@Waiting-for

You see, I used to live 50:50 in Germany and Switzerland. But since January, Iíve lived mostly in Germany and work from home Ė no office any more. In case itís important, Iím a writer and content editor.

Basically, most of my tasks ended up in @Mac as, well, I write on my Mac and access the various CMS from my Mac at home. In other words, the contexts didnít ďworkĒ for me any more. So I came up with contexts more reflecting my different mindsets when going to work, rather than physicalities:

@Official (for billing, taxes and whatnot)
@Writing
@Revision
@Work (CMS stuff and the like)
@Mac (backups, updates, beta testing, colour profiles, the works)
@Agenda
@Errands
@Waiting for

and I also kept:

@Germany
@Switzerland

for those tasks that I really only can work on when in one of those countries.

As you see Ė quite a lot of contexts. And Iím not too happy about it Ö Iíd rather have a maximum of perhaps five to six contexts to work with. Not ten of them.

Is anybody in a similar situation? Do you have any hints on what contexts I could merge or get rid of altogether? Or am I overly anal about it all, and lots of contexts is a good thing? Or should I follow a totally different road and, say, use time-of-day as contexts? As I tend to do similar tasks during the same hours?

Right now, my tasks are pretty nicely distributed amongst those contexts. @Germany and @Switzerland are empty, though, and have been for quite some time. Perhaps drop those two contexts?

Your help is much appreciated. :)

Cheers,
-Sascha
 
have you thought of sub groups for context


-- Mac
--- ---- billing
--- ----writing
--- ---- --- ---- check spelling
--- internet
--- ----research story
--- ----send story
--- ----listening to the baseball game


internet could be a sub group of Mac since you might have to be on the mac to access the internet
 
Still wrestling with contexts, but at the moment my list reads:
- Waiting
- Plan
- Contact (short calls or emails)
- Interview (long calls)
- Draft
- Edit
- OddJob
- Admin
- Consider (on hold)
- Note (on hold)

In truth, I find that I work via projects far more than contexts. When I'm working, I'm either at my computer, or I'm on assignment nowhere near my computer. I've found the easiest way to "chunk" jobs when I'm at my computer is use a project as a chunk, not a context--but I'm open to change.
Hadn't thought of sub-groups. Might give that a try.
 
I have the same issue. As a writer that works from home 80% of the time I am almost always at my Mac. As a result like Bashosfrog I spend most of my time in projects.

I am thinking of redoing my contexts to



People (assign to various people)
Write
Online (something that has to be done online)
Cities (something that has to be done in a specific city)
-- Houston
-- San Jose
-- New York
-- Boston
 
I was initially the same way about not wanting too many contexts, but the better I got at understanding and manipulating the perspectives and the view options (grouping, sorting, flags, etc.), that became less of an issue.

I have more than two dozen contexts. Some are nested within others so the sidebar isn't overcrowded, but the contents of those nested contexts will display when the perspective or view options call for something in one of those "hidden" nested contexts to appear.

The good news is, there are no irreversible decisions in Omni. You can create new contexts, projects, and perspectives and kill old ones, at will, and regroup your stuff into the new scheme. As a writer myself, I find that doing so is often preferable to actually dragging my brain to the keyboard to start writing <grin>.
 
Good morning,

thanks for your suggestions and examples! This makes me see contexts a bit more clearly. I think Iíll try to stick with the ten contexts I have right now (for the time being); if it gets too haphazard, Iíll nest some of the contexts.

Also thanks for the perspectives hint. Up to now, Iíve only had custom perspectives for my reviews and for flagged actions, nothing more. I think Iíll play with perspectives for a bit, see whether I can figure out something useful.

Again, thanks!

Cheers,
-Sascha
 
 


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