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Not many of us can say we were using email back in 1983.

That’s the year I was born, so I definitely wasn’t.

But can you imagine seeing the evolution of email, the internet, smart phones, etc. if you’d been a part of it from the beginning?

Today’s guest on The School of Greatness has done just that.

David Allen is a master (I call him Mr. Miyagi) of productivity, and not just because he’s been using email for that long.

In fact, David admits that he is lazy and as easily distracted as the rest of us.

But he hasn’t let that stop him from developing one of the most popular and successful productivity methods out there: Getting Things Done.

He wrote his landmark book on the topic 15 years ago, but he is re-releasing an updated edition this year to include everything he has learned since.

I got to interview him about several topics, but I was especially interested in what he said about the importance of letting yourself daydream in between focused periods of work. Which is something I already do. 🙂

David opens up the vault of his mind in this episode and shares some powerful strategies and ideas about how to manage your email effectively, how to consciously handle unplanned urgent tasks, and how to apply order to chaos.

I am very confident you will love Episode 145 as much as I did as David Allen teaches us how to get things done!

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The School of Greatness Podcast

David Allen on The School of Greatness

“Decide outcomes and actions when things show up instead of when they blow up.”

Some questions I ask:

  • Why did you decide to update and re-release your classic book?
  • Do you think the internet has become the biggest challenge for anyone to get things done?
  • How do you focus and make a vision for your day instead of just reacting to all the messages you get?
  • What is the effect of not having zero unread emails?
  • How long does it really take to break or build a habit?

In This Episode, You Will Learn:

  • Why it’s increasingly important to find ways to keep your head clear and stay productive
  • The addictions that constant updates via smartphones are causing
  • The myth of multi-tasking (it doesn’t work when trying to be productive)
  • The 2 Minute Rule – any email you can answer in 2 minutes or less, you should reply to right away
  • How to focus on only what you are doing instead of being distracted by all your other to-dos

“You can only feel good about what you’re not doing when you know what you’re not doing.”

  • The importance of day dreaming after doing something productive
  • Why you need to have a standing catch-up date with all your projects once per week
  • How to have a “mind like water” and how that helps you react properly to situations
  • The difference between having direction and having discipline
  • What job he learned the most from (managing a Texaco service station in LA in the 70s)
  • The 5 Steps to Apply Order to Chaos
    1- Capture what isn’t on cruise control – write it down to get it out of your head
    2- Clarify what that means to you – do you need to do something with it?
    3- Organize the results of that thinking
    4- Reflect
    5- Engage
  • His top productivity tips for entrepreneurs
  • Plus much more…

“Getting organized means matching where something is to what it means to you.”

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  • Music Credit: RAWD by KUNA (GAWTBASS Remix)

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Did you enjoy the podcast?

I sure did. I LOVE hearing experts talk about simple ways we can tweak our habits to supercharge our productivity. Which of David’s tips are you going to use first?

 “I can resist anything but temptation.”

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