If you already have old, pre-TRO tasks in this task manager, here’s how to deal with them. You have a few options:

  • Start over. If you’re not attached to your old list, delete it and start fresh. (This is the overwhelming favorite among TRO trainees! Most old task lists are dysfunctional.)
  • Make them generic. Clear the major context and soft date fields for all of your tasks, and maybe the hard dates. This throws all the old stuff into the Unprocessed Tasks list.
  • Print them out. David Allen suggests this for GTD, and it might be a good idea for a few TRO trainees. Put them in your 2-week Inbox or your Inbox annex (large boxes on the floor) depending on urgency, and delete the tasks.
  • Convert them. If your task list was almost functional before and the above options don’t appeal, you’ll need to make your tasks TRO compliant. The smart dates and contexts are usually all wrong, so follow these steps:
    • Move all the old tasks to another folder or database, if possible. You want them hidden while you learn your new habits.
    • Work through the training until you finish all of the Processing lessons.
    • Convert them one at a time to the new TRO approach as you move them over. Don’t do this until you are comfortable with your new processing skills.