On Creating Flow

I loved it. I loved how it took GTD further by providing intelligent examples of advanced uses and unleashing the whole power of the software. Also liked that it can be read as a sort of user manual, taking things slowly and gradually. I loved many ideas such as File & Flow and Land & Sea, which have been real sanity savers for me.

… it’s hands down the most useful productivity book I’ve ever read after GTD. I seriously think that with both, one is fully set to manage his or her life.

…CFwOF est le seul autre livre, à part Getting Things Done (rien que ça) qui a eu un tel impact sur ma façon de m’organiser pour arriver à jongler avec toutes mes casquettes.

– Creating Flow with OmniFocus : le seul autre manuel de productivité nécessaire

Lionel Davoust


… What Kourosh has been able to do with this publication, is nothing short of stunning. …

… you really can be at ANY skill level to read through this book. …

… From contexts to projects, perspectives to meta-tasks, I would challenge anyone not to be able to pick up any new tips and tricks from this book …

… I always refer to Getting Things Done as my productivity bible and I go back to it regularly to ensure that I still follow the sage advice given within. Well, I’ve now got a second book that deserves to sit alongside GTD and I really cannot give it any higher praise than that.

Lee Garrett, Productivityist

Hi Kourosh,

First, I’m a fan. Finding Flow has been extremely practical, helpful, and inspiring. And I found your thought­ structure in Workflow Mastery helped me to better organize my own thoughts, processes, and teaching.

My name is Allen Mathews. I have an online classical guitar program and blog. Each Tuesday I choose a quote and add my thoughts or impressions to it. Today, I published one of yours from Workflow Mastery.

You can read it here if you like: https://classicalguitarshed.com/tq-kourosh-dini-creativity/

I wrote it last month while flying home to Oregon after two months in Europe. In part, I have you to thank for being able to take that time and make that trip. Since finding your work, I’ve become better organized, more peaceful and harmonious in my work, and more consistent in my output. This has led to a better life in almost every way I can think of. And my flow continues to improve and refine, leading to more success and enjoyment. I’m grateful you’ve taken the time to write and share your thoughts and experience. And I’m inspired that you give such quality attention to the different areas of your life.

Motivated by your example, I’m now taking stained glass lessons, and am more engaged with my home­life and relationships. Thank you!

Have a wonderful day,


Allen Matthews

Classical Guitar Shed

This is, by far, my favorite book on using OmniFocus.

David Sparks


Highly recommended, even for advanced users.

Cesare Tagliaferri, Osomac

I wish to express my sincerest appreciation for your body of work into helping others maximize productivity. Truly, sir, you have written two books that I would sincerely encourage anyone I know, particularly our fellow mac users, to buy and utilize to their fullest.

Burke, reader

Seriously, go buy that book.  It is unbelievably great.  If you’re an OmniFocus person, … if you’re someone who’s sitting there going, “why did I spend $80 bucks on this?” Well believe me, you will get way more than $80 worth of value out of this book.

… He really basically shows you how to turn this into a lightweight CRM for your life.  It’s really well done.

Merlin Mann, Mac Power Users Podcast

A fantastic e-book about OmniFocus that I really can recommend.

It’s the best explanation/exegesis/how-to book on OmniFocus I’ve ever seen. Like, it really covers why OmniFocus is made the way it is, but it’s also like so good at incorporating it with best practices of productivity and getting things done in particular. It really is about setting up a trusted system and then getting to work.

If you’re one of those folks who’ve dropped the dough on OmniFocus and now you’re confused about to do with it, please check this book out. It’s really, really good.

Merlin Mann, 5by5

I was a little reluctant to buy it at first; with so much information and advice about using OF on the web I wasn’t sure that the book would add value. I am not an OF newbie and have been practicing GTD for several years, so I was unsure whether this would be more of the same information.

I was wrong, I’m only 75% through and already the book has taken my Omnifocus use and GTD practice to a new level. I would recommend it as essential reading for any OF user.

Steve, reader

An amazing guide to how to use OmniFocus. Perfect for after you have read David Allen’s ‘Getting Things Done’ and would like to apply those methods in a sound way. 

This book introduces you to the application, and slowly builds up your abilities until you feel comfortable and ready to ‘create flow’. Through use of some very clever perspectives, the author imbues the reader with master level skills and relates it all to everyday life. His background as a psychiatrist really proves useful in how he relates GTD to the mind. 

An absolute must read if you want to, or do use OmniFocus.

