Having all your system well organized will allow you to always have clear which stuff is more important or relevant, easily locate the information you need and choose the best action to get done at all times.
Most of the time, simple tasks can be organized while you are clarifying them, since you are forced to think about them at that time. This is why you have the opportunity to update the text, set tags, reminders and the time and energy needed, in the Clarify stage.
Actually, you can organize every item of your system at any time. You can edit any element in an action list by clicking on it, and then; type the tags and contexts you need, add notes or set a checklist. In addition, each item has a set of options that allows you to move it to the appropriate list, in case it is not located where it should.
By clicking on the calendar icon you can assign—or eliminate—the date the action has to be carried out. If you assign a date to a task in the Next Actions list, it will be automatically moved to the Calendar. Similarly, if you clear the date of a task in the Calendar list, it will be moved to the Next Actions list.
Make sure you tick the “Calendar” (1) box below in order to effectively move the action. Otherwise, it will stay in your Next Actions list even though it has a date attached to it.
In the Next Actions list, you can set the required time and energy for every action, and whether it is urgent or not. These parameters will help you choosing the next action to perform.
How to organize everything
- It is very important to set the particular context required for your actions, that is, the tool or location needed to complete it (
#calls, etc…). Later on, you will decide what to do depending on the context you are in. You can use multiple contexts if needed (e.g.,
- If it is a work that requires more than one action, make sure it is part of a project to get that result. Create the project if it does not exist or add the action to the project if it already exists (to do this, edit the action and select the project in the Perspective section).
- If you are going to delegate an action, tag it with the name of the person or entity responsible for it (
@mary). This way, you can filter the pending actions of each collaborator.
- If you have many items in certain lists—it usually happens, over time, in the Someday/Maybe and Reference Material lists—you should classify them into categories for easy reference. How? Of course, with tags. You can use more than one to define subcategories within a category.
- It can be useful to indicate what tasks in the Next Actions list require little time or little energy to be done. This allows you to filter them quickly if you have little time available or you are not in your best mood.
- Finally, if something should be done on a specific date or you want to rethink about it later, give it a due date or a reminder.