Let’s learn how to use and maximize ClickUp’s FREE GTD template! This Getting Things Done (GTD) template is based on the system by David Allen — the main goal is to help you organize tasks and projects by breaking them up into actionable work items. Keep on reading to learn, step-by-step, how to use this template!
P.S.: Click the hyperlinked text to go exactly to the part of the video where we mention each feature!
Getting the template into your ClickUp account is very easy, all you have to do is hit the plus sign, click on New Folder, go to Templates, then click on Community, and finally, click on Getting Things Done and Use Template. At this point, you can choose what items you want to import, such as due dates, task statuses, etc.
Then we are following the instructions document to better understand how to use it. It’s divided into sections and simply following the instructions step-by-step is a great way to get started quickly. It will help you break up your tasks into categories so you can focus on the more important things first without getting distracted by everything else.
A very important aspect that needs to be considered is how big your team is because this template can be customized depending on the people on your team. For example, if you have multiple people on your team, a good idea is to make a folder for the team and then give each person a folder or list. If your team consists of just you and some other person, you could simply share one space together.
With ClickUp GTD template, you can filter the tasks by using tags, which comes in handy because you can choose what you want to see, and include or exclude specific tags. In this video tutorial, we show an example of using a Next steps tag, which gives you a breakdown of what is coming up next, who’s going to work on that task, etc. You can also use that Next actions tag for one-off tasks.
Watch Amalie Show You How To Setup ClickUp GTD :
Read The ClickUp GTD Setup Video Transcript
Amalie Shaffer 0:01
Hi, my name is Amalie Shaffer with Systematic Excellence Consulting, and I am doing a series on the different templates that ClickUp provides for free when you have an account. And so today I’m going to go over the Getting Things Done or GTD template. This is based on the Getting Things Done method by David Allen.
So when you first want to I have it in split screen because I want to walk through some of the steps that ClickUp recommend. So to get this into your into your account, if you hit the plus sign, and we’re going to go to New Folder, we’re going to go to templates, we’ll click on community, and then we’re going to click on Getting Things Done. And we’re click on Use Template, we can either import due dates, based on what they are in the template, or we can remap them and say that we want to pick today as the starting day.
Maybe we want to skip weekends, and we want to import all tasks as open. And then we don’t want to pull in archived, I mean, you can but that’s not I’m not going to pull them in today. Okay, so then we’re gonna go ahead and hit Use Template. And then it’s going to actually populate the template in here for us once it’s done. I have already, so you can see down here. There it is. So when you first come in, it’s going to bring you to the Document View because they have an intro, and I’m actually going to walk through all of these steps. But I have it over here so we can kind of follow the instructions follow along.
So what you’re gonna see here is the intro, it tells you how to add it to your favorites, or add the guide to your favorites. So we’ll go ahead and do that. So if we just click down here, and then we click the three dots, then we can say Add to Favorites. And then we can say this is the GTD guide, go ahead and save to favorites. So when we do that, then it’ll be located up here in our favorites section. So you can see right here is the guide is there for us. Okay, so now what we’re going to do, and then if you want to set this to the view that pops up for everyone, then you can make this your default view, I actually don’t know that I would personally do that.
But you can do that. Because I think what I want is the default view is going to be the list, which we’ll go over in a moment. But it tells you how to do that here. I prefer the the list like where the tasks are going to be to be the view, but you can, you know, choose however you wish it to be. So now what I want to do is I want to walk through actually, let me come back over here. And I’ll just walk through this first. Okay. So it talks about the intro here. And then it talks about lists, first folders, you could make getting things done as a space, and then make each of these lists that they’ve created us folders if you want. I think that I don’t know.
I mean, I guess it depends on how many people you have. So let’s say you had multiple people on your team, if you made it a folder, then each person could have like next actions folder, each person could have a next actions list or a scheduled list. Versus it all being in one place. So I think this is sort of setup if it’s maybe just one, you know you one person and maybe you have one additional person with working with you. But if you have a bigger team, you might want to think about doing it as getting things done as a space and then having folders for each of these categories here that will go through in a moment.
Okay, so then if you go to Home, this talks about the different kind of phases of the methodologies. So this talks about for like new to do items they’re talking about like in the home screen, you can add them as reminders. So if you’re, you know, working on something, but you don’t want to forget to do something like that. And the way you do that is you just come over here and you can add a reminder here So whatever that is, you know, create task for new whoops something like that, you know, whatever you need to remind yourself about. And then it’ll be down here.
