Posted by Josh | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 08-03-2009
Tags: GTD, lists, perspective, productivity, Remember The Milk
Recently I’ve started using the “Estimate” tag on RTM as a way to organize tasks by how long I think they will take. I’ve found it’s been a real help in deciding what to do at a given time, especially when I have short breaks in between meetings or larger tasks. After trying it out for a bit, I quickly decided that it was now a rule that all recorded next actions must have a time estimate attached to them.
One of the really nice features of RTM is its flexible search system. For example, let’s say I had about 20 minutes to spare, and wanted to see if there was any low hanging fruit available. I simply type in “timeEstime:’<20min’ and voila, a list of tasks that I could easily get out of the way. I’ve found it to be quite a useful trick when faced with 15 – 30 minutes of useful time on my hands. It doesn’t happen that often, but I’ve found that it definately has decreased the number of simple one-off tasks malingering on my lists.
So what do you think? Are time estimates worth their effort, and helpful in planning your daily work? Or do you find them inaccurate and a waste of time, especially for small, low-level tasks?