The war of doing more, and setting up less


War at work:

You can see this as a traditional war or as an urban gang war. In a traditional you know your enemies, at work or school you know what the time waster are . In an urban gang war,  you have the Drop By shootings occurring, that you must duck  at work you you also have DropBys that are not shots, but actions that others ask of you at any moment’s notice, that you must duck (Be aware of ).

War and the tools to win the battle of getting work done:

To-do. txt , Reminders, Outlook Task, Omnifocus or Paper and Pen Choose Your Weapon. I choose a combo of both Omnifocus, Mind Maps and Paper and Pen. The most important thing in the war at work, is to spend more time doing, and less time in the system. Yes Fight the war more, spend less time setting up the system to plan the war. Time it takes to get a working system, but once you got it working, it will be an easier battle to win or battle.
Work can be like war, with allies and enemies on all fronts.

Whatever the methods, tools, or workflows you use, the battle must be won. My personal arsenals are Emergent Task Planner, Omnifocus, and Mindnode. This is not to say that it will be for you, you pick your army, and deploy them as you best see fit. I love sending actionable emails To Omnifocus, planing the war with Mindnode, and setting start dates for each battle (next actions) in Omnifocus. During the battle, I love to keep a journal (I use Day One APP.), to keep notes of things that occurred to me during the madness of the battle (work), I write down thoughts that are on my mind in a freestyle method into Day One APP. To minimize distraction which in a battle can be deadly, at work I keep with my my important three actions in a paper /pen solution, the one I use is “The Emergent Task Planner” (


Battle Day:

  1. Organize the day before a bit.
  2. To keep my work area with all the tools that I will need and nothing else.
  3. Yes my desk may be full of all different tools, but they all serve a purpose, but others think it look like a mess or too much but it works for me.
  4. Come a few minutes early to work to brain dump.
  5. Ask myself what are the three most important things I need to have time to get done.
  6. Write them down in my emergent task Planner paper.
  7. Add my next actions or update them in Omnifocus.
  8. Squeeze time for thing that get thrown at me, that I  can’t say NO to.
  9. Add appointments to my calendar, where I will meet with my army (coworkers), or work with other people at a certain time during the day.
  10. Open any applications  and documents that I will need during the day.
  11. Important for some, if you can Do not Check your email, make that one hour after you got into the office. Eat your first frog first. If it is important,  your soldiers (Coworkers), can call you about any emergency.
  12. I also try to remember to put my corporate Instant Messgener  with a Bussy message, to alert others I am getting something done at the moment.
  13. After that I go directly to Doing work.

End of the Battle (End of the Day):

After a long war, it’s time to clean up. This is the time at the end of the day I do a daily review of my task for the day, I do this before I head out the door and shut down my Macintosh. This helps in speeding up Omnifocus Syncs, cleaning my brain, and organizing my MAC and Work PC. Work on my PC I close any application I do not need open, so that I can quickly jump to work the next day. I figure that having the fresh system the next day, will speed up my computer the following day and allowing me to jump directly to work.  Also it’s a reminder that before I leave I must shut down my Macintosh, it’s like a human needs downtime. I learned a hard lesson after my MacBook haddrive Crashed, that it may of been due to riding a bike back to the bus terminal and it turning on and off while I rode the bike.


** If you have your system all set up, that is you spent one day to set it up, the daily organizing will be quick and easy.

** Also keep up with daily reviews at least, at the end of the day clean up your trusted system.

Some Good resources for setting up your system below, :

Quick Setup Guides (Paid):

From David CO GTD: 



Outlook 2010:

From: Michae Llinenberger Author of Total Workday Control Microsoft Outlook.

Book: my suggestion for Microsoft Outlook user this book, as an expert guiding you in setting up a system.


For the Visual People like myself, who also have more time to do daily planing, here are some suggestions for mindmapping and tasks (WIndows only):

Outlook easy Task: Outlook EasyTask helps you to set up logical and intuitive connections between Visual Mind and MS Outlook.


If  you use Xmind Mind Mapping, you can c heck out this Synch tool. It will Synch between Outlook and Xmind Mind Map.

Xmind Synch for Outlook:

For Todo List or Task Mangement tools, and XMIND Mapping they also have a synch tool.


I use Mind NODE and love it. Mind Node Pro for Mac, Mind Node for Ipadmini or Ipad  or Ipad AIR :). and I use Omnifocus .

For this blog post, I was doing some research, and I found something cool.

Some wrote a workflow and script to sync Mindnode to Omnifocus.

Bellow are two links for how it done, the setup guides.

