“You can do anything – but not everything.” – David Allen
Stress hinders success and keeps you from maintaining a productive life. The stress not only effects you, it also effects how you behave and can impact the relationships with your team. A major factor in the stress we all feel on a daily basis has a lot to do with the amount of clutter in your mind.
When you’re given multiple responsibilities it can be easy for your mind to become cluttered. Whether it’s about things that are going on in your personal life, or the numerous task that need to be done in the office, you’re almost always thinking about multiple projects at once. Having too many things on your mind can feel overwhelming and create stress.
“If you don’t pay appropriate attention to what has your attention, it will take more of your attention than it deserves.”– David Allen
Getting things done is not about getting things done. Instead – in order to get things done properly, and with the least amount of stress, you need to focus on being appropriately engaged with each task. Instead of letting your mind subconsciously think about other responsibilities or ideas, you must learn to put your entire self into the task at hand. Whether it’s being appropriately engaged with writing an email, giving a speech, listening to what someone is saying, or even just giving your cat some attention. No matter the chore you should be putting all of your attention into it.
“Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them.” – David Allen
Being creative requires room to think, to be innovative, and to be a leader. If you have dozens of thoughts in your subconscious they will be taking up valuable room in your head. If you can empty your mind you will have room to move and create.
David Allen states that in business and life flexibility trumps perfection. You must able to shift your focus from one task to the next without taking the previous task with you. However, doing so is nearly impossible without a tool to help you keep track of the things your mind is trying to remember.
Allen discusses a simple process to banish these excess thoughts from your head so as to gain control and perspective in your daily life. He believes that dumping tasks from your overstimulated brain into an external system is key to clearing your mind so that it can become more fluid and ready to form to the task at hand.