Couple of weeks ago I started the next round of attempts to improve my workflow and organize the day better. It had started to take way too much time to stay on top of things and something had had to be done about that. So, I began collecting feeds and read books on personal productivity and management, scanning them on a daily basis for new, more effective approaches and methods.

Today, catching up with collected reading, I stumbled upon an article by Michael Sampson sharing his productivity recipe. In the essay, he describes in details how Clarity, work without Interruptions, and Rested brain help to maintain top RPM of his brain cells during a business day. He gives a rousing speech with lots of examples; highly informative at the same time.

Needless to say, it helped me. I picked up some good advice and, what’s important, now I see that I’m not alone in my troubles with noise, distractions (I’m constantly fighting with) and documents organization. Thanks, Mike, for sharing your experience!

Please take a moment to read the article though as it may turn whole your life upside-down.

Comments from the past

Markus Merz on 09/13/2006

Aleksey, a little OT (here) but you might like it or even know my ‘tip of the day’ already:

GTDGmail is a Firefox extension that integrates the highly effective methodology of “Getting Things Done” into the popular email service Gmail.

I have installed it and it looks absolutely useful IF you organize your mails through the web-interface of Google Mail.

This seems to become esp. useful when using automatic attribution ( when sending something to your own inbox.

Aleksey Gureiev on 09/13/2006

Yeah, I saw it a little while ago and didn’t get how to use it effectively. Plus I am a little affraid of two things:

  • using my mailbox as a note-taker

  • saving my todo lists on the web. Having them on my laptop, I can access them whenever I want not worrying about the connection.

Could you (maybe in the post to your blog?) describe the way you usually use it to let me feel the taste? Just an idea… Of course, I would love to hear from you through any means.

Michael Sampson on 09/14/2006

Aleksey, glad that my piece was of help to you. Thanks for sharing your current situation too. Keep going with an as simple as possible approach.

Kind regards, M.

Markus Merz on 09/14/2006

Re: GTDgmail

I have set up some automatically attached labels. That’s very useful (for me) for incoming press releases and bulk stuff like that.

The advantage is that you can automatically categorize mails and also filter them to project labels. The same for outgoing mails. Sending mails from Thunderbird via Gmail has the nice advantage (over Yahoo i.e.) that outgoing mail is also archived at Gmail.

I will think about an extra article about that on which is my web stuff blog.

It’s pretty complicated to explain context, status, projects and references which can automatically be attached with GTDgmail. I need to think about how to realize the same in my Thunderbird.

Wait and see :-)