phase one: collection

ok, this week we are kicking into the actual meat and potatoes of Getting Things Done. Today we are still collecting all the stuff for the “inbox”. This is a big job and it is all happening on the kitchen table….

the collected “stuff” 

the collected “stuff” form the other angle- this is the space – drummond is in it for scale purposes.

i am also on the tail end of doing a “mind sweep” getting everything down, i have used up one and half note books already. – note – in collecting everything i have found at least 8 A4 notebooks and 4 or so smaller notebooks in various states of use, plus 2 other new Spirax A4 notebooks and 3 other new A4 notebooks… i think i have a notebook addiction folks.

deciding on the GTD tool…

as a total newcomer to all things “Getting Things Done” –
and as someone who likes to do a bit of researching into stuff-
i have been bamboozled by the amount of GTD information is out there.
the overwhelming problem –for me at this beginner stage– is with a lot of the writers assumption that you have been down with the programme for years and know the content back to front… {like say merlin mann}
now i know that all this amazing information will be great in a few weeks, months, years, but right now i am just looking for the simple help.

in the same light i am looking for a simple application that will help with the GTD process. there is about 247 “solutions” out there, some are online versions, others offline, most for windows, and some good ones for my apple mac world. trying to winnow out the wheat from the chaff with these app’s is tricky.
some cost big bucks {big bucks for a broke photographer like me} others are free. some look like it will take weeks just to learn how to use the app, others look even harder!

my man Aaron, is basically the opposite as me in his needs with this, he is a windows PC man who is looking for an online solution, and the last we talked i think he has found his solution.

as for me: i don’t want to have any “coding/scripting/nerd” skills required to understand the app – i just want a streamlined, simple to use, free or cheap as free, GTD processing machine.

i am the hunter.

2007… my only resolve.

my life -at this point in time- is a mess.

now don’t get me wrong, i am happy, my family life is loving and beautiful, my spiritual life is strong, and i have wonderful friends all over the world.
but my life- my “stuff” is out of control.
my work, ideas, projects, thoughts, plans, “to do’s”, finances etc = chaos.
i currently work for Siegfried but i want to work for Max.

i’ve been thinking about why? and there are a bunch of reasons:
i am one of those people who can do alot of stuff.
i love to photograph, draw, paint, write, review, design, talk, plan….
and {without sounding like i have tickets on myself} i can do all my stuff well, and i tend to think that i can do it better than most people out there.
what this ends up meaning is:
a} i am not great at delegating.
b} i take way too much on.
it can be scary….
another factor for me is left to my own devises, with no outside requests, just me living life, i end up with lists of ideas and projects i’d like to do, both for business and just for me… so when you add in outside requests and responsibilities, my “to do” list becomes totally unwieldily.
another sad factor is i am as happy as the proverbial pig in mud when i have no other responsibilities and i can just doodle away my time “organizing and sorting”. i get this form of “homebody-ness” from my mother. {who is at this moment down at her mothers -my grandma’s- sorting out cupboards and wardrobes full of stuff}. there is nothing like the mildly autistic pleasure derived from organizing CD’s, magazines, books etc that explains why my iTunes collection – which is over half way to filling up an external 300 gig hard drive – of 27,750 songs from 1,089 artists over 2,209 albums – all has the correct album artwork, labeling and spelling etc. iTunes for me is all at once the greatest application and the biggest time eater ever. sad confession: i have actually fantasized about taking a week or two off and just “working” on my iTunes library – getting it perfect with every possible field completed. sigh….

so… add those four factors together:
i am able.
i have talents.
i create and take on too much.
i love to diddle away “sorting stuff”.
and that equals me; a mess of stuff wanting way more attention than i can give it.

even when i do get “busy” and write up lists and “to do’s” and i begin working on the items, my brain is continually throwing up other random projects or things that i have to do… it is like some strange little crazy man in the corner of my mind just yelling out unrelated things that are floating in my “things to do” cosmos…. it’s getting worse every week.

there has been lots of wonderful excuses since christmas 2004 when we moved out of wonderful little headquarters at 109 hope street in west geelong, victoria and we then spent up until recently moving between family up here and down there… even now we are still waiting for the couple to move out so we can move into the great old house we are going to rent in central southport…. but all that is just excuses and {as a wise man used to tell me}excuses never solve problems. my real problem is me.



i have been doing some homework and have discovered through the wonderful american nerdLeo Laporte a strange little man in San Francisco called merlin mann. {“seriously his name is merlin?!”}

Merlin runs an website/blog 43 folders which is {in his words} “a family of websites about personal productivity, “life hacks,” and simple ways to make your life a little better.”

Thanks to Merlin i found “Getting Things Done” a book by David Allen. Now i have found a complete cult style following around this book. it is the GTD movement…
i am a bit weary of “movements” and the like, but i think this programme might be the ticket.


that is where i am at; at the start. i have the book and i have merlin’s 43 folders site and podcast.
and i have this blog to journal my progress.
and by a strange “coincidence” i have one my local best mates Aaron Spence who has embarked on this journey at the same time too! trippy man.

i’ll keep those of you who care updated.
this is my one and only resolution for 2007. to radically change the way i live by becoming really organized…
should be easy peasy! ha ha