Basic GTD

Basic GTD: Organizing actions

AUTHOR: Francisco Sáez

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Once you have processed every action, the next step is to organize them in a way that is logical for you, so you can review them easily when you have time.

Actions to be done at a specific date or time go to the Calendar. These actions are typically detected at the time of processing. Resist the urge to add to the Calendar actions you’d like to do that day. You must think of the Calendar as a sacred territory that reflects your inevitable commitments of every day.

If an action must not be done at a given time, then it should be done as soon as possible and it goes to Next Actions. The best way to organize this kind of actions is to assign them the proper context to execute them. This context is just the tool, location, person or situation needed to carry out an action.

The definition of these contexts is totally dependent on your lifestyle, but some of the most common are #house, #office, #computer, #calls, #errands and #read.

When you are in the mood to make #calls, it is important to have the phone number handy, written in the same item. Sometimes it is useful to divide the context #errands in sub-lists grouped by geographical areas. Some people—your boss, partner, spouse, etc.—can be treated as contexts so you can go over the things related to them the next time you talk to them.

If you are not the right person to perform the action, it must go to your Waiting for list. Jot down the person responsible in each item and review the progress of these actions as often as necessary.

This is the first of three articles related to organization:

  1. Organizing Actions
  2. Organizing Projects
  3. Organizing non-actionable data

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