Getting Things Done

Getting Things Done

The Art of Stress-free Productivity

Audiobook CD - 2008
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Allen teaches you how to keep a clear head, relax and organize your thoughts while implementing the methods that he has introduced at organizations like Microsoft, Lockheed and the U.S. Department of Justice.
Publisher: Prince Frederick, MD : Recorded Books, p2008
ISBN: 9781436137102
1436137101
Branch Call Number: COM 646.7 A425g
Characteristics: 7 sound discs (7 hr., 15 min.) : digital ; 4 3/4 in

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Fionaenzo
Aug 29, 2013

This guy spends wayyyy too much time describing the problem. We all know what the problem is.

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danielestes
Mar 16, 2012

Getting Things Done by David Allen is perhaps the most left-brained book I've ever read. List making and to-do tracking doesn't exactly make for a thrilling read. And yet, this is an important and forever practical book IF you put into practice the core of what Allen is saying. I'm a daily list maker and I live by my calendar. I never read a book on personal organization though I've invested much of my adult life in it.

Here are the most important points of the book, in my opinion: (1) Get all your to-do's (All. Of. Them.) out of your head and write them down. This will free your mind from having to think about them incessantly. (2) Give all of your immediate to-do's a next action. (For example, "get a dental check-up" should instead be "call and make a dental appointment.") If you can't do the next action at any given time, then transfer it to a separate list to be reviewed sometime later. (3) Don't worry about the what tools to use to organize your life. Start simple with a paper, pen and perhaps a folder and grow from there. Most complex organizational tools are probably too specifically customized for what you need anyway. And (4), every single one of your to-do's is an arranged agreement with yourself. If you put it off or forget about it, you feel the guilt in your mind consciously or not. Having them written down helps your meet your own commitments as well as saying no to commitments you now know you can't keep.

There's many more steps to keeping your personal organization optimized than the above points (for example, defining separate lists such as the "tickler" and the "someday/maybe"), but those I feel are the most crucial. Doing boring stuff like what Getting Things Done advocates would seem soul-sucking to a more right-brained type, but I firmly believe creativity is at its best when it is organized.

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