Friday, November 11, 2011

Book Review: Getting Things Done

In Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity, David Allen encourages readers to get to a place of "mind-like-water" in their connection to productivity. He believes that the secret to being more productive lies in assessing all that is in your psyche to do and take care of and assigning it an action to get you calmly on the road to completion of these tasks or ideas.

I will have to say that I was hopeful that the book would teach me to make better use of my time at home and end the day with more accomplished, but I was also skeptical that the lessons, geared towards professionals and business-people, would be able to be fleshed out in my home environment. Bryce kept asking me why I was listening to the book. I think he found it tedious. At times, I did, too, but I stuck with it.

I think the final section benefited me the most because it enabled me to see myself in many of the characteristics he listed of creative individuals who are often the worst procrastinators. Frankly, the whole book was like getting inside of the mind of my husband, who lives under the dictates of lists and files and is highly organized. I am a disorganized, creative sort and frankly, I fit the author's profile perfectly and recognized many of the reasons he suggested for why intelligent individuals fight this structure most vehemently.

The book clearly taught me that when I don't take care of things which need to be handled or completed, it lingers in my brain as unfinished business and keeps me from being calm and fulfilled. My own procrastination shoots myself in the foot, because it keeps those numerous plates still spinning, instead of finishing their rotation and moving them off the sphere of consciousness.

I doubt I'll be able to incorporate all the lessons (and I did find myself wishing I had read the book instead of listening on CD, since it came with bonus organizational charts and explanations) from the book. I won't become a type A person just because I listened to someone who champions the behaviors of the type A individual. To some extent, that is just not me (I cannot imagine going through every inch of my house and psyche to list and gather things that need my attention - I think my brain would go into overload!), but I will try to be more productive. Plus, I will be more thankful for my husband's lists and files mentality. At least one of is highly productive!

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