One task at a time

Today, I got a bunch of small tasks completed. I’m feeling pretty good about it, too. Other than the GTD book, what’s helped me immensely?

  • Keep your task lists in context to where you are. If I’m at work, my @Home tasks aren’t any good to me until I get home, so there’s no point in reminding myself of those. If I’m at home, @Errands, @Computer, and @Call, will be viewable for me [in DateBk5]. With these practices in place, I did 5 small tasks at Kare right away.
  • When writing and tracking your tasks, use whatever method that’ll motivate you. I was using index cards for awhile, because I liked ripping the card up after I completed a job. I’m back to using my PDA because I’m trying to decrease the number of buckets I have to check regularly. You can use a few sheets of paper, each containing a list for a specific context, where you cross each one out.
  • Get specific. If you see a task and you get hesitant about it, you should try to break it down further (probably because it’s a project). Example: “Get new spark plugs installed into car” could be broken down to a few smaller tasks. “Call mechanic [to ask if it’s okay to bring my own spark plugs to have installed], “Buy spark plugs from [insert auto store]”, “Bring car to mechanic”.
  • If a task will require a couple of steps to get done, it’s really a project. Identify this, break it down, then organize the best way to do the tasks.
  • Use the right tool for the right job. There isn’t any one method that’ll work for everyone. Mess around with this methodology, have fun, and git ‘er dun!

Here’s to another day of productivity!

New owner of SpinRite 6.0

Thanks to a new customer that needs a computer built, I finally got the extra $89 I needed to purchase one copy of SpinRite 6.0. (It’s not for her, it’s for me.)

Why? For preventative maintenence. (That is a term, right?) Anyway, if a HD is going to fail, I’d like ample to time buy a new HD, move my data onto it, and put the dying one out of service. Also, I’m guessing that if Windows is having errors, it might be because there’s some bad sectors on the HD that need to be marked and put out of service.

Yesterday, I ran Level 4 on my new Seagate 120GB HD. I didn’t know what exactly was going on, but after trying to read everything from the SpinRite section, I felt pretty convinced that it’s worth every penny. I did have to stop it a few times, so I just jotted down the percentage and what partition of the HD it was on. Then when I took off from home, I rebooted to SpinRite and resumed where it left off. I figure I’ll run Level 4 every three months, and Level 1 every other week.

Today at work, I brought my old IBM 40GB 120GXP HD to run SpinRite. I initially stopped using it because it wasn’t being detected anymore. I figure that maybe I could check it out, get the results, and ask SpinRite support if I should even consider using it anymore. Well, during the scan, the DynaStat Recovery System was initiated and was going through one sector for a long time. It’s taking a reallly long time, but if it means I’ll be able to use it in my system again, that’d be cool, right?

Ok, ok, so I’m weird. I haven’t lost any data, and yet I’m still using this product anyway. Well, it just seems worth it to me. I’m hoping that I can use this 40GB HD in my system again (for Windows), then dedicate the 120GB HD strictly for data. Wouldn’t that be nice? Oh well, time will tell.

Oh yeah, if you’re a consultant, the software license information page explains that you need 4 copies of the latest version. I don’t see that happening, so if my customers want it, I guess they’ll just have to buy it for themselves.

Is this a review? I don’t know. But I figured I’d share in case anyone had some insight, or were thinking like me.

Inbox whittled down

My Desk 2006-03-01

I’m excited! I’ve just finished re-reading through “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity“, and for the past hour or so, I went through the rest of my inbox! (It’s the basket.) I didn’t completely process it the correct way, because you still see items in it. Here’s my reasons for now:

  1. I was processing from 9pm to 10:30pm, so I was really tired!
  2. The rest of the things are reference material that I need to file away, but they don’t have a place yet.
  3. The CDs are too bulky to put into my tickler file, and I didn’t want to get up for the one music CD that can be stored in the bedroom

Remember: Just one item at a time. That definitely helped keep me going when I was processing.

I don’t trust my system yet because it’s not easy to create new file folders, and my filing drawer is really stuffed. Well, to me it is. And, of course, my inbox isn’t just an inbox – it’s housing reference material.

Wait, I just had an epiphany! If I know the rest of the stuff is just reference material, I should just put it all in a small box until I can file it. Then, I should add “File reference material” to my next actions list. That way, my inbox can be at zero, and I’ll get around to filing those things. Yes!

DSL upgraded

I upgraded my SBC Yahoo DSL connection to AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet Pro Package. I’ve been paying over $40 because I didn’t renew my contract, but I finally did 2 1/2 weeks ago. Today, it finally took effect – sweet! $17.99 for 1.5-3.0Mbps DL and 384-512Kbps UL speeds feels much better.

DSL speeds 2006-03-01

Gonna get moving

I love it. My mom’s finally getting down to business with getting our clutter cleaned up. She just came into the living room and said, “Okay, Friday, we’re gonna move a bunch of our stuff into storage.” Basically, write it down in ink, get a truck, and get psyched. This is a big project. Before and after pictures will be made. I’ll be needing to borrow a truck. I’m excited!

Philips DVP642 Progressive-Scan DVD Player (Refurb) $29.99 shipped at Philips Outlet

The same Philips DVP642 DVD player I’ve been using to enjoy downloaded TV shows (via BitTorrent) is available at the Philips Outlet for $29.99 shipped. That’s half of what I paid for mine – how awesome is that? I think everyone should have one of these, they’re that good. (Golf clap: Passwird Deals for Thursday, 2/16/06)

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