Looking For The Perfect Productivity? Stop Putting Out Fires

Published on October 13, 2014 by Francisco Sáez

Are you being productive or spending the day putting out fires?

continuous improvement

“Prevention is better than cure.” ~ Popular saying

Of all the activities you do, which one do you consider the most important? Solving problems? Fixing errors? Taking new projects?

Unfortunately, we spend too much time solving problems and fixing errors that have been generated by some things that we haven’t done too well. And this means that we cannot have the necessary time to face new and interesting challenges… and that our productivity sucks.

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How To Improve Your Attention Span

Published on October 06, 2014 by Francisco Sáez

You will only master your personal productivity when you are able to pay attention to everything in due time, without being distracted by other options.

attention span

It is a reality that nowadays, in an unconscious but relentless way, the only thing we do is to train our brain to reduce its attention span. Our environment has become a cacophony full of distractions and it is really hard to ignore all the noise for a long time.

The good news is that if we can train our brain to shorten its attention span, we are also able to train it to the contrary, that is, to have more and better attention skills. The difference, of course, is that this second form of training requires significant personal effort, as it goes against what the environment around us imposes.

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The Stop-Doing List

Published on September 29, 2014 by Francisco Sáez

You can have anything you want, but you can't have everything at the same time.

stop doing list

“To get what you want, stop doing what isn’t working.” ~ Earl Warren

Definitely one of the most important changes that have occurred in my life these past few years is having become really aware of how important it is to know when to say no. This is a keystone habit that can trigger the development of other habits and cause major changes in your life. It has helped me to become not just more efficient and productive in what I do, but also to do more of the things I enjoy and less of the things I don’t.

In any person’s life, sooner than later, there comes a time when 100% of our time is always filled. If your time is all occupied, how can you grow? Obviously, in order to let new things into your life, you must first make room. And saying no means so. It means making room to have new experiences that allow you to grow, improve and be happier.

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FacileThings: Utilities And Enhancements

Published on September 25, 2014 by Francisco Sáez

We have added a new Utilities section and made some improvements.

Yesterday we added a new Utilities section within the Account option, in which we will incorporate little tools to facilitate your work and organization with FacileThings.

Right now you can already find a couple of tools to help you better manage your tags:

  • Renaming a tag allows you to change the text of any tag in all the actions where that tag appears. Sometimes we choose a bad name for a tag, or we create more than one for the same concept because we do not remember which one we used the first time. This utility allows you to use better names you could not change for historical reasons and also to merge two or more tags that actually have the same meaning for you.

rename a tag

  • Deleting a tag allows you to remove a tag from all the items where it is at the moment. Although the tag disappears, the text of the tag stays—without the # symbol. Be careful, because this operation cannot be undone.
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Why You Should Always Carry a Notebook

Published on September 22, 2014 by Francisco Sáez

You might have not thought of the handwritten note habit as a productivity hack. Think again, please.

notebook

Technology is everywhere; in your office, in your home, in your handbag, in your pocket and probably very soon, on your wrist or your glasses. Since today technology is available at all times, there are more traditional ways of doing things that are getting lost. And that is good on some occasions and it is not so good in others.

Technology is allowing companies and households to get organized paperless or at least, with great reduction of paper, which in turn allows you to share information more easily, and save costs and space, resulting in improved environmental impact. That’s great. Who needs to be sent an invoice by mail when you can check it online and use it digitally in PDF format?

In addition, paperless means better organization, and better organization leads to greater productivity. In many cases, capturing the information directly into a digital system cuts out redundant work, reduces the margin for error and allows for the associated work-flow to get started immediately.

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Your Calendar Is Not a To-Do List

Published on September 15, 2014 by Francisco Sáez

Using the calendar as a task manager is a common mistake. Here are some compelling reasons not to do it.

A while ago, I argued on this blog that using email as if it was a to-do list is, from my point of view, a very unproductive organizational approach. Each tool is designed for a type of use, and using email as a system of personal organization is like using a fork to hunt whales.

Using a Calendar as a to-do list is another approach, as bad as the previous one, which is also a legacy left us by the corporate world. It is not rare at all to see that still today there is the one who works with calendars like this one, full of tasks, without practically any free space:

full calendar

Here are a few reasons why working this way is not only unproductive, but also very overwhelming:

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To What Are You Giving Your Attention?

Published on September 08, 2014 by Francisco Sáez

Keeping your focus on the task you are performing is essential to cross it off in your to-do list.

attention

“If you don’t pay attention to what has your attention, it will take more of your attention than it deserves.” ~ David Allen

There are two reasons why you have all those things in your head. Some worrying and bothering you, and others getting you excited or amused, but all taking up space in your life. Or you have decided to consciously think about them, or things are just stealing your attention, without asking. In any case, the first step to good self-management, is to try to put all those things in place.

Surely, most of the things that are unconsciously capturing your attention, form also part of the priorities defined by your higher levels of perspective (which is why they are there), but you will need a bigger effort to identify them correctly and remove them from your head.

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Productive blogs

  • 43 Folders ~ Merlin Mann

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  • GTD Times ~ GTD Times Team

    The hub for all things GTD.

  • Lifehacker GTD ~ Lifehacker Team

    Tips and downloads for Getting Things Done.