Sweep Time (Projects, Reading, Repairs & Upgrades)

Meggin McIntosh
4 min readJan 20, 2023
iStock by Getty Images: mihalec

It’s time for another set of sweeping prompts. The categories for this set are Projects, Reading, Repairs, and Upgrades. As always, these categories are both specific and broad at the same time. That’s intentional. To access the prompts to use, you’re welcome to download the materials that accompany this article here.

Although I could write about every single one of the bullet points for Projects, that would make for a mighty long article…so maybe I’ll simply say something about a few of the prompts. Oops, turned out to be quite a few…

Ongoing — Can you name all of your ongoing projects? Very, very few people can because there are so many — and because so often we don’t name some of our projects AS projects. For now, do a sweep of the projects you can think about.

To start — What is waiting in the wings that you want to get started sometime…soon. Jot those down.

To finish — Are there some projects that are close to the finish line and it would feel so good to finish? Of course there are. Write those down.

To clarify and process — Not long ago, I had this mass of something in my head that I was thinking was a project but it was in a tangled ball. My coach pointed out that it seemed it was two goals/projects that were tangled up. My commitment to my coach was that I would see if I could get those two untangled. Well! It turned out that there were SIX projects all tangled up! And I sat and clarified what they were and processed them using the Hunks, Chunks, & Bites process I’ve been teaching for years. And what a difference. And it didn’t take too long to do. So what do you have that needs clarifying and processing?

Recorded on various legal pads — Whether it’s legal pads or any other size pad, many project details and to-dos are waiting there for you. Capturing all of those in one place will make such a difference and relieve so much mental stress.

In calendar — Ditto.

In journal — Ditto.

In planner — Ditto.

On to-do lists — Ditto.

On Post-it® notes — Ditto.

On scraps of paper — Ditto.

On smartphone — Ditto.

From inbox — Ditto.

From meetings — Ditto.

From discussions — Ditto.

From brainstorming — Ditto.

Scratched on the back of envelopes (or the like) — Ditto.

Project manager — Do you need one? Do you have one and need to communicate with that person? Do you wonder what one is?

To let go of — A personal favorite of mine. Name it and let it go.

For another lifetime (apparently)

I can imagine there is a whole lot shaking loose in your brain at this point. And maybe a little bit of brain that is just shaken up!

Reading is our next category….

Maybe you’re a reader and maybe you’re not. I know you can read, so that isn’t what I mean. But maybe you are someone who happily reads whenever possible and wishes for more time to read or maybe you’re someone for whom reading is a necessary means of acquiring information or proceeding through particular work or personal commitments. Either way, this list will generate some to-dos that will go into your system by getting them out of your brain, which is not a project management system as I think I might have mentioned a time or two.

The prompts for this category refer to personal and professional reading. Let’s acknowledge that you have a lot you need and want to read. You need to delineate what you can and then figure out when and where and how — and what alternatives there might be. See what comes up with this set of prompts.

The last category in this Module is Repairs and Upgrades. The good news is that nearly everything you own *could* be upgraded. The bad news is that nearly everything you own *could* be upgraded. And even more good news is that you can be circumspect about what you do and don’t upgrade. Just because there is a new version doesn’t mean it’s a better version — and doesn’t mean that you want to spend the time and money on it.

Think through the ideas listed on page 43 to see if you need to add some items to your overall task capture.

Go and invest 15–30 minutes or so going through these prompts and let’s see how many more index cards you come up with! Review the mindset modules (here’s one of them) as needed if you need a reminder about the mindsets to maintain throughout your sweep.

Here I am the most recent day I was leading a mind sweep for about 50 people. I wore a rainbow shirt and rainbow necklace to symbolize the “arc” of how this process goes.

Remember the rainbow!

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Meggin McIntosh

Meggin McIntosh, “The PhD of Productivity®”, invests time & energy with people who seek ways to be overjoyed instead of overwhelmed. https://meggin.com