Wednesday mornings I’m usually the third person at Barriques on Monroe street. I love my Wednesday mornings. One of the guys is about 70 years old, he usually wears an old tweed sport jacket, he’s on a Mac with headphones, doing some kind of audio work. It fascinates me but I don’t know his story… yet. But today I’m writing about the second guy. He’s younger than the first, probably about 55 with a grey goatee, nice rimless glasses and usually wears a blazer also. I prefer the window seat early in the morning to get this writing done, so I walk the length of the coffee shop and I notice his Mac also (funny how coffee shop people usually are on Mac). But he’s got three or four orange Post-It notes on this keyboard. It strikes me as odd, how someone can pay that much for a computer, have access to great apps, probably has an iPhone also, but he’s keeping important reminders on a Post It note.
Let’s clear the air: I’m not judging, and here’s how I can prove it. I give the guy huge props for doing what works for him. Yes, I think Reminders on Mac would be much better than Post-It Notes. But chances are Post-It Notes are what work best for him. He has a system. It’s a system he trusts. As he opens his notebook and starts to type, there’s the paper stuck to his keyboard, screaming at him to take action on these few items. It’s not how I would do it, but my wife does the same thing. It works for her. Would it work for you?
As I get busier, as projects seem to hold more weight, as more people rely on me personally and professionally, I find myself fine-tuning my systems of productivity. I’m trying to perfect my Getting Things Done methodology, of which one of the principles is to have a trusted system of taking in information and processing it in a timely and efficient manner.
One of my systems is to get some personal writing done Wednesday mornings after I teach my class. With a 5:45am workout under my belt, my mind is clear and primed for creative thinking. Another system is how I track my work log and project notes in Evernote. I know that if I worked on it, it’s in there and I can easily search any date or description and find my material within a couple seconds.
I am not a productivity expert. I probably even sound more organized and thoughtful than I really am. I know many of you have bigger responsibilities and systems than I do. But I think I can add a lot of value talking about these systems and thinking about our thinking. Do you agree?
What system have you put in place that allows your day to be more productive?
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