Monday, December 03, 2018

Productivity Report: The Productivity Project

In case you didn't know it, I'm a productivity geek.  I love to find little tricks and fixes to help me be more organized and get more done.  Going into an office supply store is more tempting to me than a fabric store and a new yearly planner makes me weak in the knees!  New Year is my favorite time of the year because I get to start everything over again, but my New Year starts this week because today I am returning from my last teaching trip of 2018.  I leave again in February, so I try to make the most of the 6-8 weeks I'll be home by celebrating New Year early.

I just finished reading (listening to) The Productivity Project by Chris Bailey.  I listen to books while quilting, driving, and working around the house, so basically I listen nearly all of my waking hours.  This young man spent a year testing out different factors of productivity (sleep, food, solitude, etc.) to learn what impacted his productivity the most.

Sprinkled throughout the book are titles of other productivity books.  I've read some and plan to read the rest.

Getting Things Done by David Allen
I can, without risk of exaggeration, state that this book Changed.  My.  Life.  I re-read it at least once a year, sometimes more.

Eat That Frog
I read this book once, years ago.  My memory is that it was light on substance and can be summed up in one sentence:  "Do the most important task of the day first"

Getting Results the Agile Way
Haven't read it.  It's now on my list.

Work the System
Haven't read it.  It's now on my list.

I Know How She Does It
Haven't read it.  It's now on my list.

168 Hours
This book was eye-opening for me.  It was the first time I considered that doing everything myself wasn't always the best use of my time.

Willpower Instinct
Haven't read it.  It's now on my list.

Procrastination Equation
Haven't read it.  It's now on my list.

Haven't read it.  It's now on my list.

The Power of Habit
This book made me realize that habits can be good as well as bad.

Haven't read it.  It's now on my list.

How We Got to Now
Watching this 6-part documentary is now scheduled as a series of date nights with my husband.  Because we are a wild and crazy couple.

The Shallows
Haven't read it.  It's now on my list.

The Happiness Advantage
This is a great book and brilliant audiobook by the man who brought me my favorite TED talk... EVER!

Haven't read it.  It's now on my list.

Some of the concepts I noted from this book are:
  • The Rule of Three -- Three goals for the day, three goals for the week, three goals for the year.
  • Unplug from technology frequently
  • Know when you work best (Biological Prime Time)
  • Identify your low-return tasks and shrink, delegate, or eliminate them
  • Time + Attention + Energy = Productivity
The author has additional resources on his website.

While The Productivity Project didn't rock my world, it was a great start to my upcoming Year of Productivity (what I name every new year).

Do you have other favorite productivity books that didn't make this author's list?  One of my weirdest (and best!) reads is Work Clean.  Seriously, your work life is like a kitchen.  Read this book.

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