2018-04-11 – Managing Someday/Maybe Lists

This session is all about managing someday/maybe lists at a practical level and how you can use OmniFocus to ensure that these lists are reviewed periodically.

OmniFocus 3 Course Available

This session was recorded using OmniFocus 2 for Mac.

If you’re using OmniFocus 3, check out Managing Someday/Maybe with OmniFocus 3. This in-depth course covers features and best practices for capturing and managing someday/maybe lists using OmniFocus and complementary productivity apps.

Learn how to use OmniFocus to manage lists of things that you’d like to consider doing in the future, but that aren’t actionable in the present. In the Getting Things Done (GTD) methodology, David Allen refers to these lists as “someday/maybe lists”.

Session Overview

While someday/maybe lists can be stored in OmniFocus, it may be more practical to store at least some of these lists outside of OmniFocus. We’ll explore a variety of different scenarios and help you determine what will work best for you.

Managing Someday Maybe Lists with OmniFocus

What You’ll Learn

Topics covered in this live session include:

  • Why it’s important to have someday/maybe lists.
  • Advantages to storing someday/maybe lists in OmniFocus.
  • Advantages to storing someday/maybe outside of OmniFocus (e.g. in apps like Evernote, Trello and Apple Notes).
  • How to manage someday/maybe lists that are shared by a group of people (e.g. your family or a team at work).
  • How often you need to review someday/maybe lists.
  • How to use OmniFocus to ensure that both your individual and shared someday/maybe lists get the appropriate amount of attention.
  • Best practices for reviewing your someday/maybe lists.
  • Best practices for creating OmniFocus projects based on someday/maybe lists.
  • How to deal with projects that are put on hold indefinitely.
  • And more…

Capturing, Organizing and Getting Creative

As you process items that you’ve captured in your inbox, you’ll inevitably encounter things that that are not ready for action. This could include something as simple as an idea for a blog post to lofty dreams such as building a beautiful home by the sea or starting a new company.

It’s important to have one or more places to keep track of all of the stuff that you want to revisit in the future.

It’s equally important that you be intentional about reviewing these future aspirations. If your psyche trusts that you’re going to look at what you’ve captured on a regular basis, you’ll likely find that you’ll have a greater capacity to focus on current projects and actions without pie-in-the-sky ideas stealing your mental focus.

As you review what you’ve captured you can tap into your innate creativity and let your imagination soar. You’ll decide what to keep, what is ripe for further exploration and what to remove from the list. If find you accumulate more ideas than you’re likely to be able to accomplishing a lifetime, it might be time to give some away and/or start to think about expanding your team.

David Allen on Someday/Maybe Lists

In the book “Getting Things Done”, David Allen coined the term “Someday/Maybe”. He shares how “…it can be useful and inspiring to maintain an ongoing list of things you might want to do at some point but not now”. He goes on to say that “…this is a ‘parking lot’ for projects that would be impossible to move on at present but that you don’t want to forget about entirely. You’d like to be reminded of the possibilities at regular intervals”.

“Activating and maintaining your Someday/Maybe category unleashes the flow of your creative thinking—you have permission to imagine cool things to do without having to commit to doing anything about them yet.”
— David Allen (from Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity)

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