I started reading Dave Allens “Getting Things Done” a while back. Ironically, I didn’t finish it.
Many people have joined this particular cult, and I am about to don the robes and drums and heading for the nearest airport.
Though I still haven’t finished the book, my initial impression of of the idea made a difference to me.
It’s not an entirely strange concept to me; it reminds me very much of the way I used to keep organized before I started disengaging myself from my palm PDA.
My old palm had a long period of increasing strangeness before I finally sent it in for repairs and proceeded to fight the 4 month battle to get it back.
Before this time, I was used to putting all my appointments in it, all my tasks on the todo list, all my addresses in the address book and so on. I was highly dependent on it.
After I got it back from repairs, I couldn’t really get used to using it again. It never really caught on.
I suspect it was because I didn’t really make an effort and didn’t see the value of using it. I seem to have forgotten that getting used to using a palm is kind of like using vim – it’s a pain in the ass in the beginning, but when it really becomes comfortable to use, it’s quite a lot more useful than it’s simpler counterparts. Of course, this is very much a matter of personal taste. Usually the PDA/pad choice is a matter of whether you value the analogue niceness of a pad over the organizing, syncing and editing capabilities of a PDA.
In the year or so since I read (part of) the book, I’ve had great use of one of the central ideas in the book – externalizing your to-dos in a reliable system that you are often in contact with.
Some months back, I decided to start getting comfy with more of the whole GTD methodology, and tried out some different software packages relating to GTD, eventually settling on OmniFocus a couple of days ago.
During easter I got both my entire inboxes processed and a heap of little pesky things done.
Over the next months, I’ll try to get into the methodology to a greater extent, and I’ll make it an action item to write about it once in a while.
Who knows, maybe I’ll even finish the book.