GTD process commit to it or abandon it.

Stop complaining about your stress and your overwhelm! Look outside—the universe is not stress-out or confused. It’s fine. It’s only the way we are engaged with it that creates our negative reactions. GTD is the process we’ve uncovered that creates appropriate engagement. What you’re dealing with at hand may not be easy or fun, but being in the driver’s seat about it moves that experience to a much more mature and effective level. But If you’re not willing to make this process really work, 100%, don’t tire yourself with the pretenses of half-baked solutions. They just add insult to injury, and quite frankly, may not be worth the energy to continue.

Getting Things Done® Get a Grip on Your Process, or Give It Up

Enough information

As countless studies have shown, you only need a very small amount of information to make an intelligent risk/reward investment decision. So the real paradox is that more information leads to overconfidence, which ironically means more information leads to worse decision-making.

It’s really quite fascinating because what reading lots of news does is makes you more comfortable in your decision-making, but it doesn’t lead to better decision-making. It’s an emotional salve.

Ritholtz: Why I Write – The Big Picture

The trick is to know when you found that sweet spot of enough information.


Write to figure it out

Daniel Boorstein once said ‘I write to figure out what I think’. It’s a surprisingly accurate quote – until you sit down and put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) you have nothing. Not until you have a coherent work with a beginning, middle and end, AND a justifiable premise, AND the ability to defend it to other people’s attacks, you don’t really know what you think. Writing it out is a very, very different process than just having a half formed idea kicking around inside your head.

Ritholtz: Why I Write – The Big Picture

Accomplish more

Few quotes I picked up from

The Art of the Finish: How to Go From Busy to Accomplished

In fact, I would go so far as to say that the act of becoming accomplished is almost entirely unrelated to being productive


If you are productive without harboring this intense desire for completion, you will end up just being busy. [..] You work all day off of your to-do list. Everything is organized. Everything is scheduled. Yet, still, months pass with no important projects getting accomplished.


With traditional GTD-style methodology, during each day, you look at your current context and at your next action lists and choose what to do next. It’s easy, in this case, to fall into a infinite task loop where you are consistently accomplishing little actions from your next action lists but making little progress toward completing the big projects.


Each morning, look at your project page and ask: “What’s the most progress I can make toward completing this list today?” Your biggest goal should be to complete projects. If you see a way to do it (even if it requires a big push, perhaps working late) go for it. If you can’t finish one, think of the single thing you could do that would get you closest to this goal over the next few days. Harbor an obsession for killing this list!

Why blog

I share below quote only to realise it’s been a month since my last entry.

“Your podcast will reach more people than your book will. A blog post will reach more people than a podcast.”

“Everyone should write a blog, every day, even if no one reads it. There’s countless reasons why it’s a good idea and I can’t think of one reason it’s a bad idea.”

 Seth Godin Explains Why You Should Blog Daily

Relationships without a context

Arguably Facebook is making it too easy for us to be superficially sociable, at the expense of deeper social cultural context. That’s hard to prove, but it’s a framework for interpreting the growing pile of circumstantial evidence that indeed something is wrong with Facebook.


Frankly, I don’t see what we have to lose from spending less time on Facebook: Research indicates that social media use is often a kind of addiction. It doesn’t make most people happier, but causes them to feel alienated.

Facebook’s Harm Is Taking Life Out of Context


Habits and compounding

Get 5% Better: The Compounding of Consistent Incremental Progress

Warren Buffett likes to say that The chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken. Billion-dollar industries have been built on convincing you that it’s easy to make big changes or to get a lot wiser and better. But it honestly isn’t. It’s hard work.

I’ve been experiencing the effects of habits, consistency and compounding frist hand. For the past 4 months I consistently did 50 push-ups a day almost every day. Afther those four months three things have changed:

  • I no longer need to remember to do 50  push-ups.
  • I can see the effects of the training by the size of my arms
  • I can easily do over 25 push-ups in one go and I regularly hit 60 or more pushups.

