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GTD emotional "Bankruptcy"/Starting Over - Advice please? Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
I need some good advice here:

I'm not checking Omnifocus- and I know why. I've got too many projects hiding as actions...it's doing the job wrong, because I screwed up. I'm a GTD'er three years before OF, and I've been using it since the beta.

The truth is - I'm avoiding OmniFocus (which is on all of my devices.) I'm cheating with text files etc.

I want to declare GTD Bankruptcy (like email bankruptcy) and slowly start over.

I'd like to be able to start from scratch, with the immediate forest fires - but be able to reference my existing OF database (to integrate what's GOOD). And no, I don't think a printout/PDF is the way to go.

I would certainly love any/all thoughts/comments on the best way to go about this. I'm going to start it tomorrow in the AM.
 
Export your existing database as an OmniFocus document. Call it "Baggage from the past" or something suitable :-)

Now delete everything in your database, and start afresh. When you want to look at the old stuff, just double-click on the file on the desktop and it will open in OmniFocus as a separate document. You can drag and drop actions or projects over to the new file if you decide you want them back.
 
Collecting and organizing projects are fun and all but you'll be learning to do the Weekly Review soon.

The initial GTD euphoria occurs when you've captured everything that you have into OmniFocus during the capture phase. All those tasks get organized and placed into projects and single-task lists.

But you'll always be in capture mode and adding more tasks and projects to an ever-growing OmniFocus list.

During the weekly review, you'll have to set time aside to determine what projects you really want to work on for the next week. Flag those and focus on those tasks first.

Learn to be a vicious editor during the Weekly review. Take a realistic look at all of your projects and determine what can really be done this week and what can wait until the next weekly review. Set all the other projects to "On Hold" status. If you want, you can also move those "on hold" projects to a Someday/Maybe folder. The only projects that should have an "active" status should be the ones you are willing to work on this week. Be realistic about your capabilities.

I have a lot of projects that i want to work on but I know I can focus on my Three Big Rocks of the week. Google the internet for "Three Big Rocks". I believe it is mentioned by Stephen Covey of the 7 Habits fame.

But you should also start dropping projects that sounded cool when you first captured them but you have decided they are no longer relevant or will just take too much of your time/energy to accomplish.

Once a month, I'll do a project purge. There will be some projects that will have been in OmniFocus for a long time. I have to look to see if i need to reword the Next Actions to see if they align with my goals. Sometimes just rewording the Next Actions will help provide better clarity about why I am keeping this project in OmniFocus.

If a project no longer aligns with my goals then I would just drop or delete it. It no longer becomes relevant.

There will be times when the light bulb in my head lights up and I'll have a totally brilliant idea. I capture it to OmniFocus and I flesh out the project. But after a week or more, I look at that great idea and suddenly realize that this is way more than I can handle. I sometimes need to offload this project and delegate to someone else who has the better skill set and time for it.

Other times, I'll look at a project and think to myself "what was I thinking?" It may have sounded good at the time. But upon closer examination, it does not align with my higher horizons of focus or goals in my life. Maybe I was a volunteer for a charitable event for a long time. But as time goes on, I discover that my heart is no longer into the charitable event or cause because I have been ignoring something else in my life. So I know I'll have to quit one project to take on another project. If I try to juggle the previous commitment and the next commitment, I'll most likely fail because I have too much to work on.

OmniFocus' review perspective is a great tool to use. You can set review interval dates for each project. The default setting is to review every week. But some projects don't need to be reviewed weekly. Some can be set for 1 month, 3 months, or even longer.

When you highlight a project, you can click on the "Marked as Reviewed" button on your toolbar if you have it showing, hit Command-Shift-R or select "Mark Reviewed" in the Edit menu. This will set the next review date for the selected project.


Google the internet for articles on Weekly Review. The Weekly Review is when I put on my editor's hat and start trimming the fat and leaving the good stuff on the plate.
 
Here's an article on how to juggle multiple projects. Perhaps you have way too many projects than you really need/want?

http://getitdone.quickanddirtytips.c...-projects.aspx
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by whpalmer4 View Post
Export your existing database as an OmniFocus document. Call it "Baggage from the past" or something suitable :-)

Now delete everything in your database, and start afresh. When you want to look at the old stuff, just double-click on the file on the desktop and it will open in OmniFocus as a separate document. You can drag and drop actions or projects over to the new file if you decide you want them back.
This worked great! Thanks!
 
It was less about having too much (I had specific project ideas on hold) as much as having large sections that needed to be focused - that I hadn't taken enough time to properly flesh out and yet were my responsibilities.

Leading to avoidance of my favorite tool!

Nowhere does David Allen (or anyone else) really address doing weekly reviews when overloaded and exhausted.

On a separate note, I wish OF had better handling of reminders of the 'why' for each Project.

Thanks again for your thoughts and advice.
 
I have thoroughly read two of David Allen's books — Getting Things Done and Ready for Anything. There is almost no conceptual overlap between his work and that of Peter Drucker or Edward de Bono. Drucker and Allen don't even agree on productivity.

Drucker's claim to fame: How the real world works. He recommended having two major projects of 18 to 24 month duration. Projects that need doing and make a contribution to the goals and objectives of your organization. When you finish don't go to number 3 on your list. Stop and see what needs doing as the result of your projects. Previous is probably a dangerous oversimplification
  1. Contents of books by Drucker — his conceptual range.
  2. Preface to The Effective Executive What needs doing!
  3. Chapter 2 Know Thy Time in the EE
  4. World is Full of Options — major implications.
  5. Living in More Than One World
  6. TLN Key Links productivity links in several places.
 
One simple piece of advice that has helped me a great deal: Put more items on hold.

Make your Active Projects only things that you plan to work on this week, and place everything else on hold. During your weekly review, activate projects that you want to work on in the week ahead.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cameron View Post
One simple piece of advice that has helped me a great deal: Put more items on hold.
QFT. This is a crucial thing for me.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rtebiz View Post
...
  1. Contents of books by Drucker — his conceptual range.
  2. Preface to The Effective Executive What needs doing!
...
Unfortunately, trying to decipher the disheaveled presentation on these two Web pages alone made my head hurt. I had to stop ... it was becoming ineffective and unproductive to continue. Likely then, I missed something important in wanting to understand the gist of the presentation.

--
JJW
 
 


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