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Messages - momonan [ switch to compact view ]

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Yes.  He's also the author of the classic "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People," in which I read this comment from one successful executive (upon being asked his method for taking important action):  My motto is "ready, fire, aim."

I really liked being reminded that you don't have to be entirely ready before you fire off that action.  I have seen people who spend enormous time getting ready, then can't get that "aim" exactly right, so never "fire."  It's a good reminder that you don't have to get your aim exactly right before you fire -- both because you can fine-tune the aim after you fire and because you might actually hit something unexpected that is even better than what you were aiming for.

Anyway, I'm aiming a review of these ideas for the 4th or 5th week of our experiment.  Just let me know when is the best time to fire it off so I can put it on my TODO list to finish up. ;)

@app103.  Please cheer up

Whatever you were doing WORKED for you.  That's so great.  We love your programs, your energy and your creativity.  I hope you can forget all this and go right back.  These systems are only useful for those of us who are struggling with either not getting done what we think is important or not knowing what's important to do.

Maybe you can just ignore these struggling posts.  Or, if you want to participate, filling us in every once in a while on what gives you pleasure about what you do.

The Getting Organized Experiment of 2006 / Mark Forster & Do It Tomorrow
« on: September 19, 2006, 05:52 AM »
I have my synopsis/review of Steven Covey's "First Things First" book well underway, and I'm very excited at the possibilities it offers for deciding WHAT to do.  I'll post it once we've gone through the "Do It Tomorrow" phase of our experiment.

I'm wondering, though, if anyone else is having a problem getting a copy of Mark Forster's book(s).  I haven't been able to locate one yet (that would ship quickly), and I must confess that I don't have a good grasp on what his system entails.  Would anyone be willing to write up a (fairly detailed) description of what it's all about?  That would be tremendously helpful.

The book I have used for many years (although have sagged for some of the time) is Stephen Covey's "First Things First."  I highly value his ideas of making sure we are headed in the right direction before we take off.  He has you make out a mission statement (which takes hours) and then define areas of your life that are important to you.  No matter what else you put on your TO DO list, he reminds you not to forget those aspects of your life.

Since I'm really familiar with the ideas, I can do a review for week 4 or 5, if people think it would be helpful -- along with ways I think it could tie in with the other methods we have been trying.

Okay.  All fixed.  I contacted them and they have manually activated my account (with their apologies).  Done.

I signed up too, but never received my activation email (not in spam folder, either).  I asked for another one (after I checked that the address was correct), which they said they would send right away.  Still waiting.  Anyone else have this problem?

Just finished listening to the David Allen podcast.  Very dynamic and informative.  Great job on the interview, and fantastic editing by mukestar (you too, javajones, for your smooth intro :D).  Credits coming (although not nearly as much as you deserve :-*).

I'm surprised there aren't more additions to this thread.  Could it be that everyone is busy experimenting with  getting things done? :P

On a related note: In addition to the focus on GTD, one of the things I have been doing is keeping track of how I actually spend time and reviewing it for improvement.  What I knew -- but didn't want to face -- was the tremendous amount of wasted procrastinating time I spend at the computer: browsing, games, just-one-more news site, etc.  Just like it's not good money management to spend thousands of $$ a year on Starbucks (or other brand) coffee, this is not good time management.

As Nudone said, by making a TODO list (and not putting "waste time on meaningless computer browsing" on it), it helps me think of something that would really be better to be doing every time I get that urge.

Another thing that is working for me is App103's InstantBoss  I set it to work for 30 minutes with 5-minute breaks.  Then I race to get coffee, etc. and waste a little time, before it reminds me to get back to work.  Then after 5 of these sessions, I get a little applause and can relax for a while before starting again.

I'm still struggling with knowing WHAT to do, but I'm zeroing in on a method -- which will be a topic for a later post.  Good luck everybody.

Living Room / Re: Hi
« on: September 09, 2006, 09:41 AM »
Very glad to see you again, Allen.  We missed you -- not to mention those wonderful quotations you hand out. :D

Here are some questions going to the broader purpose of what we want to do:

1.  In a system, like GTD, that focuses so much on random thoughts put into a "TODO" format, what do you recommend a person do to make sure he/she is concentrating enough time and energy on the things that are really important for quality of life?

I'm thinking things like family, relationships, health, giving back to community, affecting the larger world.

2.  Is the GTD system compatible with the "First Things First" principles of Stephen Covey?  If so, can he explain how?

3.  Does he have any suggestions, within the GTD system, for ways we can stay focused on the things that matter most to us -- rather than just the things we have to do, or the things that happen to pop into our minds that we might want to do?

What is the single greatest obstacle people encounter that prevents them from doing the things that matter most to them?

Some examples, if he needs prodding:

1.  Not enough time?
2.  Outside forces or responsibilities?
2.  Don't know how to do the thing that matters most?
3.  Failure (or inability) to define what matter most?
4.  Deceiving themselves about what matters most?

I understand he does coaching, too.  In his experience, what types of people are most likely to

1,  become interested in the GTD method?
2.  benefit from the GTD method?
3.  stick to the GTD method?

Some examples of "types of people," to get you started:

1.  people who are already naturally organized / people who are chronically disorganized
2.  people who have no control over their work environment / people who are self-employed
3.  people who go to an office every day / people who work at home
4.  people who work for a living / people who are either retired or do not work, but have many responsibilities or projects, or both.
5.  younger people / older people
6.  business people / creative artists
7.  like working with computers / hate working with computers

Living Room / 100 questions
« on: September 09, 2006, 09:05 AM »
You probably all know about this project in Berlin -- where people from around the world are asked provocative questions.  But, just in case, you can see live streaming here:

Has anyone on DC been by there to see what's it's like?

