Clearing the mind is one of my favorite things with GTD. You cannot lose. To me, it’s one of the quickest ways to feel better if I’m stressed out, feeling overwhelmed or trying to mentally manage the ankle-biting things that have my attention. In a short period of time, I can sweep my brain of any nagging bits–from buying stamps to wondering what’s I should do with my investments. And what’s amazing to me, as easily as the brain will hold on to that stuff, it will just as easily let it go. It’s not a strong fighter if it trusts I will process, organize & review what I’m collecting. All 5 of those GTD phases are interconnected like an ecosystem that works together.
In my GTD Twitter class this morning, doing a Guided Mindsweep, a few people asked why they would write things down in a mindsweep that are already on their lists? There are a few common reasons why things will creep back into your mind:
You didn’t clarify enough. If your mind thinks there is more planning or brainstorming to do about that, or what you captured as a next action is not the next physical, visible step, it will take it back.
You’re not reviewing enough. If your mind doesn’t trust you’re looking at that choice often enough (Are we doing anything about this??), it will take the job back. The Weekly Review is gold. It’s not just clean-up time, it’s reassurance time for your mind that you’re “on it,” even if that’s a decision to let it incubate some more on Someday.