It’s time for another installment of my disorganized, ad hoc series on how I use Wunderlist with the Getting Things Done productivity methodology. In the meantime, I made a separate page with a handy list of key terms and definitions for you, since GTD has its own jargon. I am a teacher at heart, so I like to define things first.
The Question (edited for clarity)
Let’s say I have 3 Areas of Focus: health, work, self development. I would have one GTD list/folder and another folder for each AoF. My question, what do I put in every AoF folder in terms of additional lists? Do you implement the same lists as the main GTD per AoF? Or do you solely put in projects concerning that AoF and make sure all items are tagged properly and come together in one of the main GTD lists? (i.e. All scheduled/tickler actions come together in one list—so health/work comes together in one [list] but I would be able to filter this through using tags?)
My Answer (which I posted ages ago)
(Non-GTDers: This is where the abbreviations and jargon start to come flying at you.)
In Wunderlist, lists and folders are totally different concepts. A folder contains 1 or more lists. A list contains 1 or more tasks/NAs.
I’ve never found it useful to have one master NA list, although that is part of the GTD methodology. I find it much more helpful to sort my NAs by AoF or by Project. I have a folder called “Areas of Focus” with one list per AoF, and I have another folder called “Project Plans” with one list per Project.
Therefore, if I view my “Friends & Family” list, I see all the things I need to do regarding my friends and family. If I view my “Closet Purge” Project list, I see all the things I need to do to purge my closet.
I use very few tags, so my filtering is just by date. (What gets scheduled gets done.) Thus, I click on the Today smart list to see what NAs I have scheduled for today in each AoF and each Project. Since they’re separate lists in WL, they are visually labeled and separated within the Today smart list. I guess I could also tag my S/M list by AoF and future Project, but I don’t. One giant S/M list does work for me.
For a different perspective, Andreah at Frazz2Fab has a post about maintaining separate NA, S/M, etc. lists for each AoF that you might find useful.
Lists and folders are different things. The fewer of each you have, the better.