Setting a hard date when scheduling in my calendar

FiaFia
edited August 2012 in TRO General Discussion
If a task is going to take more than half an hour I schedule it in my calendar. Should I then set a corresponding hard date in remember the milk, so that when I look at my daily review I dont panic that I wont find time to get done? Nothing bad will happen if i don't do it on that day but I find it hard to remember which tasks I scheduled and which ones I decided I could get done in under half an hour.

Comments

  • edited August 2012
    Definitely not. Do not set a hard date on the task just because it is 30 min or longer and gets calendared. Only set a hard date if there is a date when bad things might happen (and set it to the date you need to DO it to prevent bad things).

    Key points:
    1. Add the task in your calendar as a tentative appointment--as a signal that the time itself is flexible, even to the point of moving days if needed. (See TRO Online Training for exact Instructions for flagging it as tentative, even if the calendar doesn't support that feature, like Google Calendar doesn't.)
    2. (Usually) schedule the 30+ min. task/step in your calendar on or around the soft date.
    3. As the day gets closer, i
    f it turns out that you accidentally scheduled it on a bad day, it's no biggie! You'll instantly notice that this appointment is tentative and move it out a day or two right on the spot, to balance your calendar. Your calendar is your time-budgeting tool, and you can always, at any time, rearrange or re-balance your calendar.
    Note: if the task also shows up with a hard date in today's Do Today, it signals to you that you probably can't move the 30+ min. time block off that day, but you can rearrange the time at will.Do NOT worry about changing the date in the task just because you move the tentative calendar appointment. There is no advantage to changing that soft date and it slows you down. Only change soft dates if something fundamental changed about the task--like:
    • - You completed the next step and it has a new next step (you must re-process it for the new next step), or
    • - It no longer matters as much (probably move it to Someday/Maybe or delete it).

    All of this means that the 30+ min. calendar entry may not appear on the exact soft date or hard date of the task. You'd think it would be a problem, but in actual practice it turns out to be brilliant. Larger-duration steps tend to be slightly more important than smaller ones, and this approach gives them three dates: soft, hard, and calendar. It makes it 50% harder to ignore, and naturally moves the larger things forward just a bit better.
  • Thankyou, that was really helpful.
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