I wrote about David Allen’s influence before, in “‘I am a freedom junky’ — David Allen’s inspiring words that simplified my life,” which describes how I implemented his system of getting things done.
His words and advice regularly come to mind and help me. They did recently when an email that would have stressed and burdened me had I not known his system.
I had his book and a camera handy and tell the story of my taking a risk offending him when I met him and, instead, learning more about the book and its purpose than I could have otherwise.
How to implement Getting Things Done
Read his book for the full version, but copying the important parts from my earlier post:
I boiled the process down to creating a system once and for all for how to sort stuff coming into your life without worrying you might lose something valuable.
- If I can do it in a couple minutes, do it.
- If it’s worth doing later, put it in a place I don’t have to worry about.
- If it’s not worth doing, get rid of it.
I boiled down the storage part to:
- I keep my inbox to a few items overnight.
- A to-do list on my computer (a text file).
- A calendar on my computer.
- Paper mail worth responding to goes into a pile on my kitchen counter that never gets to more than a few items.
- The rest worth keeping goes into files on my computer or two milk-crate-like file holders in my closet, which is basically taxes, receipts of things I might return, and letters from people I like.
My result: mental freedom. That’s why I recommend it.
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