Karl Kemp-O-Brien

Dear Kourosh,

I’ve used OF for years and hesitated for some while before buying your book but now I wish I had bought it when you published it. It is the most straightforward, easy and simple to understand system around OF I’ve read but that simplicity belies its depth. You make everything so clear and measured that it is a bit like a Trojan horse in that suddenly you realize that this clearly constructed system is being created almost without trying that hard. It’s given me so much to think about and what I’ve implemented so far has improved my whole use of OF and GTD.

But it goes much further than that. The book is not just a how-to guide, but looks at the psychology of productivity and what prevents and what enhances it. It is a book of insight and that is what raises it to a level I’ve rarely come across anywhere else. Brilliant.


“I’ve been consistently building and tweaking my system for a couple years. I’m the only one around me who *uses* a GTD framework combined with OmniFocus, and when I first realized what a system could do my mind was just totally blown. I still think about it every day… the magic of a system… it’s like the biggest hack of all time and yet no one seems to want to take advantage of it…  to really build a machine founded on these powerful ideas.

“That’s been my experience anyway, and I understand the hesitance… because it’s freakin hard. Anyway, the whole reason I’m writing is because I’m absolutely loving your book on Creating Flow with OF.. seriously man. You’re speeding up my learning 10x… I had to take a moment out of reading it to drop you a line…” 

Nathan Holiday


“I’m a student but I can really recommend the book ”Creating Flow with OmniFocus” by @kouroshdini I’ve been using @OmniFocus for 6 years but this book really helped me use it more efficiently and improved my workflow a ton!”



Just wanted to say how much I value the deep thought that you put into Creating Flow with OmniFocus 2nd Edition. I purchased and read your 1st Edition but later came across your concept of Land & Sea which pointed me to 2nd Ed. I was skeptical if it was worth paying so much money for a book I already own (even with the upgrade pricing) but it is well worth the price. I wanted to say how much I value the fact you didn’t just churn something out to make a quick buck – it is obvious you thought long and hard about the updates. Thank you.


Hi Kourosh

I just finished Creating Flow with OmniFocus and I just wanted to let you know that even though I’ve been using OmniFocus daily for the past two years, the book had me looking at it in a completely different way (as well as my workflow in general). I expect to be referring to it for years to come. Thanks for writing it!

– Alex

Alex, Reader

Big fan since volume 2. Your teachings on OmniFocus have actually changed my life.

Jon Mitchell


Absolutely brilliant book. Thank you for writing it.

Maciej, Reader

I’ve used all the digital tools for implementing the “Getting Things Done (GTD)” methodology–Todoist, Nozbe, Evernote, etc.–and all can do the job. When I came upon OmniFocus, I found a tool that seemed to be closer to the core of GTD methodology than others. I downloaded the trial version and started to get to work. The problem I ran into is that it’s a simple program that has an incredible level of complexity. That is, to truly implement *your* version of GTD you need to get very comfortable with all of the features of Omnifocus quickly, before you lose steam and abandon the whole lot.

That’s where Kourosh Dini comes in. His book, “Creating Flow with OmniFocus,” takes you through all of the nitty-gritty of setting up projects, contexts, and perspectives in OmniFocus in a way that works for you. 

It’s a long book … that is, you get a lot for your money. It’s not a set of Powerpoint(tm) slides, and it’s not a feel-good book that gets you an inch deep into the program.

Instead, the author walks you through the program’s features in a way that’s technical and productive; as you follow his step-by-step instructions, you end up with a fully-configured version of OmniFocus that lets you use the program to start and end each day with a view towards the maximum amount of productivity you can accomplish.

This is not a 99-cent book; it’s expensive. Whenever I come across a book like this, I have to wonder if it will truly save time and pay for itself.

Kourosh Dini has written a book that makes that argument: you will truly save time and money implementing his principles and practices, and you will end up with a personalized system that produces a calm. clear, state of mind.

Paul Christy

I loved this [Creating Flow 3] even more than I loved Creating Flow with OmniFocus 2, which was the best productivity book I ever bought. Thank you!

Julian, Reader

I recently purchased your book Creating Flow with Omnifocus. I am truly impressed with your very creative and innovative approach to implementing GTD in Omnifocus.

Anonymous Reader

Having a solid framework has really made a difference. It’s now become second nature to my work/play.

Tom, reader

Having a solid framework has really made a difference. It’s now become second nature to my work/play.

