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Getting Things Done in the New Year | Boddicker Performance

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Getting Things Done in the New Year

by on Jan 3rd, 2011

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With the New Year comes lots of goals, which often present the unique challenge of being forced to handle new commitments on top of a person’s pre-existing commitments.  For example, the average man wants to exercise 5 times a week on top of going to work and taking care of his family or the fitness professional wants to write an extra blog post each week on top of a full slate of clients.

It is at this juncture of doing “more” where failure to adhere occurs most.  In essence, the “need to do” (work, for example) takes priority over the “nice to do” (exercise, for example).  The “need to do’s” will not disappear, however, with greater efficiency and use of time, it is possible to open up more time for the “nice to do’s.”

In my pursuit of the best year, I’ve taken to attempting to optimize my economy of work so as to get the most out of my mental faculties and my ever-lessening free time.  Inspired by my brother, I’ve in the last few months been implementing David Allen’s Getting Things Done methodology with great content.

In brief, the GTD methodology is a process which seeks to free up all of your mental space to dedicate it toward a specific task, helps you organize your plan of attack, and I’ve found it significantly enhances my ability to get work done.  In this process, I’ve been utilizing three pieces of software that have really made the process effective.

1. Evernote.

Evernote is one of my collection buckets that allows me to catalog texts, photos, documents of all kinds, and other random thoughts under a searchable tag.  It is an excellent way to keep me from forgetting important pieces of information or losing ideas.  One of its greatest values to me is its ability to store papers under “topics” for quick reference in writing or so I do not lose them in the shuffle after they are sent to me.

Evernote Main

I am a Premium user which allows me to store 500MB per month, but the free version is probably adequate if you’re not processing lots of pdfs or other high density documents like videos and photos. Check it out in greater detail by clicking the logo on the left.

From Evernote, utilizing my task manager for keeping track of blog writing, program writing, e-mails, phone calls, etc becomes quite easy.

2.  OmniFocus.

OmniFocus is a task manager that allows you to list “to dos” and then delineate steps to execute your GTD methodology.  The crux of the task manager is to clear your mind of all “clutter” so you have all of your cognitive faculties and are free of distraction so you can systematically approach your requisite tasks.

Manage Projects with OmniFocus

OmniFocus allows you to list “to dos” and break them into steps and list them into contexts that allow you to accomplish things more efficiently.  While it seems obvious, accomplishing all tasks requiring e-mail simultaneously is likely more efficient than answering e-mails strictly as it relates to an individual project.  The same can be said for errands, readings, etc.

3.  Concentrate.

Concentrate is a great application that allows me to focus on getting things done.  When combined with the Pomodoro Technique (chunking periods of focused work with short breaks), I find that it really allows me to cut out the clutter and keep my mind on task.

Focus on Your Work Now.

For those with Computer ADD, it does a great job eliminating distractions and you can set it to only allow you access to specific programs and block access to others.  If you’re to be writing a blog and not surfing blogs, you can organize the program to open your website’s back office, block your competitors, and allow you to have Evernote open where you have collected your notes and outlines.

Give it a try and let me know how it works for you!

Regards,

Carson Boddicker

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Leave a Comment »1 Comment
  • Sam Leahey January 4, 2011

    Good points indeed, Carson. I’ve struggled to find PC equivolents in the past for some of those applcations but it hasn’t held me back yet. Keep up the good work!

    All the best,
    Sam

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