As most of you know, I'm always looking for ways to be better organized. For the most part, I subscribe to the Gettings Things Done (GTD) method. Unfortunately, I never took the time to sit down and think about how I might apply GTD to our move. As a result, I am sitting in the midst of chaos.
A recent post by awesome organizational/workflow consultant Matt Cornell gave me some more food for thought. In his wonderful review and summary of Getting Organized by Chris Crouch, Matt highlights several interesting features of the book.
My new personal favorite is the "MIT": The Most Important Thing (the term is courtesy of Gina Trapani at Lifehacker). The general idea is to determine what the MOST important thing is to accomplish for that day and do it first, even before an e-mail check (gasp!). Yes, yes, yes....I know. Blogging is not my MIT, but I figured I'd lay out the idea first. My MIT for today will be my inbox processing because it has simply become a huge burden. I can't focus and I cringe every time the mail comes because the stack is beginning to lean.
I quote from Matt's summary of Crouch here and interpolate my comments:
# His reasons we feel overwhelmed:
* You are setting unrealistic time frames for what you are trying to do.
I find my time frames are fine if I use them effectively (therein lies the problem)
* You are procrastinating too long.
* You are spending too much time working on things that do not matter.
Only occasionally, as a form of procrastination.
* You are over-promising what you can do for someone.
No. I think I've finally conquered that one.
* You do not have the profound knowledge needed to do the task.
OH! That explains why my complete 6 volume history of the Mass isn't published yet!
* You do not know when and how to say No.
Again, getting better at that one. Graduate school is all about saying yes, yes, yes, so I am enjoying the freedom now to say no, no, no. At least for the time being. :-)
# He lists these causes of procrastination:
* Perfectionism - the paralyzing need to get it right the first time
Big, big problem for me. I hate drafts even though I know how necessary they are.
* Impulsiveness - taking on too many things to do and overloading yourself
* Fear of failure - rather be seen as lacking in effort than ability
I do have a fear of failure, but it isn't that I'd rather be seen as lacking in effort.
* Perception of task - seems too hard or too boring
* Uncertainty - not sure what to do
I tend to err on the other side. I make hasty decisions just to move forward but then have to go back because it was the wrong choice.
Now...off to process that inbox!