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Flashcards in Getting Things Done Deck (12)
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Three Things Go into Calendar:

Time Specific Actions- appointment.

Day Specific Actions- Need to do by a certain day, not necessarily at a time.

Day specific information- Information that will be useful on a certain date. Reminders of when something will be due, how to look up things to set up a lead time.


Next Action List:

Longer than two minute, non-delegatable action you have needs to be tracked somewhere. Break down by category-computer, errands, phone etc.



A desired Result accomplished in a year with more than one action step.
A placeholder to remind you to push forward with a task. Open Loops.


Daily Review

Calendar—things that need to get done that day

Next action—predefined actions that you can take if you have time during the day. If organized by context they’ll come into play when suitable

Projects, waiting for, someday/maybe lists need to be reviewed only as often as you think for you to stop thinking about them.


Weekly Review

All Projects, active project plans, next actions, agendas, waiting for and someday/maybe lists should be reviewed once a week.
-Gather and Process all Your stuff
-Review your system
-Update your lists
-get clean, clear, current, complete


Mind Like Water

There is always more to do than you can do, and you can do only one thing at a time. The key is to feel as good about what you are not doing as what you are doing in the moment.


A)Four Criteria Model For Choosing Actions in Moment

Context: Most actions require specific location or tool (computer, phone)

Time Available: When do you have to do something else?

Energy Available: Some tasks require more energy than others

Priority: Given the above factors, which action will give you the greatest pay off.


B) Threefold Model for Identifying Daily Work

Three kinds of work you can be engaged in:

--Doing Predefined work: Working from next actions and calendar, managing workflow.

—Doing Work as it shows up: Ad hoc actions that come up

—Defining your own work: Clearing your in tray, digital meeting notes and breaking down new projects into actionable steps. In processing inputs, you’ll no doubt be taking care of less than two minute actions and tossing and filing others. Identifying things that need to get done, not right away.


C) Six Level Model for Reviewing Work

Ground: Current Actions— Accumulated lists of all actions you need to take.

Horizon 1: Current Projects— Projects generate most of the actions that you have in front of you. Multistep short term outcomes.

Horizon 2: Areas of Focus and Accountabilities—Criteria to look at all actions

Horizon 3: Goals— What you want to be experiencing in your life and work one to two years from now.

Horizon 4: Vision— Projecting three to five years into the future to generate strategies about long term career, family, financial, and quality of life aspirations and considerations. Decisions at this level could change how you work at many levels

Horizon 5: Purpose and principles— Big picture view.Calling description of your work and why you are here. Core job description.


Ingredients of Relaxed Control

1. Clearly defined outcomes (projects) and the next actions required to move them towards closure, and

2 reminders placed in a trusted system that is reviewed regularly. Called horizontal focus.


Natural Planning Model

1. Defining Purpose and Principles: Never hurts to ask why. You are planning this project

It defines success

- It creates decision making criteria
- it aligns resources
- It motivates
- It clarifies focus
- It expands options

2. Outcome Visioning— what it will look like when done and successful.
3. Brainstorming

- Dont judge, challenge, evaluate or criticize,
- Go for Quantity, not quality
- Put analysis and organization in the background

4. Organizing

- Identifying significant pieces
- Sort by— components, sequences, priorities
- Detail to required degree

5. Identifying Next Actions

If you are waiting to have a good idea before any ideas, you won’t have any.


Decide on next actions for each moving part of the project
Decide on the next action of the planning process, if necessary.


Weekly Review:

Clear: Loose papers and materials. Put it all in your in tray

Get in to empty: All inbox delegated or space found.
Empty your head: writing any new projects, actions items, waiting for, that haven’t yet been captured and clarified.

Current: Review next action list: mark off completed actions. Review for reminders of further action steps to record.
review calendar data
review upcoming calendar
review waiting for list
review project/larger outcome list
review relevant checklist.

creative: someday maybe, put down ideas.

Bigger picture reviews—what changed