Thanks for the thumbnail review of GTD.  Very helpful.  :up:  I've been going in a different direction entirely: trying to sort out not just what to do, but what's important to do.  But now I realize it would be a good idea to step back and make sure I know HOW to do what I want to do.  It seems like it will be useful to get a handle on the GTD methods first, then apply them to my larger scheme.

Also, since I spent most of the morning browsing the computer and otherwise fooling around, I have another brief review to conduct, that I hope will be helpful.  When I was trying to get a handle on budgeting my money, I took some time first to just jot down how I was actually spending it.  This revealed huge gaping sinkholes, which I was later able to close up.  That's the way I feel about time, how.  Unlike the money situation, I don't have several months to get to the bottom of it.  I can spend at least a few days keeping track, though.  Of course, I know I waste a lot of time.  But I want to see it in writing:  how much time each day (how many actual HOURS) do I spend doing nothing useful (not even successfully recreating), and what is it spent on.   Maybe I can chisel away at it and then even include a finite amount of time for this activity (with the help of app103's "instant boss"?) before moving on to my real TODO list (or after).

How about WhatToDo?  WTD.   

I'm with you, urlwolf.  Most of us have no difficulty thinking of things to do -- far more things than we can possibly accommodate in a lifetime.  That's why I'm hoping NOT to just make a list of things to do and start doing them.  My hope is that I can evaluate what is really important to me and make sure I'm able to do them.

To help me with this, I'll be working on putting "First Things First," as laid out by Stephen Covey (author of "7 Habits of Highly Effective People") and two of his disciples in a book they wrote about 10 years ago.  I'll report how I'm doing as we go along.  I will still need to figure out a good way of getting the things done that I decide are important, so I am looking forward to reading everything that is working for each of us.

So many good ideas, so far.  Hearing the DETAILS really helps.

Okay, I'm ready, too.  I'm going to try a zen approach, which means making sure my immediate environment is welcoming and uncluttered (only took 10 minutes of frantically putting things away -- or at least somewhere else).  Feels good.  I also have a small notebook for planning and evaluating my progress.  Cards, etc., too.

Lastly, I have app103's handy "instant boss," which is friendly, and it seems to help me to know I can take that break if I can manage to concentrate on working for 30 minutes (or whatever amount of time I set).  Got more than usual done today.  We'll see.

Great job on the newsletter, Mobysaurus.  What an awesome contribution to the site. :Thmbsup:  It's really good to get the communication -- especially in such a rich and useful format.  Some DonationCredits coming your way. :)

Living Room / Re: What is a genius?
« on: September 03, 2006, 11:18 AM »
Thank you, app103, for sharing these great finds with us.  :Thmbsup:  I especially loved this one -- as well as following up on the longest line and the ideas of Clifford Pickover.  Certainly encourages us to stretch our imaginations.

Living Room / Re: how tall is Cody?
« on: September 02, 2006, 04:12 PM »
BTW, app103.  what's that team thing at the bottom of your signature?  Have you explained it before and I missed it?

Living Room / Re: how tall is Cody?
« on: September 02, 2006, 04:10 PM »
app103.  You're so right!  Seeing it this way even makes the "people" more likeable.  I didn't really like thinking they represented actual people, but I love seeing them as little toys that are peeping up with things to say to Cody, who might be about the size of a hand-held plush toy of indeterminate size.  Makes Cody seem wise, but still cuddly.

Living Room / Serendipity
« on: September 02, 2006, 12:59 PM »
mrainey's story of how he overcame math block to go on to code math-related programs was inspirational.  See here:  https://www.donation...38.msg35178#msg35178

Made me wonder how many of the other members of this site have had careers that followed unpredictable, serendipitious, paths.  It would really be good for the people just starting out to hear how hanging on and paying attention to chance circumstances can lead to unexpected pleasures.  Anyone have a story to share?

Absolutely great story, mrainey.  Really shows the power of continuing the search to find a path that works, and the wonderful magic of serendipity.  Inspirational. :Thmbsup:

Oddly enough, I have done almost the same thing as mouser -- choosing an analog approach like the ancient one humorously described at   

Building your first Hipster PDA
get a bunch of 3"x5" file cards
clip them together with a binder clip
there is no step 3

At least it's a start.  With any program I have attempted, I spent so much delectible time setting up and maintaining it that I barely had time to do more than click on the annoying reminders as they come up.  With all that activity, who has time to do the things on the list?

I also have dragged out an old copy of "First Things First" that I bought almost 10 years ago.  It is written by Roger and Rebecca Merrill, two disciples of Stephen Covey, the author of "7 Habits of Highly Effective People," and really brings home the notion that real effective time management is not doing more things in less time, but, rather, doing the most important things in a balanced and effective way.

So my task will be to determine what areas of my life deserve the most focus -- work, family, physical and mental health, financial, society -- and then plan my "to do" lists to make sure I devote sufficient time to each area.  I think it's easy to get hung up on scheduling to death the ideas and things we want to do in the business or work area, and forget the other important areas of our lives.  As they say: No one ever regretted, on their death bed, that they didn't spend more time working.  I didn't manage it before, but I'm ever hopful this time.

Living Room / Re: Money tips for Students — much needed advice!
« on: September 01, 2006, 09:44 PM »
My personal favorite used to be called cheapskate monthly, now   See http://www.cheapskat...outus_cheapskate.asp  for an explanation.

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