New Feature in FacileThings: The Mind SweepAUTHOR: Francisco Sáez
“Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them.” ~ David Allen
What is the Mind Sweep and why is it important?
Although the Mind Sweep is a tool that David Allen recommends that you use to get things out of your head and into your GTD system, the truth is that it is useful whatever personal management system you use. Even if you don’t use any in particular.
The Mind Sweep is the process of capturing all the things in your life that have your attention. This way, these things go from your head to the inbox of your system, so that they can be clarified and conveniently organized later. Your head is freed and your management system improves because it contains everything that matters to you.
The Mind Sweep is something you must do when starting to implement a new organizational system. Then you should do it with some regularity, and also in certain specific situations; especially after a period in which, for whatever reason, your system has not been properly updated and you have lost some control. And, of course, when you have completely fallen off the wagon.
I am not going to fool you, it is an exercise that requires some effort and some time, but in the end you will feel that everything is under control again. To facilitate the process, David Allen suggests reviewing a list of incompletion triggers that will help you explore all aspects of your personal and professional life in a guided way.
Doing a Mind Sweep with FacileThings
At FacileThings we have built a tool that will help you perform the Mind Sweep in a guided way whenever you need it, with two important advantages:
- You can customize the list of incompletion triggers and adapt it to your reality.
- The captures made with each trigger are memorized so that you can carry out the mind sweep in several sessions and on different days (for example, throughout a week).
You can find it in the Reflect menu:
The process is very simple. Select any trigger in the list on the left, read its contents, and write down everything that comes to mind. Clicking on “Capture X items” will send the list of captures to your Inbox.
If you do not have anything pending in relation to a certain trigger, click on “Nothing to capture here”. This leaves the trigger marked with zero captured items.
Continue selecting triggers and capturing things until you can’t think of anything else to capture. If you have a lot of things pending and the process becomes burdensome, you can spread the mental sweep over several days. When you return to this option you will see the triggers you have already used marked (as long as they have not been more than 7 days).
The trigger list
We’ve preloaded the recommended incompletion trigger list in the GTD® methodology, but you can customize it your way.
You can add new triggers that are interesting to you using the “Add Trigger” button (1) and edit any triggers already created with the “Edit” button (2).
Update the description of any trigger with more meaningful words or questions that are more suggestive to you, and remove triggers that don’t make sense to you (3).