This is great, the author of the first link said “And I can open this up on my iPad and by pushing and holding down on a button it will open up the task in OmniFocus. Dude… I am totally geeking out on this right now.  This is better than porn.” (


Once you have this all set up, you will do far more, because you will have the time to get it done. Hope this post helps you, if you have any additional tips please post a comment.

My Mind Map Outline for this Post:







Distraction Free Trusted Location!

Organize your Project or Work File bucket.

Choose a location to store the data.

  1. Locally store your files.
    Good if you only work from one computer or location.
    My suggestion is to use a backup service like, or to keep a backup of the file off-site.  Crash plan also offers a free version of the software, that enables you to backup your computer locally or over the internet to a friends or family Computer. For more information on this check out the following link.
  2. Store your files in the Cloud
    Today there are many options where your files are located and edited on. No longer must one run around with a Floppy disk, or praying that the version of Microsoft Word at school is compatible with  the Mac at home. I bet the teachers are even using the Cloud as a place for student to hand in assignments, via shared folders.One one most popular option to store your files, for it’s easy to use is Dropbox. Dropbox is a cloud storage drive, where you can store, sync and share data.I personally am using Dropbox as my preferred method, and allow it to connect to my digital life with other applications, like Word, Excel, Mind-node, Omnifocus. Dropbox allows you to organize files and folder like you are custom to on the desktop, and the magic of occurs when it sync with your other devices. For me I need to get work done, and if I can save time by not having to search for a file, or folder it great.

Organize your Files
If you know of or are a fan of GTD, then the concept of a basket and trusted location are a huge part of it.

  • In my line of work as an IT Consultant, I notice that clients love to use the desktop as a dumping ground for anything they are working on or downloaded. Sometimes the client Computer Desktop mirrors the clients physical desk. So you say where do I come into this picture,  well I come in when  they come calling for support.
  • They start asking me why their two month old corporate computer that restarted due to some Microsoft or Apple Software update, is running slow when they log-on. First they use the desktop to store everything (Requires the computer to redraw all those icons), and secondly have outlook startup as one of the first program when the computer logs on.
  • You may also be asking yourself, how can this be so bad, the computer is fairly new, well let me explain briefly. The computer will have to redraw all the icons each time you update the Desktop Folder by adding a new file, which can end up slowing down your computer at startup.
  • Two none technical reasons why a messy desktop is a distraction and time waster:  Searching for the updated PowerPoint Slides, that your boss is asking for at 9:50 AM, to present at the 10 AM meeting with a new Client. Are you going to display that messy desktop up on the projector while you’re trying to find that file at 10AM? Image your self presenting at a meeting where the a new Client is present, and has very little time, but you wasted 10 minutes trying to look for the latest copy of the file.
  • I guess the end user logic is that by having it stored on the desktop, one is saving time by not having to navigate to the file elsewhere. If this logic were true then it would also work if you dumped all your paper bills, paperwork, and reports all over your physical Desk.
  • Having an  organized Trusted location of your digital files,  and a clean desktop  is a huge time saver.
    Your mind will be more clear, and your computer a bit faster.
  • Check out this Post for more information on messy desktop and slow computer from a technical standpoint.
  • Steps:
    1. Create an Inbox Folder in your trusted location be in your Personal Home Folder, Dropbox, or your Home Folder at work!2. Call it !nbox a trick I learned from a friend, so that it stands out as the first item. This is where you would temporarily store all the attachments and downloads you received during the day. The important thing is that you must clean this folder either daily or weekly. Find some time to sort out all the files in folder to the proper location, either your own folder system or a drive that your team shares.3. Call the second folder “Professional”, “Work”, or “ProjectX”, now this is the location you store all the work related stuff. I would not create a ton of subfolders, but enough to get you organized. At most adding a subfolder for the most important Project you’re working on, but no more. The less folders you create the easier it is to search for and recover files.4. Call the third folder Personal, for any none work files. Be mindful if it’s a work computer, that you not be able to take this data with you outside of the office. But it’s still great so that you separate work from personal life.  If you were ever to leave the Job,  it’s easier to persuade  IT or Complinace if it would be okay to have a copy of the Personal folder.


    The last folder I would have is a reference folder for “someday maybe” files. These are the files you only use at the end of the year review, or mid year review. Store things you hardly need, but know where to find if they are needed.

  • Sources:
    Crashplan: http://
    Twitter: @ITADDER

Cleaning up your inbox one year at a time!

Manage years of email, remove stress, and achieve email sanity!
A first step to recovery on the road to productivity!
Email management: Outlook, Gmail, and Apple Mail!

1. Search between year end and year start!
2. Move emails from year to archive_year
3. Repeat step 1 and 2, until you reach the current year!
4. Now trash none actionable emails!
5. Process actionable Items!

More Bloging to come!

– ITADDER !!!!