GTD is not a one time transaction.
It’s a journey. A path of Mastery.
And since 2015, we’ve taken over 400 people on this journey, and witnessed first hand how GTD has transformed their lives.
Through the GTD Practitioners Spotlight series we present their aha moments, their confessions and their sage advice to inform and inspire you.
This month’s Getting Things Done star in focus is Vasumathi Sriganesh.
Vasumathi lives in Mumbai and is a wife-mother-head of non-profit at The QMed Knowledge Foundation who takes productivity seriously.
Here’s her GTD story.
Q1: What was the one pain point that pushed you to seek GTD?
A: I am married into a family of super-organized people! Being organized was never my strong point.There were (and occasionally still are) times when I froze – thinking of all that I needed to get done. Finding a book with the name Getting Things Done was like finding a gold mine 🙂
Q2: How has GTD helped this issue?
A: GTD has been magic for me! I have now learned how to get things done, and I have also learned that if I do not complete certain agenda items, it is mainly because I really DO have too much on my plate – it is not my imagination! I feel so much better about myself and overwhelm is no longer a problem.
Q3. Let’s sweep a broader approach. How has GTD improved your life?
A: Immediately after the workshop, I was able to do everything that I was taught and suddenly there was such a change in me that my husband started recommending the program to others!
I observed that I was okay with things that used to cause me stress: For example:
Not accomplishing everything I set out to do wasn’t the end of the world anymore. I understood that I might be too busy with my priorities. Or the items belong to my “Someday/Maybe” list for now!
I was able to accomplish pretty easily the activities that I had procrastinating on. A clear head made things so much easier!
Q4. If you were introduced to GTD a decade earlier, what do you think would be different about your life today?
A: I would definitely be a far more organized person. No question about it. And I guess I would have achieved the goals that have been progressing slower than I like.
Q5. What is your GTD set-up like? What specific tools do you use?
A: Before doing the workshop, I had read the book partially, and started using Evernote. After doing the workshop, I am still using the Action Pad, as I enjoy writing with my hands.
Q6. What are your thoughts about the Action Pad?
A: Simply LOVE it! The only change I would want is a mechanism to pull out sheets of paper and put them in another section. Right now we can only do that with the section partitioners.
Q7. What is the one GTD step that you took the longest to master and why?
A: Identifying what qualified as “a project”. I first made a big list of Project Categories like “Lectures” and then called each Lecture a project. (I am often invited to deliver lectures). I then learned that I need to make a note of focus areas (in my case – lectures, workshops and all teaching) and then term as projects any activity that has a significant number of steps to it, but importantly – that it is likely to get over in about a year’s time.
Q8. Any tips you would like to share with would be practitioners and newbies to help them make the most of GTD?
A: Attend a workshop (unless you can read the book with 100% concentration). Pay FULL attention during the workshop and understand every element. Half your battle is won by doing this. Start working on GTD immediately and on a daily basis. And most importantly – if you get stuck with any issues write to Arif & Ali – and get it clarified immediately (Don’t worry – this takes about two minutes)
Q9. What is your “fall off” advice? How can those who have gone off track get back on the bandwagon?
A: Tell yourself – it does not matter. It is like falling off a bicycle several times before you learn to ride one “without thinking”. Start with the mind sweep list immediately and move on to the next steps… And just in case *anyone* makes wisecracks about you not sticking to GTD – simply ignore them!