Monday, December 1, 2008

How To Set Up Your Trash, Shredding

Today is day four of my Getting Things Done GTD Thirty Challenge. Yesterday, we spent time identifying where all of your work comes from and the need to make sure that you channel everything into your GTD system through designated inboxes that you have clearly identified and thus will know to check them. I also encouraged you to make a word or excel file of your list of inboxes to start the basis for a daily review. If you haven't done day one, be sure and complete that step.

I'm going to work my way clockwise around the ring of the workflow diagram to continue our discussion of getting your GTD setup complete BEFORE you start collecting and processing your stuff. The reason for this is because if you are missing a piece of your setup, it will backlog your system.

The next component around the ring is your trash. I think trash does deserve some discussion and for the most part setting up your trash will be an easy thing. So, day two should be easy! Did I say go back and do day one yet? Oh I did, that's right. Well for those of you reading ahead, make sure you complete each step.

There are three things you can do with trash.

1. Throw it away without shredding
2. Shred it
3. Recycle it

In my case, I don't really recycle at this point so I have the first two.

When I first set up my GTD system, I noticed that during my processing I'd find things I didn't want to file but wanted to shred. Credit card offers, convenience checks, old statements. I hadn't really integrated my shredding into my system and therefore created a backlog of paper sitting in bags waiting to be shredded.

Then, I finally started taking my shredder on the road with me. I used to even throw the bags in my car and shred in the hotel while I watched TV. Once I got that backlog shredded, and wore out my shredder, I bought a new one.

TIP: Make sure that you buy a crosscut shredder that cuts your paper both ways. Here is an excellent shredder I'd recommend you pick up.

Fellowes 32197 Powershred SB-97Cs Shredder

When you process make sure that you have your trash can, shredder and recycling box right by you when you process your inbox. When I travel, I have a folder called "FILE, OUT, SHRED" and I put everything that needs shredding in there when I am travelling. (I no longer take my shredder with me...) Then, when I get home I shred it.

As a final word on trash, make sure that you throw away as much as you can. I did a video on trash and you might find more on trash that I failed to mention but I can't remember for sure.

Well, that's it for today. As I get time, I'll add more to my Getting Things Done GTD Thirty Day Challenge.