Managing Online Projects in 5 Easy Steps

You have clients, deadlines and tons of work to do. You have to deliver results and stay on top of your lists. You have to be productive. Otherwise you’re out of the game. And being out of the game is not fun. I had an online business for more than 10 years and I pretty … Read more

iPhone productivity application reviewed: WhatTasks

The GTD galore is spreading along quite nicely, not only in a vertical direction, by reaching more and more adepts in its traditional western cultural space, but also in new spaces, some of them well over the Atlantic Ocean. One of these days I found the first Brasilian iPhone application which claims to implement the core GTD rules. The application is called WhatTasks and it costs 3,99 USD at the Apple AppStore (on the WhatTasks web page they are advertising a 4,99 USD price, but they also say that “international pricing is available”, so I guess I’ve been included in some kind of discount…). I’ve been contacted directly by the developer, Felipe Belo, a few weeks ago, with a polite request to tell my opinion about this. So, after I finally set up my new 3g iPhone – a white one, you can imagine that? – I thought I should give it a try.

The first thing to know about WhatTasks is that it comes in 2 flavors, a free, limited version, and a full featured version at the price of 3,99 USD. The limited version is called WhatTasks Lite and I installed it on my iPhone 2 weeks ago. What this application is doing is basically a list management. You can create as many lists as you want and add items to them. Once an item is done you can check it out. That’s basically all. It manages the “what” in your everyday activities.

But the real power of the application comes in the paid version (this is somehow predictable, if you ask me). The paid version also gives you access to the “when” and “where” of your activities. This is one of the core principles of GTD: you are doing actions in contexts and at specific dates. You are not just a robot which does everything as it comes, regardless of the specific time or place: you can group your spaces of action into contexts, and you can also group your doing intervals in time chunks: right now, tomorrow or even someday / maybe, if you are not sure of the exact schedule. By adding the “when” and “where” dimensions to the “what” of an action, WhatTasks really comes close to the GTD aware user.

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My Most Downloaded Mind Maps – reloaded

Mind mapping is not only one of my favorite’s way of brainstorming and idea forging, but it was also a constant topic on this blog, since the very beginning. I first published a mind map on 8th February 2007 more than one an a half year from now. It was a Meeting Mind Map Template, … Read more

GTD Tips: It’s Not How You Feel About What You’re Doing…

But about what you’re not doing… Yeap. Precisely. These GTD tips are just short sentences synthesizing in a very simple way some of the GTD concepts I found interesting or somehow become especially close to me. There are already 3 other GTD tips available. All these tips are coming in just one line of text. … Read more

Put Your Blog Into A Mind Map

There were several posts here at DragosRoua.com, related to mind mapping, over the last two years. In fact, there were so much posts about mind mapping that I had to create a separate category for them. From an introduction of how and why to blog with a mind map, up to a recap of my most downloaded mind maps, I wrote extensively about this. For the newcomer, mind mapping is a writing technique, which expand the linear thinking by letting you write in different “directions” or “nodes” of a mind map. This seems to be the brain’s most convenient way of representing reality, and it is often used as a creativity enhancement tool.

I found mind mapping very useful when it comes to speed up my management activities. Such as maintaining a blog. Like this one. You know, writing on your blog is a completely different beast than maintaining it. It requires a different set of skills, it takes a certain amount of time, and, like all other activities, can be optimized. If I can use mind mapping to streamline my blogging activity as a whole, why not do it?

My blogging process is the result of several different things: the software I use, the ideas that I want to write about, the posts, the categories, the plugins, the downloads, the revenue strategy… Quite a bit of stuff, right? And is not from the same league, as you already saw, it’s a mix of information, skill, activity and strategy. The challenge is to keep this in a manageable structure.

One very important management principle says: keep everything visible. If there are things on your business that are not visible to you, chances are that your customers won’t seem them either. Keep a broader perspective, try to always look at whole picture. And there is nothing more convenient for the “whole picture” than a mind map.

So, I put my entire blogging process on a mind map, and started to unfold it. Here’s the result:

As I already told you, blogging is a mix of different activities, information and tasks. Must be all visible in order to keep a consistent perspective, right? Must put together all items that create the blogging process and my whole blogging process look like this:

  1. headline
  2. categories
  3. posts
  4. revenue
  5. promotion
  6. plugins
  7. downloads

As you may see, there is no specific order in which I added them, and no consistency, some of them are information, like posts and categories, some of them are activities that I have to perform, like promotion and monetization, and some of them are pieces of software, like plugins. Not all blogs may have all the items listed above, but my specific setup does, and I’ll take a wild guess that the vast majority of blogs are pretty much like this.

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7 Simple GTD Rules For Bloggers

We all know what GTD can do for top managers or busy businessmen, this is what David Allen is doing all day long, training big guys to get things done. But GTD is not necessary a business-only process. It can be used with great results in other activities, such as blogging. If you are not … Read more

Do It For Yourself – who’s benefiting from your actions?

Remember that we started this series with a fundamental sentence: you are the most important person in your life. You, and only you, are responsible for your actions, for their outcome, and for the level of energy that fuels you as a result. You’re responsible for your wealth or poverty, for your relations, for your … Read more

Do It For Yourself – who’s driving your actions

My first post in the series “Do It For Yourself” was about the “how” in your actions. If you come here directly, and didn’t have the chance to look at the whole series here’s a little recap, to help you better understand the concepts. First, and foremost, you are the most important person in your … Read more