And then later, if you need to, you can turn this into a task by clicking Add to List. And then it’s going to ask you what list you want to add it to. And you can, you know, either remove the due date or keep the due date. Alright, so let’s go back over here. So that’s the idea is that you have a way to capture any new to do items that come up throughout the day as you’re working. And then the next step is clarify. So if it’s gonna take less than two minutes, you can do it in the moment, take care of it, or then you can delegate it, by turning it into a task, assign it to someone giving it a due date, adding any details that are needed for that task, or, you know, potentially not necessarily delegated, but assign it to yourself just for another day.
And then we’ll go over how to categorize those. And then next thing is organizing it into the right list. And we’re like, so I’m going to go over those categories in a moment. And then making sure that you’re reviewing and going over this system regularly, they recommend here making it a recurring reminder, which I think is great. And you could have a recurring task to remind you, and then since get to work, okay, so let’s go over the list. So this is just a breakdown of what they are. And then I’m going to show you them in the actual lists inside the folders. So next actions are one are tasks that are well defined, they have instructions are assigned to someone, they have due dates, all of that, then you can have your calendar view.
If you sync your calendar, then they’ll be able to match up and you can see kind of what you have going on. One way to do that is in the homescreen. If you sync your calendar here, then you can see whatever appointments or whatever’s on your schedule, you can see that lined up here with whatever you have going on for the day. Okay, and then this gives you instructions on how to do that. Okay, so waiting on. So waiting on is if you’ve delegated something, and you’re waiting on someone to do something. So basically, you would want to move tasks that have been delegated to this particular list. And you can see that over here, I just moved my face out of the way. So you can see the waiting on delegated.
It’s important to they have a custom field to add for waiting on. So you’d put their name in there, you want to add a due date. And what you could do is keep the task assigned to you as a reminder, and then make a separate task for them to like for their actual action. So I’ll go through that in a moment. And then once you complete the task, then you would close it out. This is a note here it says if further work needs to be done on the task after they get back or after they get back to you, then you would want to move it to another list. And then what it’s saying is that you want to take away their name and the waiting on custom field. So you know that they’ve done their part. And now you’re just waiting on another part.
They’re saying that here, if you have multiple people that are you’re waiting on multiple pieces for the for the overall task, then you might want to create subtasks for each of them. So that way you can check off when they’ve gotten their part done. Okay, then the next one is the project list. And so this is where the project list is where you’re going to really plan out your full project. And so they recommend having a list per project or creating sub tasks for it. So you know what, let’s do this. Let’s, let’s go over next actions first, actually in the list will go one by one. Okay. So in next actions, this is what it’s going to look like. And one of the first things I always do is I want to see all the empty statuses so I can see what I have going on.
And I’m going to just flip this around so I can see what’s to do. And so one of the things that they use is called context Third, the context options so you can add additional context. So this helps you to organize. So you have work home, accounting, call, other, right. So if there’s other things, maybe it’s you know, if you want to split out work into client work versus, you know, your internal business work, something like that, then you could add an additional label here. Now, they give you instructions over here. So I have that split screen, this is just the same document done in context that talks about. It talks about the what the contexts are and how you edit those, you can create a context that talks about that here, how to do that, I’m going to show you that right now. So if in here, you want to edit the field, then you would just come in here and add a new option. If you wish, I’m not going to add another option right now, because I like what they have. So that’s fine. And then just save the view.
They have an effort, custom field here where you can, you know, put how many stars or effort the tasks going to take plus the time estimated. And I think that’s really important, particularly if you have people that are tracking their time. So you can see the gap between what you thought was how long it was going to take versus how long it actually took. And so this area is going to be next actions, meaning it is clearly defined. And there are instructions in the task, and people are able to take action on it. One of the things that they recommend is having a view that breaks down next actions. And I’m going to show you that in a minute. But so going over next actions good to go, we’ve seen that, then you might want to have a calendar view for next actions.