Tom Eldridge, Invisible Ink Digital

extremely well put together and full of great tips

TylerGred, Omni Group Forums


I just want to say thank you for the effort on creating this publication about Omnifocus. I do a creative job, but with going freelance I met the struggle of running a business and all duties and responsibilities that come with it. I was totaly overwhelmed by all these things I needed to do to keep the business running. I had this moment, when my workflow stopped, I felt frustrated and depressed. I thought about closing my company. I was using Things app at the time and all the tasks were in one big bag, without contexts, groups, anything. I knew there was this Omnifocus system, but the app seemed too complicated and not legible at first sight. I watched some tutorials – still not excited about Omni. Few days ago I decided that I cant go like this and I have to switch to Omni and decided to give it one more try. I found your book. Read it in 2 days.

Now I feel like I been blind and I can see. All these things, personal, business, family, everything is organized, I dont need to think about million things to remember. I can focus on designing. I feel really free.

If not your book, I would never encourage myself to learn Omni, it just feels not intuitive at first contact. You made a huge effort to create this great book. I really feel you saved my company. And because my life is my job, you propably saved my life. From all my heart – thank you. Im sure I will buy your another book about workflow soon.

Anonymous Reader

I have incorporated your Core system and it truly is amazing how much more tasks I get done, due to not having to hunt and peck for tasks I have to do.

Patrick, reader

… hands down one of the most exhaustive and detailed resources for OmniFocus that I have seen. If you are at all intimidated by OmniFocus, or even if you are already using it daily and want to learn more about it, I highly recommend Kourosh’s ebook.

Shawn Blanc

… the book [Creating Flow with OmniFocus: Mastering Productivity] helped to significantly improve the usage and hence the value of OmniFocus.

sschultestrathaus, Omni Group forums

“… easy to understand and truly comprehensive.”

(on Creating Flow with OmniFocus: Mastering Productivity)

Stephan Lamprecht, Der Lifehacker

I was a little reluctant to buy it at first; with so much information and advice about using OF on the web I wasn’t sure that the book would add value. I am not an OF newbie and have been practicing GTD for several years, so I was unsure whether this would be more of the same information.

I was wrong, I’m only 75% through and already the book has taken my Omnifocus use and GTD practice to a new level. I would recommend it as essential reading for any OF user.

(on Creating Flow with OmniFocus: Mastering Productivity)

SteveinBristol, Omni Group forums

It's taken me 1yr but think I've finally achieved #omnifocus enlightenment thanks to @kouroshdini

Joe Cotellese

@leanda finally got around to buying Creating Flow With OmniFocus, such an awesome book. Wish I’d read it months ago :(

Jon Gold

On Taking Smart Notes with DEVONthink

Thank You Re: Announcing: Taking Smart Notes with DEVONthink


Please know how grateful I am for all your care and expertise in solving this – your solution worked perfectly! I had called Amazon and not even their Kindle experts were able to solve this. All of your books have made a big difference in my life, and I was about to give up on Devonthink and just use Dropbox to simplify everything – so this book can about at the perfect time. I have also watched your weekend music performances at particularly stressful times in my life, and that also provided tranquility that I needed at those times. I don’t know if you are aware of the lives your work has impacted, so please know I live a more productive, calm and capable life because of all the hours you sacrificed to create each of your books and because of all the expertise you spent a lifetime obtaining. I’m looking forward to whatever project follows this Devonthink book, as I know it will also be beneficial.

Thank you.




Hi Kourosh

Just a quick note to thank you for ‘Taking Smart Notes with DEVONthink’. I’ve been a DT user for several years and have independently developed similar (but not identical) systems to you. As a result, most of the book was familiar enough for me to not have to fret about tossing everything away and restarting afresh with a process that may or may not be suitable to me.  But there are also enough new ideas in there, fleshed out in such useful detail, that I’m about to go back and reread your book and try to implement the new ideas on note taking.

I had the exact same feeling when I read your Omnifocus book. Enough overlap with my existing usage of the software for me to not have to completely abandon my previous approach, but also enough new thoughts and ideas that I felt like I was getting value for my money, something I rarely feel when I purchase books that make similar promises. (I actually don’t use Omnifocus any more – I wrote my own productivity app that fits better with how I think about tasks – but that doesn’t change how useful your approach was at the time.)

All of which is to say, that if you ever write a book about how best to use Ulysses (or Scrivener at a pinch, as I know that’s your preference – one of the few areas we seem to diverge on preferred software) to manage one’s writing life, I will hurl vast sums of money in your direction. As a freelance writer myself, I’ve cobbled together an approach that separates my writing jobs (Ulysses) from my writing resources (a DEVONthink database), using Markdown and links to integrate them as necessary. But based on my experience with your first two books, I’m sure you could transform and extend how I think about my usage of the software.

