What Vogons, chaos and colored notebooks have to do with my GTD project?

So, I’ve been implementing organizational schemes for my life since last year. I’ve been reading books, blogs and articles  about productivity, minimalism, simplicity, organization, habits and so on. And here are some thoughts about how it all started…

I’ve always been an organized person. I’ve always been sure I was. I enjoy having clean surfaces, with only the necessary things on top of them. I try to apply that on places like: my desk or my bedside table. Since my elementary school days I had labeled notebooks with my name, the teacher’s name, schedule, year. I like grouping things into categories,boxes or some classification. I loved that moment of the year when you had to decide which agenda or notebook to buy for the next one! Oh, what about pen and pencils? My school notebooks always had a color-based hierarchy system in terms of main title, subtitles, notes and dates.
During high school my colleagues would  borrow my notebooks to be photocopied before tests.  The complete and organized notebook of the class. Yes, it was mine. Well, times goes by, and suddenly, I hit into College. How to describe it? College was challenging and fun, like your favorite video game, and oppressive at the same time. You know the basic story: new friends, new and intriguing knowledge, that sensation of freedom, the dream to become a successful professional. My organizational skills helped me get through it with good grades and all.

 And then I started working. Like, a real job. The first job. And it was good, I could happily use my skills, for it involved quality management standards applied to civil construction, quantitative surveys and cost estimates. And then life goes on, I jumped into a (supposedly) better job, and then there was crisis, and I ended up working to a governmental autarchy.  And that’s when things started to get weird, I guess. But it took me some time to realize the change. Governments exist with bureaucracy, lots of it, Like Vogons, you know? The  galactic government’s bureaucrats in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series by Douglas Adams. Same thing in real life.

(Curious fact: illustrations by James Gillray inspired the appearance of the Vogons in the film based on Douglas Adams’ series)

Well, five years working with Vogons is kinda scary. If you attempt to change something in the process, a little thing, some minor detail that could get things a little bit better, there are tons of hindrances and obstacles. The attempts become increasingly tiresome. And that’s sad, because people eventually stop trying. And get used to chaos. Well, inefficient and unproductive kind of chaos, that is. (There are some few productive chaos…)

So I decided I needed to pursue other interests. I wanted to study again. I have that craving need for information and research.  So I reactivated a long forgotten project.  I enrolled in graduate school (what we call here “masters”). Then, after a year working full time on my day job and studying, I became aware I was stressed out. I was feeling anxious and overwhelmed every day.
And that’s when I started my “getting-organized-urgently” project, that later I called “GTD+Evernote“.
I started using the Pomodoro technique, I read David Allen’s book: “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity” and chose Evernote as my main tool for implementing the methodology.
I will to share my experience, share how I set up the scheme and share the plus and minuses next time!

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