Now, the only things that show up on the calendar are tasks that have due dates. So we could add due date here. And if we did that, then we would see that and then if you go over to the calendar view, then you’d be able to see those here. Now, they also have a board view available for you, I typically work in the List View but in the template, they provide the Board View plus all of the other views as well. So the Gantt the timeline, Workload and Table depending on what you prefer to work in. Like I said, I typically work in the List View so that’s what I’m going to work in but you have those other options. Okay, so now let’s go over to so we got the calendar and for scheduled for this I would use if you have meetings, calls with clients, anything that has a specific kind of like one off you know, during this call kind of thing has a specific date that you’re doing it on or you know, whether maybe it’s an event you’re doing or something like that, I would add those here and then give it a context, due date, time estimate, and then effort.
Okay, so then you have the waiting on and delegated and so this is tasks that you’ve assigned and again as I go through these what I typically do like I said is I want to see if there’s any empty statuses you know, what’s the process to move it through. And one thing you can do if you want to have with if you want to have an in progress and then closed you could always add that as well. So you know maybe you want to edit the list statuses and then in order to see closed you can say you want to show close tasks and then you can see close so then now you can see kind of what the flow is here.
So waiting on our delegated that is any any tasks that you’ve given to someone to do so then let’s go over the project list next. Well, let me see if I missed anything waiting on okay, we talked about this is delegated. And I’m going to go over the project list and then show you sort of how you would use waiting on and the custom field that they have where it’s waiting on it has the person’s name here. So what they recommend is either having a list per project or using subtasks so if you just want to have one list with all of your projects, then Here you would have it, you would have the task here.
And then you would add subtasks for each of the actions that, you know need to happen next. So if this is, you know, we’ll call this task one, task to task three. And then let’s say, for project two, we have task one task, oops. Okay, so this would be one way of doing it, where then you would give due dates to the subtasks. And maybe this overall project is starting. But it’s not going to be done until next Monday. This is just asking me if I want to change the due dates. So I’ll just say okay.
But basically what it’s doing, it’s reflecting what I had already set, which is the same day. But let’s say we’re spreading this out over the weekend, it’s going to take all week to get each of these done. Then let’s do the same thing. Let’s say this one’s starting on the 31st. So I’m going to click over here. And let’s say the end date will be the following week. And so then we would set this we’ll say this is going to happen on the first. Oops, I didn’t mean that. We’ll start here. Okay. And then we’ll say this starts on the air is due on the eighth as well. And then maybe this one is due Friday. The fourth. Nope, the 11th. Sorry. Okay. Um, oh, yeah. I said, I said the due date. So sorry, let me change this again. We’ll do Okay, there we go.
So then we had set this with in the time that we said that it would be due, there we go. Okay. So that’d be one way to set it up where you have a project per task, or what you could do is have a project, each project would have a list. So if I came in here and did project list, and then I can just duplicate this, and we’ll call this project number two. And we’ll just go ahead and copy that list. So if that is the case, then Oh, it did it choice. Oh, there it goes. Okay, so now we have each of our projects, and maybe then you put like the clients name, or the name of the project, as instead of project list two, you’d put the clients name there for the listening.
Okay, so then what we’re going to do is, this talks about delegating, and next options. So let me just go back over to the project list, explanation. And what this talks about is moving these next actions into the actual next actions list. So the one way we can do this is it recommends adding a custom field or a tag called next action so that you can later filter for it. So what I’m going to do, I actually already have that. And what we would do is just put next steps on the item that is coming up, or you can make it dependent. So if you want to make this dependent on the other one, instead of having to do it manually, then we would just say dependencies, and we would say that this one is blocking. So let’s go into. Wait, what are we in a project list to Whoops.
Okay, so what we can do is set up dependencies. So I’m going to click on this run project list too. So we want to say that it’s blocking. So I’ll browse, go to our getting things done. We’re in project list two. And we want to see the sub tasks of it. And so we want to say that task one is blocking Task Two. Done, then what we can do is we can do the same thing for task number three, and say that task two is blocking that. So we’ll just go to dependencies, we want to say that it’s blocking, we want to browse this, go to getting things done, we’re in project two, project one, click on the sub test so that they pop up. And we want to sit at blocking number three, and then hit done. So now we have dependencies for each of these.
So it’s a lot easier to show or to so that way, when task one gets done, it’ll be you know, it’ll pop up and essentially open this task up saying that the dependency has been cleared. But this is, technically the next step is task one. So what we’re going to do is we’re also going to add that to task one here. Okay, great. So now that we’ve done that, then we want to be able to see all of our next actions. And again, next actions are tasks that have instructions. So what I would recommend doing for that is coming in here and making sure that there’s instructions here.
