Getting Stuff Done

I read this really great book the other day about getting yourself organized. It had some great advice and I’d like to share some of it with you.

First of all, you need to start with the understanding that our brains are made for organizing and thinking, not for storing. So if we are going to be able to think clearly we need a safe place to hold all the odd tasks our brain is constantly trying to manage. This takes up more energy than we realize because our subconscious is holding onto it, bringing it up without us even realizing, in order to not lose it. So if we want to be free to think clearly and without all these little interruptions from our brain, we need a collection bucket. And it needs to be trusted by us.

There are a few keys to doing this right:

  • You need to empty your bucket regularly, or else it becomes disorganized and can’t be trusted.
  • When you empty is out, your stuff needs to go in the right places, so stay organized
  • Keep all your current projects in a project list
  • Use that project list to break the projects down into actionable items and put them on a next actions list. This is much more helpful than a daily to do list because we aren’t good at estimating how long it takes to do many actions.
  • Keep a waiting for list for all those items that you have passed on to someone else and are still awaiting a response. This also frees up your brain not to worry about checking back on them.
  • And finally, put all your day-specific stuff like doctor appointments onto a calendar.

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