It all started with a Google of the name “Merlin Mann” because dooce posted pictures of him on her site and I was curious who he was. (Why do I feel like several of you are rolling your eyes at how little I know about people in cyberspace?) I ended up at his site and the first entry was a video of a presentation he did at Google.
First of all – have you ever been to a really good religious/spiritual event? It could be anything from a Rainbow Family Gathering to a Southern Baptist Revival – if it’s good, it will have the same effect. It will make you want to go home and re-start your life. Which is why “Revival” is such a good name for them (duh) because hopefully – that is what it will make you feel: Revived.
Well – Merlin Mann did that for me in his presentation and all he was talking about was email. I’ve officially hit an all-time dorky low. I can not stop thinking about the incredibly simple points he discusses when it comes to processing your inbox. He says in the beginning of the presentation that most of these admittedly common sense ideas come from this book. Have you heard of this guy and this book? Well – if not – join me in the group of The Only People On The Internet To Not Know What The GTD Method Is.
Between Merlin Mann’s presentation and this book that I haven’t bought yet but I’ve read a bunch about – I feel like I may actually be able to catch up on my life. I get a CRAP LOAD of email. First, there is the company that I work for as the “Support Person” to try to fix things that are broken or teach about things that are useful. That mandates a LOT of emails. Then there is my blog – which creates a lot of emails as well. And I feel like I never actually get caught up with dealing with any/all of those emails. The points Merlin Mann mentions and the GTD Method pretty much teach you to just DO IT ALREADY. It’s all common sense, but somehow – hearing someone else say it – makes it seem like a brand new (and freakin’ brilliant) concept. Empty My Inbox? Is that even possible? Just thinking about it gives me a high. I don’t think my inbox has ever been empty because I leave stuff in there until I’m done with them. And I’m never damn done with them. It’s a scary place — my inbox.
Anyway…(Man, I didn’t mean for this to turn into some really boring infomercial. Sorry.) I wanted to know if any of you practice/use any of these methods to be productive in your life. I’m famous for lists and organization so they will fit perfectly into my world, but I wonder if you’ve ever tried them and do they help? Evidently the Google Campus offers GTD workshops/classes for their employees. I mean – if it’s good enough for Google? It’s good enough for Zoot.
I’ll let you know how it goes for me. I’m going to begin implementing these ideas in my life on Monday. Because, while I’m desperate for a way to manage the chaos, I’m also a tad OCD and I can’t start anything new in my life on any day but Monday.
(You’re laughing at me now, aren’t you?)
Update from 2020: I fucking hate productivity culture now. I firmly believed this shit damaged me and a lot of my generation. I almost deleted this post but then I thought I should save it just for documentation.