So whatever, you know, maybe it’s the link to Google folder, you know, with assets, and then maybe it’s instructions here. And then maybe there are a checklist items to say, you know, what needs to be done for this task, or additional subtasks. So you can actually nest in, I think you can go to three levels in with subtasks. You know, for this particular thing, I do recommend when you are ready to take action, make sure that the steps are broken down so that it’s easier, not just for you, but for your team also to just go ahead and take action on them. Okay, so then what we’re going to do is we’re going to go to next action.
So we’re going to pretend like there are instructions in each of these. And they’re ready to be have actions taken on them. And that’s great. So we know, let’s say we’re going to delegate these. So what we can do is open this task up. And we can go to add to another list. And we’re going to go to waiting on. Okay, great. So now that is in there. Okay, so now what we can do is, now that we’ve added that to the list, and we’ll say we’re also delegating this one. And we’ll go ahead and put this to add to list. Waiting on. Okay, great.
So now that we’ve done that, now we’ll look at the waiting on. So now we’re going to have our two additional lists and how you can see that it says it’s from another list. So the naming convention definitely is important at this point. Because it could get really confusing if we don’t get really clear on those on who’s doing what. So let’s say we’ll just add a name here. So we’ll do normally And then maybe this is person number two, person three. Okay, and so now we know that this has been delegated. And we’re waiting on these people to get this part done. And I’m kind of overseeing the whole thing. So I’ll put myself there. We’ll actually call this person number one. Okay. All right.
So now we can start to see Alright, these are the things I’m waiting on. And I’m overseeing, so I’ll put my name at the top. And now we’re going to get when we assign these tasks to ourself, we’re going to get notifications about these to check in with the person so I’m just going to assign it to myself. I can assign the subtasks to myself as well. Now this would just be for a reminder. Now if you wanted to, you could assign these subtasks to yourself and the person that is joining them. I don’t have anyone else in here right now. But let’s say then you would add this to whoever else you’re working with because you’ve delegated that to them.
Okay, so to get a view of everything that you have coming up like next actions, but also incompassing for seeing your project lists, what you can do is if you come to the folder level now what they have set up already with the different tasks are organizing it by context. So the home the work with the account counting calls. So if you do that, then that’s how they’ve created these different views. So one additional view that we’re going to create is the next actions. So I’ve already added the list. So you just go to List View, Add View, which I did that already.
Let’s rename this to next actions. Or you could call it like priorities or something like that. So what we’re going to do is we’re going to filter. And we’re let’s filter by, we’ll filter by location first, meaning it’s going to pull in all of the things that we have going on. So we’ll pull in next actions will pull in scheduled project, let the two project lists that we have. And then, so now, it is grouped by the statuses that we have set up in those lists. But maybe we want to group it by due date. So that way, we can see kind of what’s going on. And then the last thing we can do is we can add a filter for tags. And we can say and meaning we just want to see any tasks in the locations that we selected, and has a tag of next steps.
But if you want to see kind of the overall picture we’re going to put or next steps. I’m sorry, I meant, let’s do and first and tags. Oh, we need to show sub tests as separate tasks. So there, so here, we pulled the sub, I selected sort of collapsing all of them, we want to see all the subtasks as separate tasks, which does it here. And then you can do something like you want to see the task location, so you can see the name of the project. And if we want to see empty statuses in any closed tests, we can do that as well. And we want to see tasks in multiple lists. So then we’ll get an idea of kind of what’s going on here as far as like what the next steps are. Now, if we did, or it’s going to pull in all the tasks in those locations coming up along with our tag of next steps.
So then this gives you a breakdown of you know, what do you have coming up, you can see the due dates you could add here, if you want to see the assignee. You know, you can see who it’s assigned to, we can also group by assignee, if we want, so then we can see who’s assigned and then what’s not assigned. So there’s a lot of different ways to kind of see this. And the way that I would use the next actions is I would use that as a place for like one off projects, one off tasks that you’re doing. If it’s a send an email to this person or whatever.
