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When There’s No Time to Read Books

When There’s No Time to Read Books

Every book is an entire world, waiting to be explored.

My father had a large library. Many of the books were inherited from a friend. That friend had told him that when he was younger, he would worry:

“I rarely have the time to read these. When I find the time, will I be too old to see the words?”

The answer became “yes”. He did grow too old to read them and so gifted them to my father.

Funny enough, my father said the same thing. And once again, it came true.

But for him, it wasn’t for the lack of reading. He’d always had a book in hand and a pen to mark it up with and act as a bookmark. He lamented reading slowly, but I knew he read thoroughly, deeply exercising his mind as he would his body when jogging.

Books Unread

Now, I have many books.

But I’m not reading them at the pace that I’d like. Well, to be honest, they’ve mainly been sitting there.

I brought a book on vacation and began to get into it. I came back from vacation without having finished it, thinking, “Surely, I’ll continue”.

So, I sat it next to my bed, where “Of course, it will remind me.”

And, of course, it sat next to my bed, barely touched.

Two months later, I took another trip, being sure to bring the book along. I got back into it, right where I left off. And once again, I have returned.

This time, though, I’m making a change. Rather than hope the book itself would act as a reminder, I’m adding it to what I’ve come to call my “Honor Guide”.

An Honor Guide

An Honor Guide is much like many other lists, but the structure is unique. It holds 1-3 spaces for the things that I am currently active with, engaging in daily visits at my pace. There is another small area for things that await activation. There is a third area for things I have already well incorporated into my days, no longer taking deep thought to continue, but can still do with a reminder.

It’s a simple structure, but one that has carried me forward for many years now.

The structure affords a direct meeting place for Past, Present, and Future. There, I practice acknowledging what I wish to add into my life and what I would need to set aside to do so. Things that can wait, can wait. Things that cannot, come forward.

Decisions, big or small, can be difficult. But having a structure to support your decisions, so that it is no longer forced, strained, so that you don’t have to hold onto them in some chronic tension, can make all the difference.

– Kourosh

PS If you are interested in learning more about the Honor Guide, you can read its beginnings in the Navigation section (p565) of Creating Flow with OmniFocus and its latest version in Module 7 of the Waves of Focus.

What is Productivity?

Productivity is many things. For some, it is about doing a lot in a little time.
But, truly, productivity is so much more. It is about:

  • Setting yourself up for success.
  • Being focused where you want to be.
  • Doing things that you find meaningful.
  • Being creative, sometimes even in harsh environments.
  • Forging your own paths.
  • Finding your voice and delivering it well.
  • Knowing and actively deciding on your obligations.
  • Knowing where and how to say “no”.
  • Avoiding procrastination.

Too often, many of us fall into just going along with and fighting whatever the world throws at us. “Go with the flow!”, we say. Meanwhile, we might think, “I’d like to do that one thing. Maybe one day I will.” The days go by. The goal never arrives, and then we wonder why or blame circumstance.

But when we learn to take charge of our lives and the world
around us, we start living life with intention.

“I should do that,” becomes “This is how I start”. Deliberately forging a path to our goals and dreams, we figure out what we want in life and then start taking steps there.

Of course, striking out may seem scary. It takes courage to live life with purpose and on purpose. Roadblocks and worries, fears and concerns show up everywhere.

This is my passion. I want to help you to find that sense of your own unique play to meet the world so that you can:

  • Create a life that is yours.
  • Find and follow an inner guide in a way that works for you and those you care for.
  • Decide on your obligations and meet them while building the world you want.

Productivity Journal

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These products use or are based on Getting Things Done® or GTD® Principles. They are not affiliated with, approved or endorsed by David Allen or the David Allen Company, which is the creator of the Getting Things Done® system for personal productivity. GTD® and Getting Things Done® are registered trademarks of the David Allen Company For more information on the David Allen Company’s products the user may visit their website at