I finished Getting Things Done last night, thanks to snow on the ground and more time to read. The last 3 chapters of the book show how practical organization can lead to greater accomplishments.
He had some profound things to say about procrastination, but I'll have to blog about that later. What I want to do today is collect all my "stuff" and put it in my in-box. Stuff, as David Allen defines it, is anything you might want to do something about sometime. That's such a broad category.
This includes projects at work, projects at home, ideas for developing relationships, trade magazines to read, letters to write, items to get at Wal-Mart, things to repair, etc., etc. In other words, we can get a handle on EVERYTHING we care about doing, or might care about doing at some point.
This task alone seems daunting to me. But, he says, if you can get a system that captures everything, then you can feel good about what you are not doing.
I fall victim to the uneasy feeling that I should be doing something else right now. There is always the possibility that I should be engaged in something else: a book I should read, a blog I should write, a book of the Bible I should study, a person I should pray for, a situation that needs my attention.
When I get it all organized, then I can feel good about what I'm not doing. Then I can really focus on the task at hand, rather than being plagued by a vague sense of foreboding. "Oh yeah, I need to remember to do that...and that...and that..."
As Allen puts it, the human mind should be engaged in thinking about things, not thinking of things.