GTD Stories: Enyo


Your name:
Betty Enyonam Kumahor, but most people just call me Enyo.

What do you do for work?
I find this question harder and harder to answer! My background is in management and technology consulting. I started my own consulting firm about 2 years ago and we have about 25 people in 3 countries doing mostly technology consulting but a fair bit of management and design-thinking consulting as well. I also spend a fair amount of time speaking and in governance as I hold a number of board and advisory positions.

Where do you live?
My home countries are the United States (Atlanta) and Ghana (Accra) though work puts me in Ghana fairly often.

How did you hear about GTD?
It was fairly early in my career and I was literally failing at my job at the time. Seriously! I thought I was going to get fired. I was on a business trip walking through I believe Dulles airport and stopped in a bookstore. I noticed the title Getting Things Done and thought “that is definitely what I need!” So I didn’t “hear” about GTD so much as saw a book surrounded by sparkling lights and I hopped and skipped towards it!

How long have you been practicing GTD?
I saw the book in 2002 maybe and started reading it right after that. I attempted my first full implementation about 5-6 months later. It’s a good thing you say practicing because I had to repeat that for about 4 more years! So I have been practicing GTD for 15 years at least.

How has GTD made a difference in your work and life?
It’s completely transformed it! How do I count the ways?

  • It has certainly made me more efficient. I was able to get an incredible amount of work done in less time and that helped me both professionally and personally.
  • When that happened I realized I wasn’t focused on the right things in my life and I wanted to change the balance. GTD helps me make that pivot fairly easily by just starting with my higher horizons view and trickling that new view into a different set of projects and actions.
  • GTD has also helped me significantly reduce my guilt. Guilt over what I didn’t do, who I didn’t help, what I said no to, or didn’t say no too. It helped me get a handle on my commitments and gave me the justification (aka excuses) to say yes to only the projects and actions that most aligned with my higher horizons.

I credit GTD as being the stepping stone for all my professional achievements and some of my personal ones.

What areas of GTD are you doing really well (or at least better than you used to)?
Renegotiating my commitments has been the most challenging aspect for me to get down in recent years. I simply hate saying no, and this was compounded because many of my professional achievements came because I was the one who would say yes and work the difficult problem as long as it took to get solved. It took a while for me to first get the Three-fold Nature of Work, then real prioritization across all horizons of focus, and then renegotiating my commitments.

What areas of GTD would you like to get even better at doing?
In terms of practice, I am quite solid at the moment. Of course every time I have said that I then realize there is some aspect that can indeed be improved and that ‘Oh, GTD has an answer for that too!” But for now, I would be chuffed to have a simplified cohesive coordinated set of tools for my GTD ecosystem so I can reduce the administration that happens with having as many tools as we sometimes need.

What is one piece of advice you would give to someone just starting out with GTD?
Keep at it! GTD is large toolkit of practices, techniques and habits and it can get difficult at times when you’re just starting. Nowadays there is such great information on GTD Connect, Productive Living and all the GTD training. Don’t hesitate to leverage on all that fantastic experience of others who have made the journey. GTD Connect is such a generous community so do get and try the advice. Make time in your schedule to learn GTD. Some of it will pay off immediately, but some later. But most importantly, keep at it—it’s SO worth it.

 





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