Decoding David Allen’s 5-Step Goals

26 Jan, 2018, 09:21 AM

David Allen, a revolutionary stress manager gave CREDAI an insight on how he managed time without stressing out on the little details. The goal was to make the developers and builders of today more competitive and efficient. Every word he spoke clearly and efficiently underlined this goal. The talk was held at Chancery Pavilion on the 21st of November, 2017 and was attended by members of CREDAI.

According to David’s theory, to keep life simple we have to rely on more than just our brains that create ideas but have no power to retain them. Every time you rush to a supermarket to buy a lemon, you fill your basket with various things, but at the end, we miss out on the most important thing, The Lemon! Why do we humans have this tendency? That was the key issue Mr Allen wanted to address. Life is packed with things that keep us involved and distracts us from our thought process. But how does one manage to keep these thoughts aside and concentrate on the ‘now’ or maybe expand ourselves to the new and improved. Simple things like a notepad, a pocket calendar and other gadgets that help us organize and manage time, are the answer.

Mr. Faisal Rizvi, Learning Chair of CREDAI giving Mr. David Allen a token of appreciation

His session, filled with insights had a whole sub-session on his five-step solution from his book, ‘Getting Things Done’ – The Art of a Stress-Free Life.

  1.    Capture:His first step is to capture the essence of what must be done and write it down so you don’t forget what to do.This is a huge step to stress-free productivity and one of the biggest habits to set. We are addicted to keeping things in our heads. We’re constantly making mental to-do lists. However, once we realise that our mind is for Having Ideas and not for Holding Them and how relieving it feels not to carry all of our commitments in our heads, we’d never have the same thought twice. Instead use a trusted system to capture those thougths as soon as we have them.
  2.   Clarify: To ensure that the thoughts we have captured, stay out of our heads, the next step is to Clarify. Clarify involves asking the two questions:
    – What exactly needs to be done to move forward on that task (ie your Next Action)? Eg. is it a call to make, email to send, discussion to have
    – And what is the end Outcome (or Project) that would bring closure to the task?
  3.     Organise:The third step is to park all those Next Actions and Projects into lists, so it doesn’t bother you later and make you lose focus. Organising your tasks will help you ensure you get the right thing done at the right time.
  4.     Reflection:Reviewing the Next Actions lists, Projects lists to ensure you see all the options available to you at any point in time, so that you can make appropriate choices, instead of being driven by the Latest and Loudest.
  5.     Engagement:The final step is to engage or simply do the task listed out, based on the three models of Prioritisation

The forum was opened to questions and one of the members asked Mr David how he escaped the ‘List Trap’ and becoming a compulsive list maker, he also asked if there are better applications than Evernote that carry forward the incomplete tasks. Mr David answered these questions with his quick wit and charm by saying that lists are meant for today and life goals. Some go their whole life with just a single list. But these tasks are meant to be completed and not carried forward.

Mr David Allen giving ,autographing his New York Times Bestselling Book for his fans.

The night closed with a scrumptious meal and drinks.