GTD: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity

David Allen wrote the book Getting Things Done. The Art of Stress-Free Productivity in 2001 and it quickly became the handbook of personal productivity best practices par excellence.

The book begins with a very promising paragraph:

IT’S POSSIBLE FOR a person to have an overwhelming number of things to do and still function productively with a clear head and a positive sense of relaxed control. That’s a great way to live and work, at elevated levels of effectiveness and efficiency. It’s also the best way to be fully present with whatever you’re doing, appropriately engaged in the moment. It’s when time disappears, and your attention is completely at your command. What you’re doing is exactly what you ought to be doing, given the whole spectrum of your commitments and interests. You’re fully available. You’re “on’’.

And the truth is that the system worked, probably not for everyone, but for those who decided to really immerse themselves in it. The system, like everything worthwhile, has a certain learning curve, and it takes time and effort to build certain habits.

As the method was used and verified by thousands of people around the world, the book gained popularity and became a best-seller. It was translated into more than 40 languages and sold millions of copies.

At the same time, many personal management applications partially included some of the techniques developed in the book to announce that their apps were GTD-compatible, since this was the fashionable term in the field of personal productivity.

The years have passed and probably the hype has diminished, but the truth is that in all this time no new manual of good productive practices has appeared that has overshadowed the GTD method, which is still as valid as the first day.

There are still millions of people implementing the method on a daily basis and there are still lots of apps implementing, almost all of them only partially, some of the techniques that make up the method.

This is quite logical. After all, GTD is based on a series of behaviors that are common sense and, moreover, are supported by science. Fundamentally, the GTD method is based on these three principles:

  1. Capture all the things that might be useful or that you might need to do at some point, in a logical and trusted system, out of your head.

Anyone can do it, right?

Originally published at



The Ultimate Solution to Get Things Done.

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