Categories | Best Practices of GTD | David Allen | Getting Started | Getting Things Done | Implementation | Inspiration
Too many next actions? DA weighs in…
Question: I have done a good job of getting all my commitments in Outlook tasks and out of my head, but here is my dilemma: I have written down every work and personal task I need to do, including converting emails to action items and now I have 580 work tasks, 346 personal tasks, 266 tasks for my assistant and 117 honey-dos for my husband! I have them organized by project and date, but am feeling overwhelmed by the sheer volume of it all! Any advice? Thanks so much for your work.
David Allen: Well, you have as many commitments as you have, and unless you want eternal subliminal stress, you need to get them objectively out of your head and reviewable. As you’ve discovered, your next task to get more stress-free is to determine which ones are really “someday” vs. which ones need to be on the front shelf. Essentially, everything that you’re not doing at any moment is “someday,” but the psyche feels much better when you have made some distinctions between the active ones that you really want/need to get done within a reasonable time vs. those that can wait. Ultimately you’ll have to decide what kind of overview/map you need and want to see, to feel OK about what you’re doing. So there’s no right or wrong answer about any of this—only what’s most workable for you.