• Getting Things Done

  • The Art of Stress-Free Productivity
  • By: David Allen
  • Narrated by: David Allen
  • Length: 10 hrs and 23 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (5,913 ratings)

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Getting Things Done

By: David Allen
Narrated by: David Allen
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Publisher's Summary

David Allen reads an all-new edition of his popular self-help classic for managing work-life balance in the 21st century - now updated for the new challenges facing individuals and organizations in today's rapidly changing world.

Since it was first published more than 15 years ago, David Allen's Getting Things Done has become one of the most influential business books of its era and the ultimate book on personal organization. "GTD" is now shorthand for an entire way of approaching professional and personal tasks and has spawned an entire culture of websites, organizational tools, seminars, and offshoots.

Allen has rewritten the book from start to finish, tweaking his classic text with important perspectives on the new workplace and adding material that will make the book fresh and relevant for years to come. This new edition of Getting Things Done will be welcomed not only by its hundreds of thousands of existing fans but also by a whole new generation eager to adopt its proven principles.

©2001 David Allen (P)2001 Simon & Schuster

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What listeners say about Getting Things Done

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Ignore Reviews Claiming "No New Material"

I'm at a loss for why anyone would claim this book is the same as original. Unless a person doesn't read it in its entirety or is hoping for a new quick fix that varied greatly from the original program, this book is a new life changer all is own. David Allen addresses most all of the "holes" that one might have found in the first writing. He gives a much more extensive, detailed explanation of the 5 steps of GTD, their benefits, new best practices for each, scientific reasoning and common pitfalls. Lastly, he's not the same person he was 15 years ago and explains things in a more understandable and organized manner in this edition. This is not a rewrite done to keep an publisher with new material. This is one of the most well thought our rewrites I've ever read. If you are a GTDer, or a constantly restarting want to be, lol, like I was for years, this book will bring new life to your efforts to have a mind like water.

90 people found this helpful

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Worthy Upgrade - Worth Your Time

This new audio edition of Getting Things Done advances the practice of GTD and covers a slightly updated process as we have embraced new technology along with reinforcing the tenets of the GTD methodology that have been proven-out by research conducted over the years since the first edition was released.

This Audible edition will inspire new students to embrace the practice of GTD and will re-energize current practitioners that might need a shot in the arm.

As with the first edition of Getting Things Done, hearing David Allen explain GTD will inspire you to jump into GTD with both feet. His narration comes from the heart which only makes the "story" better.

Solid production only adds to a wonderful listening experience. Highly recommended!

66 people found this helpful

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Rewritten word for word? Literally, yes...

David Allen says in the book he has rewritten the original, from scratch. If he did that, it's been an incredibly unproductive effort as it seems to have been rewritten word for word, something that only makes sense if he was learning how to write on a typewriter or keyboard.

Yes, the words are almost literally the same as in the original. Some of the terms have been recoined to better fit the language used in his last book "Making It All Work" – which I find by far his best, by the way. MIAW is an underestimated gem.

Yes, David has added a chapter or two, but all of a sudden the book was over, and I hadn't come across much new stuff. I think this will be true for many who've followed David Allen / GTD for some years. There's not been much changed or added, and what has, you'll already be familiar with, from the interwebs, blogs, etc.

So if you don't have the original book: get this one. If you do have it: skip this one.

55 people found this helpful

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OMG! I genuinely believe this will change my life!

I'm a 36 yr old woman who has ADHD and has suffered much stress, anxiety & shame from a severely disorganised adult life; rarely planning ahead more than a month or so. And while realize this is not a cure-all, I have more hope than ever before that I can get a handle on tasks, projects and life goals. Thank you so much!

52 people found this helpful

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Absolute must read! Or hear in this case!

This book has changed my life since I first read it but hearing this new version has revealed new meaning and content that was not clear up to now. The fact the author himself reads it is an advantage because the right emphasis is given to the most important topics. If you need to get some focus and get closer to mind like water hear this!

42 people found this helpful

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Lots of rambling. Hard to follow as an audiobook

What would have made Getting Things Done better?

