When there is a rock in our path, we can stumble over it or use it as a stepping stone.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Using Technology as a memory Aid, Part 3, B

This is my third day of "translating" the note I left to myself:

work on part 2 b of blog post - scanning data into Evernote has additional benefits such as less for Diana to deal with and also makes life much easier when I go to doctor's office, to get groceries, etc. What's the next action and the two minute rule also help. “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting with the first one.” –Mark Twain

into a blog post:



"As I was researching Evernote, I repeatedly came across references to David Allen's GTD system and also the IFTTT web site.    I researched both and the combination of all three had been a Godsend."

I think I will tackle IFTTT tomorrow.  For today, I am just going to talk about the 3 parts of the GTD system that as a dementia patient I personally find useful.

GTD is meant for busy executives, so there are many parts of it that don't apply to my life.   The parts that do are helping me a lot though:
  1. "Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them" - David Allen      Basically this means don't try to remember things.  For someone like me who can often forget a thought 60 seconds after I have had it, that idea is a major stress reliever.    In a nutshell, with GTD, when you have an idea "you capture it."   You can capture it anyway you chose - hand write it, capture it electronically, with an audio notetaker - whatever works for you.    Just get it out of your head and onto your capture system instead of trying to remember all of your "to do's" and "to considers" and "what if's," etc.  (I use Evernote to capture and organize my thoughts.)
  2. "If you determine an action can be done in two minutes, you actually should do it right then because it’ll take longer to organize it and review it than it would be to actually finish it the first time you notice it." - David Allen     It's amazing how many things can be done in two minutes.   Making this a part of my life has helped me stay on top of a lot of things that would have otherwise piled up.  The less that is piled up awaiting my attention, the less stressed I am and the better I function.
  3. David Allen says that you cannot do a project, you can only do a physical action.   Thus for each project, the question to ask is always "what's the next action" that needs to be done to move this project forward.   Once you get used to this way of looking at larger tasks, they become much more manageable.   I use my Evernote system to track my projects and my daily to do lists (also kept and managed in Evernote) to remind myself each day of THE NEXT STEP on whatever projects I am working on.   By focusing on ONLY the next step, I stay on track and don't get overwhelmed (very important when one has dementia.)
“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting with the first one.” –Mark Twain


In fact, while it was the inquiry from the NY Times reporter about using technology to assist with dementia that got me started writing on my blog again, it is using Evernote and GTD that is allowing me to do it as I had reached the point where I was feeling overwhelmed and putting a lot of things off.   Once I realized I wanted to do some more blogging, I was able to use Evernote to capture my ideas, determine next steps and then with a much clearer head, get back to actually blogging.

Tomorrow, I will try to write about the third part of the triad that has been helping me a lot:  IFTTT (if this, then that).

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