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This is a seminal book, which has in some ways been superseded by its own children. If you survey the Mac and PC software applications that offer help with time management, by far the most popular system implemented is Getting Things Done, or GTD for short.

GTD has been criticised for being no more than common sense. In a lot of ways this is both untrue, and unfair. More accurately, it's two simple ideas put together, and supported by a collection of useful ideas borrowed (with appropriate acknowledgement) from elsewhere. The two ideas are the idea of 'stuff', and what you do with it (collect, process, organise, review, do), and the idea of using (and relying on) a reliable filing system. It's backed up with other good ideas like brainstoming, mind-mapping, the 50,000 feet perspective, and other notions that you may have encountered in their original contexts, or in programmes like TQM.

GTD is less revolutionary than the 4th generation time-management that Stephen Covey introduced in 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. However, it's more powerful for most of us in the sense that you can implement it easily on a computer or a PDA. David Allen makes the most of the power of easy storage of information. If you're a computer user (and if you're reading this on Amazon, then chances are that you are), then this is by the far the most practical system, whether you use a specialist piece of software like Omnifocus, or just make the most of the built-in functions of Outlook or iCal.

This is the strength, and the weakness of this book: get one of the many software packages, read the help-file, and you may not need to read the book at all.

Just one more thing about Getting Things Done. As the author points out, this is really a book for people on the fast-track to improve their personal organisation. It's not going to make a great gift for someone else who you _think_ should get organised.
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on 5 August 2016
It's a classic book that I read many years ago, but returned to recently when I found I was totally swamped by an insane workload. I listened to the Audible version driving to work, which inspired me for the day and gave me steps to work on. I also bought the printed version as a handy reference to dip into for specific topics or refreshers. Combining the two has genuinely transformed my ability to stay relaxed and on top of my work. I still have too much to do, but I have a very clear radar of what's on my plate, what I want to focus on, and what I want to delegate, discard or defer. Top notch!!

This rewrite of the original is well worth the update - it feels like a realistic and honest assessment of the pressures facing real people. In his anecdotes of working with different clients, I kept thinking 'thank goodness - I thought it was just me who was that hopeless'. No, real life is hard, and the volume of information and tasks is immense. However, it can be managed and the difference that makes to stress and productivity is remarkable. The lessons are great, whether you're a middle-aged manager or troubled teen - life is busy and complex, but good personal systems can work wonders. Overall it was great for morale, and the system really works. It takes a little determination to get sorted, but stick at it as the results are so worth it.
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on 28 October 2016
I'm a massive advocate of the Getting Things Done methodology but the majority of these cards just don't seem relevant. I expected to purchase a boxful of cards which would give me prompts and reminders regarding the system but over half of them are just plain inspirational quotes that you would see on a poster in a accountants office. The book is a lot to take in and I wanted something more helpful in aiding me fine tune the system in bite sized chunks. My rating is for two stars as this represents that I've kept around 40% of the cards. The other 60% are in the bin, never to be looked at again.
I genuinely think that I could do a better job myself in creating the content for these cards.
On the plus side the cards, printing and box are all very good quality.
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on 10 May 2017
I was fired up about reorganising myself, having watched several videos and bought myself a nice new diary. I got this book, as it is very well known and an airport lounge staple. It is far far too long winded and systematised for me - it goes into endless theory and I found that it made a meal of a fairly simple subject - getting things done! For a procrastinator, this book is pretty useless.

A month on from starting my new system of organisation - I'm doing really well. The system that I use is basically just a bunch of reminders that I read every morning - such as, prioritise, plan to do 3 important things today, do the harder tasks in the morning, and so on. Just search the internet and get on with improving your life.
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on 3 April 2017
The book is great and something I implementing in my life.

But, the kindle version is terrible, the hundreds of quotes down the sides of the pages, easy enough to ignore on the paperback, are very much in the way on the smaller kindle screen. They also don't flow over pages, but are sometimes just cut horizontal through a line. This essentially means two columns of text over two pages, which you have to flick back and to a few times to read them both.

If you do get the kindle version, my advice would be just to ignore all of the quotes, don't try and read them, it will drive you nuts
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on 2 May 2017
Far too many fillers and highly wordy book .Tales a long time to come to a point .First 100 pages has no meaning ..There is a dedicated chapter to ela borate notes and filING process which could be summed in 3 lines .
Not worth time and money
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on 6 December 2010
Bought this book because I decided to get organised. I have to say it works. I found the book a little bit of a struggle initially as David Allen does not write as clearly as say Tony Robbins. In the earlier chapters I had to double read certain passages to understand some of his ideas. With hindsight I would recommend you just keep going as the author repeats and reinforces the system as the book progresses. I decided early on to stick with it and finish the book. I must say I am happy that I did as I have installed a system now in the office that works, things get done. I would recommend the book to anyone who wants to have a rethink about their organizational skills and their ability to follow through and get things completed. Read at least half the book before you start to implement any ideas as this will give you a better idea of developing a system that suits you personally. I read one or two reviews that said the book was out of date as it was written before current technological breakthroughs such as the iPhone. Ignore these as this book will still be relevant in twenty years time. The book focusses mainly on getting things done using your brain, the tools you use in that process are up to you.
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on 19 April 2017
Great book, still haven't read it. Must have been about a year so far.
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on 3 July 2016
The book is very helpful and enjouyable to read
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on 17 February 2017
Thank you.
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