And the waiting on delegated, that’s for me, I would use that as how to track what I’ve delegated to someone what I’m waiting on that kind of thing. And again, what I mentioned about as you if you have a bigger group of people that work with you on your team, you may want to make each of these a folder and then they get a list. So you know with next actions, it might be next actions for you and then for your team members. And then you can start to put tasks there. And then you would be able to get if you with this view that we just set up then you’d be able to see what everyone has going on. And you can quickly switch between Okay, I want to see maybe you want to have it organized by tags or like I said due date then you can see that here.
Alright, so now the tickler file is items that excuse me, that’ll be done in the future, and they may or may not have a due date. And again, I would put as much detail in as possible. And then part of your review, which we’ll go over for the weekly review is to go over the tickler file to see if there’s Anything that needs to be moved into next actions, or maybe it goes to scheduled, or maybe a new project needs to have new project lists needs to be created. But this is sort of like your dumping place for anything that you have coming up. And then the way you organize it as by context, so then that way you can, you know, prioritize, and especially the things that don’t have due dates, when it does come time for a due date to be added, your weekly review will set you up for that.
And then your reference area, these are just references. And again, there’s a description over here. This is like reference material, anything connected to a specific task or project, but I’m sorry, that isn’t connected to a specific task or project. But are just things that you want to take note of, maybe it’s a place where you can do some brain dumps, things like that. The difference I think, between reference and tickler file, or is how I would do it is if the tickler file is like, you know, it’s coming up, but it’s not something you’re taking action on right now. And reference, I would use it as you know, notes. Maybe you’re reaching out to someone, but you know, there it’s later on or notes that you might need for a call that’s coming up in a couple months or something like that.
But I would put that here, this could be a good place for like a brain dump. And then, you know, refer back to it as you’re starting to put things into action. And then you have your weekly review. And I really liked how they set this up. So you can read through this. Basically what they did here is they created one task. And you can see that they’ve grouped it by stage, and they’re using the stage custom field here that they have set up. And so you have the different options of how you want to organize this. So maybe you need to get clear on something, you know, get current get current as far as like moving things around updating due dates, get creative, maybe you need to brainstorm it, a certain task or whatever that would go here.
And so what they did is, this is the weekly review. So review waiting, waiting for list, get current meaning check in with people, are they done? Is it overdue, whatever, review some day maybe list. So that might be your tickler file. And then you want to review your upcoming calendar, you want to review previous calendar dates, any relevant checklists, maybe there’s projects that are starting and you need to add action items or checklist to them. So then this would recur each they have it set to recur each week. And so you can set maybe it’s a Monday that you do this, or you know, a Thursday, whatever, you decide what day you want it to recur, and then our occur weekly, and then this will set you up to set you know, go through your inbox, empty your head, are there any things that you need to just dump out into maybe the tickler file or reference file.
And then collecting loose papers and materials, this just would be your weekly review of your business of any tasks that you have. And then because so this is the recurring task, but then they have it also broken down by the stage. So you can see, these are the same as the so you can see that here. So that would be your weekly review. And then it’s broken down by the different stage of what needs to happen for these different pieces of reviews of your business. And so like I said, I think this is a really great setup. I think that as you have a larger team, it’s going to be really important to break these out potentially into larger into folders versus into just lists. So like your next action. So you might have a folder called next actions.
And then inside of there, it’s next actions for each of your team members, and then they can add their next actions or whatever and then they would follow the same process over here. And yeah, so I really think this is a great place to start if you’re trying to get organized. And I think the most important thing is staying consistent, adding details to things so when you have something in a, in a project management tool like this, it is best to put all the resources you need all the directions, the checklist items, anything you need in order to take action.
So that way, it’s more efficient if you or someone else needs to go find the Google folder or find the template to build off of, or, you know, needs to find any other information that those are, that’s time and hours that accumulate over, you know, over the course of a week or two weeks, or whatever, that take up time from the person actually taking action. So like when I write my to do list, it might be three items, but I’m going to write out the different steps or things that I need in order, you know, to get started on it, and that helps me to take action a lot faster.
So I hope this was helpful. If you have any questions, you know, put them in the comments. If you’re looking for a way to customize this, this is a great place to start. But if you’re looking for help to customize this, there’s a link to book a free consultation to see if I’m able to help you out. And make sure you subscribe to check out my future videos and my past videos where I’ve reviewed some of the other templates that clique up provides. I’m going to continue this series where I review and talk about the different templates that they provide for free. So again, my name is Amalie, I am with systematic excellence consulting. Thank you so much for watching.
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