How Do I Decide What To Do?

How do I decide what to do ? When to do it ? and Where to do it?

Without stepping into the muddy waters of priority matrix-es; let us just say, I completed my weekly review today; and I have a solid handle on my goals for the first time in a few weeks.

I have found the weekly review to be the linchpin that ties it all together, every time I miss a review everything falls apart.

I spent a few days doing some higher level thinking as well and read a book called the 12 Week Year; it’s a great tool for clarifying quarterly goals, although I would not recommend applying  every tool in the book verbatim.  The primary paradigm was an epiphany for me.

Since starting Getting Things Done, my biggest problem has been selecting the right context lists for organizing my Next Actions.  A lot of the contexts that I have used in the past have sent my brain cycling out of control as each list was not discreet enough. Eric Mack and David Allen call this part of defining the hard edges of your system.

I recently heard a great teleseminar on GTD Connect where Kelly Forrister described the best way to define your next action list if all the default ones are not working for you. She suggested brainstorming lists by deconstructing all your major actions by people, places, tools and activities. As Kelly suggested I did a giant brainstorming session making a list of all the possible context lists I could ever want to use. I came up with more than I could possibly count.   I then narrowed down my lists from there. Here my complete list of contexts in IBM Notes as of today:

My Context Lists


Any Feedback would be greatly appreciated at this point. What lists do you find working for you?

How Do I Decide What To Do?

2 Responses

  1. I use Wunderlist app for my lists and have different categories. So when I have time I look in there and for example under Drawing list I have few ideas of new technique I would like to try or what I would like to draw. Same with Blog posts – I have few dozens of ideas there. These list get longer every week. As soon as I have a light bulb moment on something, I take out my phone and put it in one of the categories or create a whole new category. Besides work and play I have a list of places I would like to check out and new restaurants I’ve heard of.

    Kat March 17, 2014 at 8:54 pm #
    • This awesome! I use the lists for refence in my memos application too –really helps with writing .

      Jason August 24, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

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