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  • Paolo Pironi

How Can Startup Leaders Steer The Ship If They're Always Busy?

Updated: Jun 13, 2020

A consultant to top CEOs, David Allen created the world’s most popular productivity system, “Getting Things Done”. 20 years later, his “Art of Stress-Free Productivity” is still largely misunderstood.


Get Things Done, Time Management, Executive Coaching and Consulting for Startups

Our work culture wrongly celebrates ultra-busy people and encourages an always-on attitude. As Allen declared in an interview with Fast Company, “People assume that I am a hard-working, left-brained, results-oriented, OCD, anal-retentive kind of guy. In fact, the reason that I was attracted to this work was that it allowed me to be more creative, more spontaneous, freer. I’m a freedom guy.”


GTD is not a method to do work, it’s a method to free yourself from work!


Busy work gives you tunnel vision, you’re too exhausted to see the bigger picture or to think creatively and make breakthroughs.


To be on top of your game, you have to continually transition across 3 different states:

  • Cruise Control: knocking down familiar tasks down in auto-pilot (peak of productivity as most people intend it)

  • Creativity: the highest energy state where you can invent and innovate

  • Clear Thinking: the a-ha moments occur when you’re relaxing and your mind is roaming free (ever had your best ideas while driving, strolling aimlessly or taking a shower?)


Always being busy or even “productive” as most people intend it is very damaging and ironically, counterproductive.


No, to be on top of your game, you can’t live trapped in Cruise Control. You need to free your time for Creativity and Clear Thinking.


Executive Coaching and Consulting for Startups

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