I just completed David Allen’s excellent book, Getting Things Done:The Art of Stress-Free Productivity. I found that some of his tips I do instinctively, yet perhaps not yet naturally, but this book helped me apply practical principles to time management. Plus, he shows us that it’s not always easy to get to “what is the next action?” in collaborative environments. Much discussion may go into that very question.
I love to be very busy, and the Getting Things Done book helps me realize that I’m as busy as many others, and perhaps less busy than some. He even says that you can have as many as 50 Next Action items on your list when you combine work and home actions and projects. What a relief it was to read that! I’m not overly busy or scheduled, I’m merely able to write down what it is that needs to happen next. I also found it a relief to keep all home and work action items in one place.
My favorite description of the natural instinctive planning process that some people can hold in their brains comes from This Woman’s Work, Dawn Friedman’s blog. She’s a writer and mom in Columbus, Ohio. The post is titled “Life inside my head” and my favorite sentence has to be this:
“Then there’s baby wardrobe — if I use the really good all-in-one dipe to take her to grandma’s then I won’t have it for the playdate tomorrow, which is ok except the other ones are a wee bit leaky so I should use the regular poofy diapers and then I’ll need to put her in the other outfit with a big enough tush but that one is maybe a tad too warm so I better check the weather forecast before I make a move at all.”
Sheer parenting inventory time management awesomeness. What are some of your favorite examples of extreme time and resource management?