Regardless of whether such a book ever emerges, thank you for the books you’ve written so far. With the impacts they’ve had on my daily workflow, they’re easily the best value for money books on software I’ve ever read.


Daniel (a different one), email

Hey Kourosh, I finished reading your new DEVONthink book and it was amazing! As I mentioned in a previous tweet, it is the perfect solution to stop cluttering OF with spontaneous thoughts or interesting material I came across and had no urge to read in the short term but might be of value on the future….

I am a huge fan of your work and your books and programs have really shaped how I approach work and even life in general!

Mauricio, email

On Being Productive – Simple Steps to Calm Focus …

I cannot recommend this video series enough. There is content here for everyone, no matter what your level of prior exposure to productivity techniques…

Lee Garrett, Productivityist and MyProdutctiveMac.com

Zen & The Art of Work is one of (if not the) best demonstrations of how these principles can lead to the calm, intentional practice of getting work done that matters.

Joe Buhlig, Author of Working with OmniFocus

Zen & the Art of Work is a guided exploration as well as quite a hard core set of instructions into optimizing your work. But rather than focusing on productivity, as most approaches do, it focuses on the quality of the work you can do, by working on the entire set-up around and about your work which will lead to better, deeper, more meaningful and ultimately more productive work. Because at the end of the day, what does productivity matter if it does not lead to more relevant results for you, right?

In this approach, Kourosh Dini, the author of Zen & the Art of Work, goes beyond some of the ideas that are presented in Getting Things Done (more commonly known as GTD) by David Allen. In my opinion, he comes closer to the essence of the Taoist thoughts that underlie the GTD approach.

Ben Broeckx, ExploringTheBlackBox.org

Exploring The Black Box

I can’t praise @Kourosh’s Being Productive enough.

Dini’s course takes an approach that lives up to its subtitle, Simple steps to calm focus. This might be expanded to be Simple, yet profound, steps to calm focus. It’s changing my relationship with my work.

Dini’s calm, professional approach is such a nice change from some other productivity/motivational people that come across as frenetic cokeheads,

This past summer, I paid $400 for an online course on focus, and while I derived some benefit from it, it came across as unfinished or lacking in its underlying framework. Dini’s course comes across as well thought out and built on foundational research. This makes sense, as Dini has years of medical and other training that enables him to build this foundation.


You have clearly demonstrated how to orchestrate our thoughts across the four elements of the toolset: Day’s List, Inbox, Action List, and Calendar. There are many overlaps with GTD, but your emphasis on the soft areas such as our feelings during the process really makes your work valuable. The subtle ‘consider to do …’ option is a great way to build habits, and start small and grow big. Lots of scientific methods to combat procrastination…

Thanks again for your great work…

S. ArBabian

On Workflow Mastery

this book is the real deal

David Sparks, Mac Power Users

as outstanding as your first work was your second is even better. I am spellbound.

Greg, Reader

… the Neil Stephenson of non-fiction

… he hits you with an idea so clear and so relevant that it blows you out of the water and leaves you on the shore, wondering how it is possible that something so clear and obvious never occurred to you. That, my friends, is genius.

… If you are even slightly interested in the dynamics of process and workflow, this is a great place to start…

Ben Broeckx, Exploring the Black Box

… very deep insights into what is behind personal productivity. It goes beyond that. When I read an advanced draft version of the book, I was struck by how deeply the content resonated with me and felt true at an almost intuitive level. It makes sense, in that it comes very close to making clear why we function how we do when we aim to achieve a higher personal productivity. And that approach, more than many approaches I’ve read and studied before, actually allows you to enhance your current workflow.

Ben Broeckx, Exploring the Black Box

… renders visible those logically flawed but long invisible assumptions that lead us to create more work or stress for ourselves than is really necessary.

Christopher Robert, Curvewriting

… the Euclid of workflow and doing things. While other people are vaguely talking about soccer fields as plains, you are strictly defining them as infinitely thin things that expand in 2 directions. The intentionality and rigor of the first edition of this book gave such great structure to talking about productivity, doing things, loving things and making space for things.

Sean & Josh, readers

I have purchased Kourosh’s books on productivity and Omni Focus, “Creating Flow With Omni Focus” and “Workflow: Beyond Productivity.

These works helped me tremendously to move forward much faster in my productivity.

Kourosh has a wonderful writing style, his meanings always bringing even deeper thoughts than what they first seem to want to say to the reader.

Dragan Ruzic, LinkedIn

Do note, your experience may be different than those quoted above.