Blog Post # 34 – Open Loops

Keeping track of the myriad of things that need to get done can be a challenge.

Life in 2016 is hectic and complicated.

So much to remember.

“Did I RSVP for that birthday party?”

“What was that last item that my spouse wanted me to get at the grocery store?”

“Where did I park my car?”

It is almost too much.

We try “to-do” lists, tickler systems, calendaring.  And they do help manage tasks – to varying degrees.

But sometimes things can still fall through the cracks.

This week, I began reading the updated version of Getting Things Done by David Allen.  A friend gave me the paperback version and I borrowed the audio CD at the library.

I read the original GTD around the time that I started the law firm.

In the book, David discusses “open loops.”  

Open loops are unfinished tasks, things that nag at us – basically, our mind remembering the things that we have not gotten done already.

And our mind doesn’t always remember at the right time.  We remember that we need a new light bulb for the kitchen as we lay down to bed, not when we drive by the hardware store.

David believes these open loops take up a lot of our brain’s processing power and I think he’s right.  David encourages us to develop an airtight system of getting these unfinished, nagging tasks out of our brain and into a format that we won’t lose or misplace them.

I have started tinkering with it and it has been helpful so far.  I will keep you posted.