Your next weekly review

Here are a few things you should include in your weekly review:

Process and organize – anything you’ve collected but haven’t handled yet.

Review your active tasks – are there any to add, delegate, defer, or delete?

Review your active projects – are there any to add, delegate, defer, or delete?

Review your calendar – are there any meetings to add, delegate, defer, or delete?

Someday/Maybe – anything to add or promote to an active project?

Reference Files – anything you need soon? Anything to add or update?

Goals – are you moving in the right direction? Are you making progress? Are any changes necessary?

Getting Things Done – David Allen – Josh Kaufman

Productivity is overrated

Productivity is important for being successful. But its role in this endeavor is often blown out of proportion. Some of the most accomplished people I know are incredibly disorganized. They work at the last minute. They stay up all night. They constantly scramble to find what they’re looking for. But they still get it done. Other accomplished people are incredibly organized. What gives? The truths underlying this reality:
Being productive does not make you accomplished. It does, however, make being accomplished less stressful.


The key to really getting ahead has nothing to do with productivity. From my experience with successful young people (and, as I writer, I have quite a bit of exposure to this crowd) what you need, put simply, is a drive to keep working, with a laser-like intensity, on something even after you’ve lost immediate interest. Tenacity. A grating thirst to get it done. These are the precursors of accomplishment.

Dangerous Ideas: Productivity is Overrated – Study Hacks – Cal Newport

I think these observations are very true. I’ve been following the How I work series on Lifehacker and one of my own observations is that it’s rare for any one to use any elaborated productivity systems. The most popular to-do systems are simple pen and paper, a document on a computer or a default reminders/notes app.

In efffect a productivity system might help you a bit but it’s not critical to delivering results and achieving success.

When success is a failure

From an interview with Ryan Holiday:

see one of the failures in myself and in other people like me is where you do something wrong–you do it the wrong way or you do it for the wrong reasons–but if you don’t experience the failure, it doesn’t change the fact that it was the wrong thing to do. You’re really just deferring that failure and maybe increasing its magnitude.

Interview: How Ryan Holiday Leverages Failures to Catapult His Success

It’s a great observation and a reminder that things are rarely just black and white.
It’s not hard to find examples of this in play. As an example take extreme career success that’s paid with a broken family life. Is it a success or failure?

Looking at the outcomes of choices and decisions from multiple perspective is probably the best way to avoid norrow thinking and chasing something that isn’t a true success.

Do you fix weaknesses or develop your strenghts

I’ve been pondering this question for quite a while:

Andy Rachleff told me that one of his best business lessons is that you learn far more from success than from failure, and that you should use success as a compass. Drive hard in the direction of what works rather than trying to shore up weaknesses. If something is working, more of that thing, or a better version is likely to work too. A better version of a failure is likely still going to fail.

Lessons Learned After Almost a Year

On changing your mind, spending and status quo

A: I make no excuses or apologies for changing my mind. The world around me changes, for one thing, but also I am continuously learning. I have never finished my education and probably never will….

spending beyond income means borrowing, and all of economic history proves that too much borrowing is the core of economic disasters and chaos.

But there is a tendency — as I’ve suggested in answering all your questions — for people to expect the status quo either to last indefinitely or to provide advance signals for shifting strategies. The world does not work like that. Surprise and shock are endemic to the system, and people should always arrange their affairs to that they will survive such events. They will end up richer that way than [by] focusing all the time on getting rich.

A (Long) Chat with Peter L. Bernstein

What to teach your kids

I would teach them Pascal’s Law: the consequences of decisions and choices should dominate the probabilities of outcomes. And I would also teach them about Leibniz’s warning that models work, but only for the most part. I would remind them of what the man who trained me in investing taught me: Risk-taking is an inevitable ingredient in investing, and in life, but never take a risk you do not have to take.

A long chat with Peter I Bernstein