Staying Thankful (and Productive!) After Thanksgiving
Note: This article was originally published Thanksgiving 2010. It has been updated for republication.
So Thanksgiving is over, nearly everyone is overstuffed with the post-holiday leftover turkey, dressing, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes and yams, and deviled eggs, and lots of us are feeling the effects. For many, the warm glow of family and friends is being suffused by a chill in the air (at least here) and the rampant commercialism of holiday shopping. Me, I’m going to celebrate Christmas with my family as I was taught and have learned to appreciate. In the meantime, it’s back to work and likely overstuffed inboxes rather than turkey, and rampant calendar crashing rather than shopping.
But, there is a way to stay thankful and productive…
If your email Inbox is anything like mine, it accumulated at least 200 messages over the holiday weekend. Since most of the people from whom I receive email were also on leave most of the intervening days, a lot of what accumulated is junk, trash, spam, or newsletters. A little bit will be important. Fortunately, I have places for all of these items. And a few tips for you:
- Move everything from Inbox to your Pending folder
- Sort Pending by Sender rather than Received (or anything else)
- Review everything from TIMBO to determine urgency and immediacy (read about TIMBO)
- Schedule time (even if it’s now through the end of the day) to respond to TIMBO
- Delete everything that’s junk, spam, advertisements, or info CCs that you have no actions on (if you must, move newsletters and info CCs to the To Be Read folder)
- Schedule time to review the remaining items from important senders
If some of the advice above seems foreign to you, or you just want a refresher on keeping your Inbox under control, now’s a good time to revisit The One-Page Inbox.
And, regardless of whether you’re a hardened GTD advocate or frantically searching for a way to gain control of all of the stuff cluttering your head and inboxes after the holiday, the following article is a good one to revisit or visit for the first time, as the case may be. Processing, or Let’s Make Some Hole
If you’re completely new to Getting Things Done, or GTD, the Getting Started link at the top of the page is a good place to look.
Happy holiday season, and a Merry Christmas!
Take care, and enjoy life,