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Discussion Forum > Lenten Challenge - I'm out!

Like Kramer said in Seinfeld's "The Contest" episode (while slapping $50 on the counter) - "I'm out!"

I have been using FVP since March 1. Yesterday, I was very tired and couldn't get myself motivated to get much done. So, I decided to switch to AF1 to get some momentum going. Luckily, I always add a week number to each task I add to my Remember the Milk FVP list. I then decided to use each week's tasks as a separate page for AF1. Got a few more things done than I would have yesterday, once I finished moving things around (playing with my lists).

I wonder how everyone else is doing with their Lenten Challenge.
March 24, 2017 at 14:23 | Unregistered Commentertomcal
Good question!

With 21 days still to go, who wants to give a progress report?
March 24, 2017 at 15:22 | Registered CommenterMark Forster
While not formally entering, I think I said I would try to last at least March on one system for its own benefit (not in observance of Lent) and was therefore counted. I didn't succeed. I am still keeping notes and actions ad hoc in a notebook, but while I do find this helpful, I did not find it sufficient, and my reviews are sporadic. Right now I am using Brian Tracy's 4 list recommendation (master, monthly, weekly, daily) with ABC prioritization.
March 24, 2017 at 17:35 | Unregistered CommenterAustin
Still going strong with DIT and TOC. It's been great, actually. Very focused, backlogs going away, lots of results, lots of flow. I just wish I could communicate better how it all works. :-)
March 24, 2017 at 17:41 | Registered CommenterSeraphim
Sorry to hear that tomcal.

FAF is still doing great. I think the major reason for this is the concept of "reverse" or "repellent standing-out", where not only I am sensitive to things that are ready and I want to be done, but I am also sensitive to things that repel me, things that I really do not want to do, things that I have been procrastinating. These "reverse stand-out" items I then re-word, schedule for "focus time", delegate, remove, or outright just do.
March 24, 2017 at 18:15 | Registered Commenternuntym
I'm still going great with AF1 -- and with a hand-written list in a small notebook. I had five days when I was attending a workshop and so had no discretionary time, but still had my notebook with me and added a few things as I thought of them, but didn't have any time to work the list. But that seems to be within the rules as AF1 (and all Mark's systems) are for discretionary time, and I didn't have any at all as the workshop ran from 8 in the morning until 9 at night.

Now that I'm home again, I'm practically living off my list again, and loving it. I'm making great progress on all the important things, and keeping all my projects moving forward. Somehow, I don't think I'll want to stop after 40 days...
March 25, 2017 at 4:33 | Unregistered CommenterKiwi Erik
I added paper early on, and dropped the digital list about day 20.

My plan is to finish the season with my old standby, with a few experimental changes:

Binder. Catch-all list in the front (printout from digital), coded for value and urgency (very quick coding). Every morning fill in a Day Page listing tasks and appointments, including habits-in-training. Add up time estimates and laugh at the total. Highlight the top five for the day. Draw a line. New tasks usually get added below the line. That's faster than turning to tomorrow's page, and doesn't fill that page with things that might not be important. Each used Day Page automatically becomes part of the catch-all list. Every few hour adjust estimates, compare actual vs estimate so far, add remaining time, adjust goals.

Anything can be selected for the top five. A single phone call. A few hours on a project. A habit in danger of slipping. Something I'm resisting. Something I enjoy but feel guilty doing.

- DIT (don't add it to today's list)
- Productivity Planner (pick 5 things and estimate time, then compare plan to actual at end of day)
- Five-Minute Journal (Morning: gratitude, select 3 things to do to make the day great, affirmation. Evening: what went well, what I could have done to make it better)
- Jane Westman (catch-all to capture and select 5 things for the day)
- Franklin-Covey (list, rank)
- Value, Urgency and Time, from a member here (can't find the post)

At the beginning of the challenge, I was resisting my old standby, but now I'm looking forward to it.
March 25, 2017 at 23:43 | Registered CommenterCricket
I've fallen off the Bounce wagon. Or rather, made a deliberate and dignified change of vehicle. I couldn't be doing with Bounce's constant traverses of the list. I found that all the activity was happening at the bottom of the list with newly entered tasks. I wouldn't bother to scan up the whole list when I knew there was something near the bottom that I wanted to get to. Then I saw a post on Fast FVP and I was impelled to go back to that.

I'm happier with the structure that an FVP selection gives. I keep open the option of working the list on Fast FVP principles or with alternative choices of question.

I think I've learned from the Bounce experiment: I've got a stronger sense of the importance of radical weeding of the list and of reading it through several times a day.
March 26, 2017 at 11:05 | Unregistered CommenterChris Cooper
At this point I haven't switched to using a new system, but I also haven't using the current system either (although I add to the list, and also I write down what I am currently working on and breaking those down into smaller steps, which is also part of the system I'm using). Normally I would have kept changing systems, and/or just doing whatever I think of doing without a system (I think Mark called that "drift mode" in one of his books).

So instead of changing systems, right now I'm in drift mode. At least, as far as selecting what to work on. I am getting some good stuff done despite that. I started working out and bicycling this weekend, and I took my car into the shop at last.
March 27, 2017 at 15:35 | Unregistered CommenterDon R
By the strict letter of the law, I'm out of the challenge.

By the more lenient letter of the law, my forced use of FVP over a week or two led to me gradually figuring out a way to reduce the length of my ridiculously long task lists (my usual obstacle with any time management system), and that then led me to gradually reinventing Anthony Robbins' RPM system :-)

So that's what I'm using now but with an intuitive do-what-stands-out approach at the Do-Today level (inspired by FVP) instead of Mr Robbins' schedule-it-or-die methodology, which I have long suspected only really works if you are Anthony Robbins.

I'm quite happy and comfortable with what attempting the challenge has led me into.
March 27, 2017 at 20:18 | Registered CommenterFrank
And...even the second system didn't survive a day out of town, a few nights of bad sleep, my daughter staying home sick, cloudy weather and a few other events, all of which I know from experience are likely to throw me off track.

After two weeks of that, I'm finally rebuilding my routines. Again. A system that survives being put down and reboots well is very important to me, since I need to do it often.

I naturally fell into the system I described earlier, except for formally noting the value and time estimate of each task. Since I haven't used that step before, I didn't force it. I got my top 5 things done, and several more. Today the focus is on things I remember as being valuable, without referring to my notes. In the next few days I'll go through my old notes to see what else I want to work on this week.
April 10, 2017 at 20:08 | Registered CommenterCricket
One change. Today I added bits from Planner Pads, described in new thread. Summary: Each week list your tasks and projects according to category (could be project, life area, context, whatever), then rewrite just a few to each day.
April 10, 2017 at 20:33 | Registered CommenterCricket
Correction, I have used formal time estimates before -- actually, quite often, as a sanity check and so I know how long things typically take -- but not value.

I'm still using all the steps from Five Minute Journal, but the Things to Make Today Great step is done on the Week Page, not the Day Page.
April 10, 2017 at 21:28 | Registered CommenterCricket