GOE: THE GREAT DONATIONCODER.COM 2006
GETTING ORGANIZED EXPERIMENT
- WEEK EIGHT -
FLYLADY'S TECHNIQUES II
Text and Assignment Written by DALLEEThe deadline for this assignment is November 5.
Week EIGHT Assignment: Practice the Techniques of FlyLadyText and assignment written by DALLEENOTE: This week’s assignments appear at the end of this post.
introduced FlyLady of www.FlyLady.net
, who addresses issues of “everyday life.” This week, we concentrate on two of the fundamental principles FlyLady brings to Getting Organized and the relationship of the Flying methodology to the systems of David Allen and GTD (“Getting Things Done”)
, as well as Mark Forster and DIT (“Do It Tomorrow”)
.1. FlyLady: Keep It Super Simple (“KISS”)
FlyLady emphasizes basic principles which are just that – Basic. FlyLady starts with developing a basic building block of new behavior and builds an organizational structure, piece by piece, upon that foundation to create habits and routines.
If you doubt the joy and utility of simplicity, read or re-read Art and the Zen of Web Sites
, and ponder the advice attributed to Obi-Web Kenobi, "Use the defaults, Luke. Use the defaults." And as you design your organizational system, consider the principles set forth in Art and the Zen of System Design
, including that the designer should “Make it easier to use the system than to not use the system.”
FlyLady proposes that you start household routines with a clean Kitchen Sink and let your progress spread from that point. Urging micromovements and babysteps, she recommends that you take the gradual approach. As she observes in “Take care of yourself first, rest will follow
”, “Be nice to yourself: don't pile on too much to do at one time. * * * * You have been following the ‘crash and burn model’ all your life. You know where that gets you!”2. Clutter Can Pop Up In Any Context
In her article “You just can't organize the clutter
,” FlyLady addresses household clutter and states “Anything can become clutter when you don't use it, don't love it, and you don't have a place for it. * * * * All [clutter] does is clog up our homes and our lives.” She concludes: “If you learn nothing else from me, I hope that these words will stick with you. You can't organize clutter; you can only get rid of it.”
That statement is indeed a basic truth: Organize only what adds to your life and dump the rest. No one puts it better than FlyLady: “You have tried to sort it, box it up, put it in plastic tubs, cram it into closets, fill up the garage and you have even rented rooms for your clutter! * * * * [You will have clutter in ] pretty silk boxes, plastic tubs and filled-to-overflowing closets [and eventually] all those boxes, tubs and closets throw up all over your cutesy organized clutter.” Hopefully, you are now convinced that trying to organize clutter is futile.
Clutter can invade your mind and your business practices
. FlyLady states: “[C]lutter keeps * * * * minds pulling * * * * in several directions at one time. You are never going to plow a field if the horses are pulling in two different directions. It is time to put on the blinders and use all your brain power on one thing at one time.” She recommends breaking a business plan into basic steps and “then establish simple habits for your morning, afternoon and evening to keep you on track with your grand plan.”
Even your organizational lists of things to do may contain clutter or clutter your life, requiring pruning to permit a balanced life to grow. In one succinct sentence, Suw Charman
advanced the thought that a list of to-dos should not occupy all your time: “When you accept that your To Do list is more like a Mobius Strip
than an actual list, you accept that it will never been finished” and will begin to attend to all the areas of your life.
FlyLady would say that you must find the essence and strip that which you find to be excess. Remember that safety, self-maintenance, security, and self-esteem, as well as a sense of belonging to a family or group, are the root life issues identified in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
and, as noted last week
, it is well accepted that self actualization and self transcendence can follow only after these basic human needs are addressed.3. Integration of FlyLady and Allen’s GTD Principles
We spent Weeks 2 and 3
of this Experiment with the Getting Things Done (GTD) System set out in David Allen's Book "Getting Things Done, The Art of Stress-Free Productivity
" (2001), focusing on the two major concepts of (1) getting things out of your mind and written down, and (2) formulating concrete "actionable" next steps for tasks you decide to undertake.
Blogger LG in Flylady and GTD: A Study of Similarities
presents a comparison of these two systems. Condensing those observations here, the blog finds substantial parallels:
“[Neither system has] beginners moves. You already know how to do everything you need to know to do GTD. Flylady says that there is no right way to do housework * * * * 4. Integration of FlyLady and Forster’s DIT PrinciplesWeeks 4 and 5
Once you're used to it, [both involve a] natural way to move. GTD does become second nature. Same with Flylady. She recommends building habits, one step at a time, so that things get done without my fully being aware of it. What this all boils down to, GTD and Flylady, is establishing good habits.
[Both handle] basic movement and resource allocation masterfully. GTD is flexible and scalable. So is Flylady. Everything you do with both systems can be ramped up to take on big projects, as well as handle the details.
[Both support] a peaceful and spontaneous way to move through the world, with minimal effort. Both systems are about gaining peace. * * * *
[Both] can be practiced. The more [you] rehearse, the better you get. The more I do my routines, the more they become second nature - for both systems.
* * * * GTD is not a system that insists you start with a grand purpose statement and decide your activities from that. In fact, it works in the opposite direction -- take care of and manage the tasks you are already committed to -- to free up time and energy for planning. * * * * Flying is about knowing what is outstanding, tackling it in a way that allows time for other things; it allows flexibility and a way to maintain the norm when circumstances impose on my life.
All in all, it's almost like GTD and Flying are the yin and yang; both made of the same substance, but approaching from different points of view -- one male, one female -- one business, one home.”
of this Experiment explored the ideas of Mark Forster and his newest book Do It Tomorrow and Other Secrets of Time Management
(January, 2006), stressing his recommendation of using a “closed list” of tasks for a day, working at least 5 minutes a day on your major current project (your “current initiative”), and taking control of routine tasks by doing them at a scheduled time (like checking email).
FlyLady and Forster have obvious similarities. Forster recommends concentrating on one new project at a time and developing a pattern of activity
: “Concentrating on one project at a time is a very good time management principle. You may remember that old music-hall turn, the Chinese spinning plates. The performer has a huge number of bamboo rods and the aim is to get a plate spinning on the end of each rod. A good performer can get thirty or more plates spinning at the same time. The way it is done is to get one plate spinning properly, then to move on to the next plate, then to the next. Go back to an earlier plate only when it starts to wobble.” He also favors make a 30 day commitment to a project
. Forster, like FlyLady, commends a timer as his favorite time management tool
(post of September 17, 2006).
Forster, when addressing the distinction between professional and domestic task organization
, said: “The principle of dealing with a backlog applies [to both]. Get your routine for domestic chores sorted first, and only then tackle the backlog. Define for yourself a minimum amount of tidiness etc that you want to maintain, and don't let yourself get paralysed by perfectionism.” 5. Assignment
Review the FlyLady assignment from Week 7
. Continue to work on any action routine you selected before or select now. Commit to bringing that activity into your life by practicing it for 28 days and until it is an actual habitual routine. Only one at a time! Monitor implementation, both during habit formation and thereafter.
Post on this week’s thread what everyday issues you have decided to address, the actions you are taking, and any reaction.