I often get questions about how to get started with GTD. If you never heard of GTD before, Google the phrase “Getting Things Done by David Allen”. Go ahead, read about GTD and I’ll be here when you’re ready.
While you performed that search, you probably saw links to articles on how to get started with GTD. Ok, I’m really late into the game. I can find a lot of detailed materials on how to GTD on the internet.
But here are quick tips on how to get started with GTD.
1. Read the book. I know, there’s nothing quick about purchasing, waiting for the delivery, and finally reading the book. But that’s the only way you can really grasp about the GTD concept. There’s no shortcut to that. David Allen is making millions of dollars on it. Here’s my amazon affiliate link to the book: Getting Things Done by David Allen. You’ll make me 50 cents richer. Thank you.
2. Incrementally apply the concept. It will probably take you a couple of days to read and fully understand the GTD concept. It took me a week to finish the book. Hey, I have a real job. Three years later, I’m still trying to learn how to fully incorporate GTD in my life. It’s not easy but you’ll get there with consistency.
3. The power of purge. Purging is a skill you have to learn. And I’m not kidding. Before you can fully adapt to the GTD lifestyle, you must learn the art of purging. Purge daily.
4. GTD is not a tool. Search online and you’ll come up with tens of so-called “GTD tools”. There is no such thing as GTD tools. You use tools to manage your Inbox, or stuff that lands in your slate. Of course, you know what I mean by “Inbox” if you read the GTD book. It’s not your email inbox. GTD is not To-Do list either.
5. Automate if you can’t go paperless. Paper trail can complicate your GTD life. If you have paper in your workflow now, find a way to automate the processes involved. If you automate most of your tasks, it will be easier for you to adopt the GTD lifestyle
6. Mind like water. Study what it means.
7. Be consistent. Once you’re on the GTD zone, you’ll never go back. So practice consistency. Learn about dedication.
8. Learn the 80/20 Principle. Eliminate the things that you don’t need. 80% of your success comes from 20% of your effort. 80% of what sucks in your life now come from 20% of something you’re doing. Find those out. What’s the 20% that’s giving you 80% of your happiness. That’s maybe an activity, a relationship, a task, or whatever. Multiply the positive stuff.
9. Eliminate unneeded baggage. Purging is one thing; eliminating is another. Learn the difference. Cut activities that are not yielding values. Look for that 20%.
10. Dominate the world. Your world could mean your calendar or deadlines, or particular tasks, or a nagging boss. Be in control. Stay on top.
Photo Courtesy of flickr user wibbly pig