In today’s complex conditions of living and working, one factor can diversify you from the other people and provide extremely value-added services towards the people you associate with, is the organization!

2 Organization Schemes

Life organization and management can be tricky when you use it sporadically and without a system to assist you to achieve your goals. But, today, with all the personal and professional activities, should be accomplished, during a day, it is of major importance! Fortunately, though, there are valuable systems that can help you decide and reach the destination you have chosen in life!

Two (2) of the most prominent are:

Both of these organization schemes are valuable and if applied in a synergistic way in your personal and professional life can provide a huge impact in your life!

Systems And Organization Approaches – A Personal View

After reading the “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity” I start to include and integrate the basic GTD principles in my way of working. The way of my doing things, until then, was a sum of various time management and organization techniques I have found of use in the line of my work and various tweaks I had employ and made my life (personal and business) easier!

The GTD principles, in question, blended with other formal approaches I used (as Stephen R. Covey‘s approach in life organization and management) and combined with my experience and my custom-made “hacks” (various insights, ideas, approaches, tactics, I found of value, during past years).

Major role in the final implementation of my personal organization and life management scheme, played my love for the writing (in general!) and the analog systems (in my way of doing things, I would like to use a system, portable, readily available anywhere and easy of use; i.e. pen and paper!).

All these streams formed the base for my present action and organization system!

The Stephen R. Covey’s Approach In Organization

The approach of Stephen R. Covey, is an integrated life management approach, aiming at life-work balance! It is mainly documented in Stephen R. Covey books The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change (25th Anniversary Edition), The 8th Habit: From Effectiveness to Greatness, Principle-Centered Leadership and First Things First.

In his books, Covey

describes a framework for prioritizing work that is aimed at long-term goals, at the expense of tasks that appear to be urgent, but are in fact less important. This is his 2×2 matrix: classifying tasks as urgent and non-urgent on one axis, and important or non-important on the other axis. His quadrant 2 has the items that are non-urgent but important. These are the ones he believes we are likely to neglect; but, should focus on to achieve effectiveness.

Important items are identified by focusing on a few key priorities and roles which will vary from person to person, then identifying small goals for each role each week, in order to maintain a holistic life balance. (Wikipedia: First Things First (book))

In short, Covey’s approach develops a solid foundation for the process and organization of major life and business activities, while, provides the tools permit you to focus on what’s important.

Getting Things Done (GTD)

On the other hand, GTD is an equally value-added system of life organization, aiming at a better and effortless life organization. Basically, it is a simple and efficient organization system, able to develop great results if practiced methodically and consistently! (as Covey’s approach, thus and the GTD need from you to invest time and effort before produce the required results!)

The GTD methodology

rests on the idea of moving planned tasks and projects out of the mind by recording them externally and then breaking them into actionable work items. This allows one to focus attention on taking action on tasks, instead of on recalling them (Wikipedia: Getting Things Done)

The value of GTD method of doing things is that can be implemented in various ways, it is easy to be implemented (after an initial period of self-training and practice) and can be used creatively even as a stand alone life organization technique, or as a part of even greater organization schemes!

Some Last Words Of Wisdom!

Both these methodologies, are valuable when you work on them and observe the presuppositions and conditions set by their originators! None of them, promise for quick fixes and results without effort! As every methodology of value you can employ in your life, Covey’s approach and GTD alike, need a lot of original time and effort to be implemented effectively!

You can select any method you think that it would help you achieve your goals more effectively or you might like to develop a new approach, taking the best element of these or another method!

In any case, though, you should be remembered:

  1. Select a system and use it consistently,
  2. If you know what you do, select the most valuable features of a system and integrated them in your way of doing things (your workflow!),
  3. Keep your system simple and always updated. Implemented it based on you (your needs, requirements, etc), not based on what other people may say it would work,
  4. Employ a system that it is easy for you to use and it is integrated seamlessly in your everyday habits, ideas, business and personal workflows,
  5. Do not follow something, because is hype, trendy or have a zillion of tools to support it; select it if you can actual and definitely going to use it,
  6. Read, read and read, aiming at improving your system, all the time
  7. Review your system often and remove the redundant, obsolete or not any more convenient (for you) features!

Question: How do you organize your life? What organization you use, in order to achieve your life goals?