Friday, February 21, 2014

GTD + EN: How to get all your "Stuff" into your Evernote Inbox

The secret to making GTD work is to get all of the clutter out of your mind and into your inbox.

The key is for you to act without delay.   When you think of somethign, ask your self one question, "IS IT ACTIONABLE?"  if the answer is yes, then immediately get it into your system and free up your mind.  

How do I handle the clutter in my life?
  • Paper 
    • If I can take a picture of the paper with the document camera in EN, then I do it.  
    • If I have it electronically, then I attach it to the note in EN that describes the next action
    • If I can't attach it or take a picture of it, then I put it in a file folder, grab my label maker and put a label on the tab.  Then file it in my system.  Inside the note that tells me what my next action is, I make myself a reminder that the folder is in the file drawer and what I filed it under.  
    • Bottom line.  Get the paper out of your desk inbox or off of your desk and get it into the system!
  • E-mails
    • Apply the 2 minute rule. If you can answer it and file it within 2 minutes, then DO IT.
    • If it will take you longer than 2 minutes, and it is actionable, then immediately forward it to your EN inbox.  Move the e-mail out of your inbox to a reference folder.  
    • Do this will all of your e-mail accounts.  I do it 2 or 3 times a day.    
  • Use the web clipper
    • I love the Evernote web clipper for Chrome.  It saves me hours of time.  
    • When I see an article I want to read, I simply clip it to Evernote, tag it to read later and shut the web browser.  No more distracted surfing.  
  • Use your iPhone Evernote App. 
    • Post it note.  If you wrote something on a post it note, then use the post it note feature on your Evernote camera.  
    • Take a photo - Take a picture of the "Stuff".  A picture may not be worth 1000 words, but if it is worth 100 words, then that is 100 words I don't have to type  with my thumbs.  
    • Document - I use this feature all the time.  I didn't realize how handy it would be.  Take a picture of the document.  
    • Business cards - This is a premium feature and I thought I wouldn't use it, but now I use it all the time.  I love how quickly it gets the information on the business card into your contacts list.  
    • When all else fails you can type a note into a new note on your phone, computer or tablet. 
    • Use the voice recorder on your phone that is within the New Note screen
    • Tell Siri.  She will remember.  
The key is not to wait, the key is to act.  If the answer to the "Is it actionable?" question is yes, then you must capture it into your system.  Trying to do work outside of your system disturbs your "mind like water" state and makes your mind use valuable brain cells trying to remember things rather than coming up with new ideas.  

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