Reworking to Getting Things Done/Long Running Tasks

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Symptom:

You have to dig out half your lawn to create a bed. Although its one task, it is going to take multiple evenings when you have the energy. How do you record this in a GTD system?

Solution:

1. Add "Dig Out a Flower Bed" to your projects list.

2. Add an outcome goal under it: "When this project is done, we will have a healthy and attractive place to add plants around the house. Not only will this increase the resale potential of the house, but it will make my the wife very happy."

3. If time is an issue (have to get it in before the showing or before the first freeze) then you'll need a deadline, so add "Finish Flower Bed" to the appropriate day on your calendar. If time is not an issue, skip this step.

4. If you're like me and have no clue about landscaping, some planning might be in order to make sure you don't screw it up. If that's the case, add "Natural Planning for the Flower Bed" to whichever task list is appropriate for you. (@anywhere for me) If no planning is necessary, skip to number 6.

5. When you have an appropriate chunk of time available (I would guess 15 mins for me), run through the natural planning process. You should wind up with a rough plan for the project. Append it to the project list and add any time critical dates to the calendar.

5. Add the next step to the appropriate action list. (@home for me) Yes, I know it will take longer than two minutes, even if you break it into chunks like "Measure and mark the area" and "Dig out the first half." Put a star by it if it makes you feel better.

6. When the right time arrives, do it.

7. If it's the right time, do the next step too. If it's not, (too late, to tired) add the next step to the appropriate action list.


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