As this week progressed I was looking forward to Friday, a day that for Christians, is called "good". This unique paradox is a central tenet of the faith and it got me thinking: aren't many of the concepts of GTD somewhat paradoxical?
Core principles like "mind like water" and "relaxed control" appear, on the outside to make no sense whatsoever but to those of us who dig GTD, they are cool and hip. We get it.
How would Jesus have practiced GTD? More fundamentally, what would he have called it? Maybe something like TPW (Treating People Well) or even HTBWC (How to Be A World Changer).
Some common GTD elements and how Jesus connected with them:
Collect: to prepare for his mission, Jesus spent 30 years in training , gathering all of the information and perspectives that would lead to fulfilling action for the three years subsequent.
Process: maybe a stretch here but I think it's safe to say that Jesus was a master at processing large quantities of information. He knew the Old Testament well and was in touch with his "boss" on a regular basis.
Organize: while Jesus did not have an elaborate GTD list system that I know of, his travels around Nazareth indicate a plan and system of doing things.
Review: what could be better than the weekly trip to the Synagogue? As a faithful Jew, Jesus would have spent every Saturday studying and learning from the best and brightest. There he could close any open loops and prepare for the week ahead. I guess you could say that Jesus gave new meaning to the adjective "religious" when it comes to practicing the weekly review.
Do: from the planning to the ultimate death and then subsequent actions of his followers, Jesus was a man of action. Not since Moses in the Old Testament did history see a man so determined to get things done.
Some other GTD puzzle pieces would have also been doable for Jesus such as:
Mind like water: Jesus spoke often of the avoidance of worrying and the ability to focus on what's really important in life. I could have talked about walking on water but I'll keep it GTD focused!
The runway to 50,000 foot view: most people consider Jesus' amazing acts of healing or other significant life events but let's not forget that this was a carpenter we're talking about. To be successful, and scholars think he was as a tradesman, he had to figure out with precision what each project required. Even in his years of ministry, he was fully immersed in the day to day details of his family and friends.
I really liked Leo's post linking action with the perspective of a monk. The bottom line: to effectively get things done over the long haul, one needs a spiritual foundation. Today is Friday of Holy Week.