If ThenI’ve been a productivity junkie for at least a decade now. Am I more productive? Sure!

Am I happy with my productivity levels? …That answer is still a resounding “No”.

David Allen, Mark Forrester, Tim Ferriss, Leo Babauta, Stever Robbins, etc. all have fantastic systems. At this point I gotta admit, I have ample empirical data to make my own and declare the following:

  1. I have very crafty mind that really likes to keep doing what it’s already doing (especially when I’m not paying close attention!)
  2. Any effective changes I’ve ever made are undeniably simple AND uncomfortable

As such, I’m now combining a bunch of the stuff my productivity heroes have said into this dastardly simple ruleset. I hate rules, but given my above observations, that don’t seem to matter none. Rules work to shape default behavior, and when properly designed they decrease stress and increase output. Here’s a few:

IF… THEN… because…
no decent food/sleep/exercise within last 24hrs no complaints spoken/written the problem is internal, not external
stuff unused in last 2 years automatic ejection from current life it has proven itself unneccessary
something breaks fix within 24hrs
OR
eject
stuff that has ceased to function as intended cannot be used as intended
something is important immediately do it
OR
immediately calendar it
OR
immediately add to task list
important things should not get dropped
something is not important don’t start doing it
AND
drop all “should” feelings around it
AND
do not track at all
unimportant things should get dropped
outstanding task mark for automatic drop/delete within 90 days my system attracts clutter otherwise
outstanding debt curtail all non-essential spending
AND
drop all unpaid efforts for others
perpetuating debt through avoidance is stupid
outstanding legal/tax filing no entertainment/leisure activities the cost of any delay/distraction is too high
[your suggestion here] [your suggestion here] [your suggestion here]

Please help me iterate this by suggesting what you think should be added or taken away. I start living these as of the moment I publish this post. I encourage you to call me out if you ever see me falter…because I’d hate that too 😉