(Mainly writing this down for my own reference)
I found myself in a bad mood this morning because I had realised that despite my polyphasic sleep schedule, I wasn’t getting more done. Specifically, I had spent most of a day staring at a work project without moving it forward. This morning instead of doggedly pushing ahead I practiced a mental soft-reset by driving to Nixon Park and taking a slow, mindful hike. Once I spent some time simply being on the trail, I reflected on my state of mind.
- I have added time to my day, but I have not been practicing mindfullness. Therefore the added time has little solidity.
- I am stubbornly persisting at tasks even when it is clear I am getting nothing done. Even when I do realize that I’ve gotten stuck, the granularity of time involved is too big.
- I am not effectively relaxing because I am not setting (enough) explicit times in which to do so.
- I am spending too much time checking email/FaceBook/etc. without actually acting on what I read. Again, this is because I don’t feel like it’s officially "email time" and so I skim and then defer, skim and defer again.
- I am feeling out of control and distracted because I am not capturing every idea/task/impediment into a trusted system.
- I have too many organisational systems.
- Tackle the day in terms of small time boxes. Set a reminder at each interval. When the reminder goes off, stop. Breathe and center myself. If I am in the middle of something and am making progress, choose whether to continue doing it or switch to a new task. If I am blocked, switch to a new task, no excuses. Physically record my choice of tasks, either in org-mode, Twitter, Present.ly, or whatever. Initial time box period will be 20 minutes.
- Revamp my org-mode setup so that ALL of my potential tasks are available at a moment’s notice.
- Make a point of breaking work projects (tickets) into 20-minute tasks in org-mode.
- Streamline my ability to record ideas, notes, tasks, and impediments quickly and without interrupting flow.
- Make explicit tasks for leisure activities – playing BioShock, surfing the web, reading blogs, taking a walk. Make sure they show up in the unified next task list. When I am goofing off, only goof off.
- Make explicit once or twice-daily tasks for checking email and social networking. Remove obtrusive notifiers, with the exception of Twitter, which doesn’t seem to be a net drain on my productivity.
- Make the GTD-style daily review a daily task.
- Stop using Remember the Milk. I already have org-mode and the Frolic Board, which is arguably one system too many. Adding systems just adds confusion and doubt to my day.