As you probably know, GTD stands for Getting Things Done. It is a popular productivity methodology created by David Allen. We are often asked how Free to Focus™ differs from it.
First, GTD does work for some people. No question about it. However, in a survey we conducted last year of people who had read the book and attempted to implement it, only 25% felt the system worked for them.
When we asked them why, they typically provided one or more of the following three reasons: First, GTD doesn’t provide a mechanism for filtering your lists. If you think of a task, you automatically put it on a list. Before long, you end up with scores of lists and hundreds of tasks. Second, they spent way too much time managing the system. Rather than actually getting things done, they constantly reviewed their lists and tried to figure out what to do next. Because this can be so overwhelming, they ended up careening from one urgent item to the next. They also reported spending an excessive amount of time searching for the perfect software tool to help them get things done.
We still contend that there is nothing wrong with GTD per se; it’s just missing some critical elements that Free to Focus™ provides:
- The Freedom Compass™ provides the missing filter. You don't have to ingest everything into your system. Tasks outside of your Desire Zone should be automatically challenged.
- The Cut framework—Elimination, Automation, and Delegation—provides a process for dramatically reducing the number of tasks you have to manage. No one operates 100% in their Desire Zone, but the more you can, the fewer tasks you have to manage.
- The Big 3 makes for a straightforward system that is easy to manage and keeps you focused throughout the day. As a result, you don’t just get more done. You get the right things done.