If it's more to the point. He rambles on and on.

What could David Allen have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Make it more clear. Stop talking about how awesome and important this book is. I went through the first 3 hours and couldn't stand it anymore.

What didn’t you like about David Allen’s performance?

I had to speed it up, but it was a bunch of rambling anyway that was hard to follow as a book.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

nothing new. Anger and frustration. I was really looking forward to hearing this book but it may be better if i can browse through it at the bookstore.

37 people found this helpful

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Create a List

Seriously, this is a revolutionary time management or productivity system? Create a list. Then, work the list. I just saved you $10 and 10 hours.

36 people found this helpful

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Repetitive

I did not listen to the shorter version of the book but there isn't much content here. I am certain that all of the primary points are in the 3 hour version of the audiobook.

In this version, the author cites his love for the use of paper with his system numerous times. He always caveats computer usage like it is inferior and foreign to him. I have finished over 100 audiobooks (mostly nonfiction) and I could not finish this book even after putting it on 2x. He simply repeats himself too much.

I will be requesting a refund.

30 people found this helpful

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Inbox Zero Achieved

I first read GTD many years ago and implemented some of the principles. As I am looking to step up my productivity, I decided to grab the updated audio version.

The second time through is already proving successful as I was able to get my email inbox to zero (from 8k) and have next actions assigned to all projects. With each accomplishment, I gain more fuel to drive me further within the GTD program.

My only complaint is that the audio book was a bit dull at times, and hard to get through. As a returning GTD believer, I knew it was worth pushing through, but more real world stories or implementations (similar to what is on the GTD podcast) would make it easier to get through the book.

Complaint aside, I believe if I get one great takeaway from a book it was worth it, and GTD delivers many more.

29 people found this helpful

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Get. To. The. Point.

Another “get stuff done” book that rambles and rambles and rambles. The lack of brevity in a book supposedly about efficiency is painfully ironic.

27 people found this helpful

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  • C
  • 04-18-16

Good overview of methodology but only in addition to the book

Well read and structured and very handy to listen to in order to get an overview of the methodology when reading isn't convenient. To get the most out of GTD however you need the book with all of the workflow diagrams etc that are included in the print publication that audio obviously does not provide so this is good audiobook when in addition to the print version, not quite as useful without it.

58 people found this helpful

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  • Ian
  • 10-16-16

Getting Things Done by David Allen

I work for a large Acute healthcare provider in the East Midlands in the UK. This book was recommended to me by the Trust Secretary over 4 years ago in November 2012 after he did a training for me and my team one Saturday morning. He said to me that most people would not follow the GTD system, but he was happy to give up his time for the few that would so. I finally read the first version of GTD whilst on honeymoon in September 2016. I was amazed and relieved that all my efforts of trying to get more organised and more productive, which had most all invariably failed, had not been due to my lack of effort or willingness to improve but rather due to not having a trusted system for getting things done. I instantly applied the teachings in the book upon my return to work and feel more relaxed and more productive immediately. I have also purchased the audio version of the second edition and plan to listen to it on my daily commutes until I have fully implemented the GTD system. This book may well have saved my sanity and career in the healthcare sector.

38 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Hipcity
  • 04-10-18

slow

2 hours into this book and still trying to get to the steps. goodness me. let move on and get on with it

14 people found this helpful

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  • Adib
  • 07-16-16

Not great on audio

Useful content but it's more of a reference book so likely better to read in print than listen to as audio

10 people found this helpful

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  • Kugen
  • 05-18-16

Already feeling the reduction in stress

Have already started implementing with Evernote while listening to this audio book and it's fantastic! The examples provided are very clear and useful.

