David Allen 2 minute 30 second Audio Podcast: How to get back on the wagon (Allen’s title = “At least you have a wagon”)

Source: Amazon.com


Click here for a David Allen audio podcast on getting back on the GTD bandwagon.  Interesting high points:

  • Allen says even he falls off the GTD wagon
  • Keys to getting back on the GTD
  • Give yourself permission to get back on the wagon
  • Block the world out
  • Sit down
  • Just do it
  • Getting back on the wagon is not that hard, not nearly as hard a starting GTD

Give yourself permission?

When I heard Allen say this, I immediately thought of a children’s book, “The Story About Ping” BY Flack and Wiese (1933).  From Wikipedia here is the plot:

Ping is the name of a domesticated duck who lives on a riverboat on the Yangtze River in China. He gets sent out every morning to forage along the river with his relatives, and is expected back every evening. The last duck on the boat would get a swat with a stick and one day he is the last duck. He is afraid to return and spends the night on shore. When he awakens his boat is gone and he is soon caught by a boy on another boat where he worries about becoming their dinner. After some time the boy lets Ping go just as all his duck relatives are getting back on Ping’s boat nearby. Ping rejoins his family and happily receives the last duck swat.

And also from Wikipedia I learned that Captain Kangaroo read  “The Story About Ping” once a week for 17 years (along with Stone SoupMike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel, and The Little Engine That Could  all of which had longer runs on Captain Kangaroo).  I suspect the Captain taught me The Story About Ping! :-)

Mapping The Story About Ping to RestartingGTD:

  • Fear of the swat
    • = fear of weekly review and/or
    • = fear of letting go of denial and admitting “I am off the wagon” and/or
    • = fear of “THE SCARY INBOX”
    •  Source: Purchased from Shutterstock
  • Night on shore and the boat is gone
    • = Denying being off the wagon by ‘legitimate’ distractions
    • = Beginning to work without a trusted system because of guilt
    • = Old nightmares about being someone’s “dinner” return
    • = fear of getting back on the wagon being just as hard as starting up GTD for the first time
  • Back with family and taking the swat
    • = If you can just sit down do whatever you are fearing, the swat is surprisingly small
    • = Once you are home it is very good … mind like water on the water … GTD without quack ups … I could go on ….

bill meade

One thought on “David Allen 2 minute 30 second Audio Podcast: How to get back on the wagon (Allen’s title = “At least you have a wagon”)

  1. My great-grandmother used to tell us the story of Ping and his boat with the wise eyes. I love how you blended that piece of my childhood with timely GTD advice. Great post!

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