I’ve been using GTD for some times now, and the injunction to put every thought about something to be done into a collection device (I have a page on Roam and a file on my note taking app on my phone) is really powerful. I never noticed how much more focus and clearity were possible when everything I want to do is written somewhere, and thus I don’t need to keep mental tab on it.
To go back to the metaphor of this post, forcing myself to close every tab that is not directly in use is one of the best productivity hack I learned.
I fully agree with this, and that is where my problem lies. I find it difficult to re-create the ‘inspired’ state of mind when I first conceived about the idea just by reading the notes I took down at that time. I have this nagging suspicion that I’m missing something important. The best solution I have for now is to work on those ideas to re-create as much context as I can through association, but that doesn’t work as often as I’d like.
I think the collection part of GTD addresses exactly this problem. There’s two part:
You want to free your brain by writing what you want to do
You want to stop feeling like you forgot writing something down
The way proposed by GTD is to collect EVERYTHING. The goal is really to not have any commitment or desire stored internally, but collect everything outside of your brain. This solves the first problem if you give enough details, and the second problem when your brain learns that it can always find what it needs from your notes.
Anecdotically, it works for me.