Tips for Tackling the Weekly Review?

Posted by Dan Hinmon, MCSMN Director @dahinmon, Jan 8, 2019

My biggest challenge with GTD is doing the weekly review. Although I am always happy when I do it, I have a terrible time fitting it into my schedule. I have been getting it done less than half the time. Does anyone have a tip to scheduling and sticking with it? (Beyond just "schedule and stick with it"?)

I have a similar question. I don't need the full 90 minutes. I use Trello to keep track of all my projects and individual tasks. I move cards over as I complete each task and add new projects or tasks as they happen, typically after each meeting or checking emails. Since so much of my task organization happens on a daily basis, I don't need more than 10 minutes Friday morning to look over the list and make sure I added and moved all cards. Any reason the long once a week review is necessary?

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@toffenbacher

I have a similar question. I don't need the full 90 minutes. I use Trello to keep track of all my projects and individual tasks. I move cards over as I complete each task and add new projects or tasks as they happen, typically after each meeting or checking emails. Since so much of my task organization happens on a daily basis, I don't need more than 10 minutes Friday morning to look over the list and make sure I added and moved all cards. Any reason the long once a week review is necessary?

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Sounds like you're capturing continuously, @toffenbacher, and keeping your system up to date throughout the week. If you can do your weekly review in a shorter time, that's great. Keeping your inboxes close to empty regularly makes that part of the review shorter. Besides making sure you have next actions for all of your projects, the Weekly Review is meant to help you have a time to at least occasionally think bigger and longer-term. Otherwise you can get so busy with keeping up with next actions that you don't get time to brainstorm projects. Maybe in addition to your 10 minutes to catch up you might just add 10-20 minutes for a mind sweep. But again, if you're capturing continuously even that can be shorter.

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The first couple of GTD review sessions were spent getting everything sorted and organized. Slowly I am coming up with what works for me. I start with any tasks in my list that do not have 'due dates'. I review them to make sure that they do not need an assigned time table to get them completed. Once I have reviewed those items, I look at the week ahead to see what I have already decided should be accomplished and adjust any that might have become more urgent. If I do not use all of the time for reviewing my to-do's – I pick a few to tackle right then and there. There are so many great aspects about the GTD system and how it has improved how I feel about juggling my personal and professional life that I simply ask – why didn't I know about this sooner!

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@toffenbacher

I have a similar question. I don't need the full 90 minutes. I use Trello to keep track of all my projects and individual tasks. I move cards over as I complete each task and add new projects or tasks as they happen, typically after each meeting or checking emails. Since so much of my task organization happens on a daily basis, I don't need more than 10 minutes Friday morning to look over the list and make sure I added and moved all cards. Any reason the long once a week review is necessary?

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I was thinking about trying Trello! The tasks have been the hardest for me. I'm using ToDoist but so far–fail. 🙁 I'm guilty of using the calendar in Outlook and can't get rid of this. I was thinking Trello might feel like a better substitute.

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@mbear

I was thinking about trying Trello! The tasks have been the hardest for me. I'm using ToDoist but so far–fail. 🙁 I'm guilty of using the calendar in Outlook and can't get rid of this. I was thinking Trello might feel like a better substitute.

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Are you using the free version of Todoist or the premium? It makes a world of difference in how much flexibility you have to get the tool to work for you. Let me know if you want to Skype and swap ideas.

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@mbear

I was thinking about trying Trello! The tasks have been the hardest for me. I'm using ToDoist but so far–fail. 🙁 I'm guilty of using the calendar in Outlook and can't get rid of this. I was thinking Trello might feel like a better substitute.

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Maybe ToDoist is not intuitive for you, Melissa. Since you're so comfortable with Outlook, is there a way to make that work? ToDoist has a nifty system where you can forward your emails straight into the app. That might help. What is not working about ToDoist?

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I did upgrade ToDoist so I could categorize tasks. I'll look at that forward to app email Dan–I haven't done that. Right now, I'm thinking the problem is more me getting a new routine set vs. the tool. Diana, let me know if you have any ToDoist set up tips I should use that you've found helpful. Much appreciated all!

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@mbear

I did upgrade ToDoist so I could categorize tasks. I'll look at that forward to app email Dan–I haven't done that. Right now, I'm thinking the problem is more me getting a new routine set vs. the tool. Diana, let me know if you have any ToDoist set up tips I should use that you've found helpful. Much appreciated all!

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Yes… it's Behaviors + Tools. And it can take some time to work out the kinks to make a particular system work for you. But if we can learn from others who have used the same tools, we'll all make progress faster together.

This gives me an idea that maybe it would be helpful to start a thread for each organizing tool, and then people who are considering tools can weigh pros and cons of each, and also get tips on how to use them better. I'll start the OmniFocus thread, and others can start threads for the ones they're using, or chime in if someone else has already started one.

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@mbear

I was thinking about trying Trello! The tasks have been the hardest for me. I'm using ToDoist but so far–fail. 🙁 I'm guilty of using the calendar in Outlook and can't get rid of this. I was thinking Trello might feel like a better substitute.

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I had to use Trello for another team project and it forced me to learn it and use it. Now, it's so simple to me. If you are interested, shoot me an email and I'll send you a screenshot of how I set up my board.

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@LeeAase

Yes… it's Behaviors + Tools. And it can take some time to work out the kinks to make a particular system work for you. But if we can learn from others who have used the same tools, we'll all make progress faster together.

This gives me an idea that maybe it would be helpful to start a thread for each organizing tool, and then people who are considering tools can weigh pros and cons of each, and also get tips on how to use them better. I'll start the OmniFocus thread, and others can start threads for the ones they're using, or chime in if someone else has already started one.

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Great idea!

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