Settling in at my new job and equipping my desk with the essentials. The computer was the first and most obvious one, but close behind are a good pen and a pad of sticky notes.

I am not always able to stick to the GTD method but the one thing I do nearly religiously is noting down anything that needs to be done, which is why I like to have pen and paper at hand at all times. Any time someone I am pulled into a meeting or discussion or anything similar, my first reflexive reaction is to grab the pen and paper.

(My other strongly ingrained GTD-ish habit is to always confirm at the end of a meeting what the next actions are, and who is responsible for which ones. Surprisingly often it transpires that we didn’t really know that yet, and were about to leave the meeting without pinning these things down.)

I am a pen snob. I cannot stand ballpoint pens. Gel pens slide over paper, making writing smooth and effortless. I make sure to always have a gel pen at hand: not just at my desk at work but also at my desk at home, in the kitchen next to the shopping list, in my handbag etc. At work I tag my pen with my name, so it doesn’t grow legs and go wandering.