10 people found this helpful

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  • A.I.Pegan
  • 12-27-16

For the working parent

This is a great book for all parents who are working when they feel things are getting on top of them. The only thing you may find is that when listening to the book one must repeat the chapters to understand the principles and techniques required for their own personal circumstances. The GTD methodology is unique for each individual person, as I have come to realise. This alone poses a challenge of organising oneself and the book alone will not give you simple instructions which will fit perfectly. All areas will need to be created by you and once in place, may need to be adapted when different challenges present themselves. The book itself gives a good foundation however and is an essential read.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-27-20

Possibly the most annoying book on Audible

I have to be honest and say this book is one of the most frustrating I've ever downloaded. Talk about stating the obvious.
I can't even figure out who this book is aimed at, people with zero common sense?
It takes forever to get going and never really does, is full of unnecessary lists and examples just to pad it out.
The whole idea and message of this book can be done in two short sentences:
Write things down. Do it. - That's it.
The irony is that you can save nearly 11 hours of your life, not listen to it and actually get things done during that time.
I made it to chapter 3 before losing my patience. There's so much basic information in here it's a wonder it doesn't include: Remember to get out of bed, eat so you have energy, wear clothes so you don't get cold (seriously, it's that basic).
Removed from library and will be returned, annoyingly useless.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Ted F.
  • 03-13-18

Boring

The whole book is summarised in the first chapter, no need to listen further. Also this guy will send you to sleep. 👍🏼

4 people found this helpful

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  • Mr. James C. Brown
  • 12-14-16

beneficial to everyone

this will become a classic. complements other 'personal development' books. I am a middle management information worker in IT with a business on the side and busy family life. the book has been baring fruit immediately and I'm on Positive trajectory as I invest in the methodology

4 people found this helpful

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  • Gregory
  • 05-23-17

Highly recommended a million times!

This is one of the books that has impacted my life the most over the last 7 years.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Joanna
  • 06-01-18

Useful but too long

Good and useful advice, but could easily be condensed to a quarter of the books length

8 people found this helpful

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  • Daniel J Gavin
  • 09-26-18

gtd is useful but not really suited ...

to audio, since its essentially a reference and unless you create a stack of tags, is hard to rereference

3 people found this helpful

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  • Grant
  • 06-04-16

Brain relief

GTD finally freed my brain from all the "coulda, shoulda, woulda, but not sure how to" and let me focus on "right now" again because "later" has been captured and will look after itself.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Stephen Long
  • 01-30-19

No chapters available.

A great book and engaging listen. The chapters are not provided and not ability to jump between. I found this frustrating.

2 people found this helpful

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  • anja
  • 03-05-18

Loved the content...

The content is great but the author is not the best story teller. It dragged!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Marlou
  • 02-16-18

Good idea but intense to listen to

I think this book would be better as a text, because listening to it you sometimes lose the line of the story. The ideas are great. I came here after listening to zen to done because I wanted more background information. I think in the end zen to done is more my style, but I am going to give this another listen for sure!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Rod
  • 08-25-16

Fantastic

Was a good listen at a reasonable pace. Suggest having the paper or ebook version as a reference once you have listened to the original GTD text.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Suzanna
  • 10-09-21

Life at the next level

This book is for anyone that has experienced overwhelm and is bursting with ideas and goals to achieve in one lifetime.
The principles are straightforward and practical to implement into day to day life.
The book will require several reads to go back and truly understand and implement each aspect of the system to build confidence in the application of GTD and build mastery in its use.
The contents are just as relevant to a home maker as to a CEO.
I appreciated the many real life examples given in the book to cement a practical understanding of the methods.
A worthwhile read and worth sharing with others.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-10-21

So helpful!

This is a complete guide to organising your life. It guides step by step all the areas needed to get clear and take meaningful action. The presentation is a bit dry so I listened at 1.3 x speed and took prolific notes! Highly recommend.

1 person found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-13-20

Painfully boring, outdated and stereotypical

This book is the single most boring and frustrating book I have ever read. With recent advances in digital systems, even the latest update of the book is now very outdated. The old fashioned concepts of manual paper filing systems are all but gone in most workplaces now. The examples used are so often narrowly focussed to the American business executive world. The author makes continual grand assumptions about the audience to the point that it is a frustrating and annoying distraction from the content. This is a popular book and concept, but I am really left wondering how anyone can make it to the end without poking their eyeballs out in frustration. 1 star. Disappointing.

1 person found this helpful