Zen to Done

The Ultimate Simple Productivity System
Narrated by: Fred Stella
Length: 1 hr and 46 mins
4.1 out of 5 stars (345 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Zen To Done (ZTD) is a system that is at once simple, and powerful, and will help you develop the habits that keep all of your tasks and projects organized, that keep your workday simple and structured, that keep your desk and email inbox clean and clear, and that keep you doing what you need to do, without distractions. This book was written for those who want to get their lives organized and actually execute the things on their to-do list by changing existing habits. And let me say that changing your habits is possible. Using the habit-changing techniques I describe in this book, I have made many habit changes: I quit smoking, started running, started eating healthier, completed a marathon, doubled my income and got my finances in order, have almost eliminated my debt now, completed a triathlon, lost more than 20 pounds, and started a successful blog, and more. Read this book. You'll be amazed at what you can accomplish with this productivity system.

©2008 Leo Babauta (P)2011 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What listeners say about Zen to Done

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The simplest and right version of GTD. Recommended

- Small Notebook is the best way to capture things.
- Everything should be done as simple as possible.
- The best way to be productive is to find one single goal and do everything to achieve it.
- One habit at a time.
- Find passion. There is no other way to be happy with your job.

Minimalistic version of ZTD is amazing and really fits to my idea of life and to my new lifestyle desing. Amazing and short book. Much better to listen/read after GTD by David Allen.

11 people found this helpful

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ZTD or GTD?

I was introduced first with GTD. GTD is excellent. But if I was to make a choice which product is more effective, simple, better result and succinct in delivering the goods... then ZTD gets my vote.

9 people found this helpful

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Simple and Effective

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I cannot tell you how much i have struggled to get my life organised. The flow of this system worked for me. I had read GTD before and totally agreed with it's premise but never really implemented it in full (and then gave up). ZTD simplified the system in a way that gels with my way of thinking and working. I now carry a notepad everywhere (I am on on step 3 now) and even doing that one step changed my entire approach. After listening to this book I felt entirely capable of making the changes. The steps outlined do not require an entire overhaul of your life. If you are struggling to get yourself in order - this is the system you should look into. Simple, straightforward and very effective.
Thank you.

What other book might you compare Zen to Done to and why?

This is GTD as it should be - and I have listed to both books and the ZTD approach works for me. I love how you can organise you life with a notepad, a pen and some simple inboxes. Thats it!

5 people found this helpful

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Simple productivity

If you could sum up Zen to Done in three words, what would they be?

Simplicity is key

What about Fred Stella’s performance did you like?

Lively, yet serious reading style is sometimes unnecessarily theatrical

Any additional comments?

Babauta provides step-by-step instructions on how to develop a productivity system without becoming overwhelmed. I've only implemented a few steps and already see a difference in productivity!

4 people found this helpful

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Too simplistic and lacking in usefull insight

Would you try another book from Leo Babauta and/or Fred Stella?

No

Would you ever listen to anything by Leo Babauta again?

Maybe if it was longer and it recieved good reviews

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

No. It seem artificial and unnatural

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

Irritation

Any additional comments?

In general this was just too short to be usefull. Every time it scratched at something interesting it jumped to a new topic...

3 people found this helpful

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Nice Organizing guide

What did you love best about Zen to Done?

I loved the ease on how this book teaches you about how to be better and focus on what you love to do.

What other book might you compare Zen to Done to and why?

Reworked - Because takes the same path of focusing on simplicity taking one goal and chopping it into smaller tasks.

What about Fred Stella’s performance did you like?

He's smart and knows exactly how to get the reader to understand and digest what he is saying.

What insight do you think you’ll apply from Zen to Done?

Focusing on only one goal and one only, chopping the goal into daily tasks, weekly and monthly and not to star another goal until I have finished the goal I'm working on.

2 people found this helpful

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A series of blog posts about the same topic

Over and over. The narrator even references clickable links to other posts during the reading. This is a waste of money. You're better served going to the Zen Habits site and reading it for free, or just buying the actual book this is cribbed from.

1 person found this helpful

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Eliminate trivial and do the important things

It's short and simple... it provides actions to absorb, practice, and slowly implement so they become habits. There isn't anything inspiring just steps to follow to narrow down your "to do" items to essentials and to start from important to trivial (unless you've delegated and eliminated them).

5 people found this helpful

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ZTD is Simple, Effective

What did you love best about Zen to Done?

I loved the author's focus on changing your habits, and the step-by-step instruction is well-articulated. Found myself taking notes!

What did you like best about this story?

See above.

Have you listened to any of Fred Stella’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

NA

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

NA

1 person found this helpful

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Too many acronymns; assumes prior insight

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

It depends.. The speaker uses many acronyms and references to other goal-setting material, and the content assumes that the listener already has all of this knowledge. It takes perhaps halfway through the book before some of it starts to make sense. If someone had prior knowledge of some of these terms that the author uses (like GTD) then sure, I would recommend. But not for just picking up off the shelf.

Would you recommend Zen to Done to your friends? Why or why not?

It depends.. The speaker uses many acronyms and references to other goal-setting material, and the content assumes that the listener already has all of this knowledge. It takes perhaps halfway through the book before some of it starts to make sense. If someone had prior knowledge of some of these terms that the author uses (like GTD) then sure, I would recommend. But not for just picking up off the shelf.

What aspect of Fred Stella’s performance would you have changed?

The speaker's tone was soft and lilting, not high-performance nor energetic. I suppose this is to play on the "zen" idea, but if I am looking for goal setting motivation, I'd expect to hear energy and excitement in the speaker. His delivery was more spa-like.

Was Zen to Done worth the listening time?

I suppose. I will listen to it again for some of the nuggets that were worth learning.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Daniel Johnston
  • 03-21-16

ok, talks too much about GTD...

it's ok. After listening to this book I cannot remember, nor do I understand what Zen to Done actually is. The author spends too much time comparing his method to GTD. It would be far better If this book focused more on the structure, application, and examples of what ZTD is, and how and when to use it, rather than consistently compare it with GTD.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Timothy
  • 06-19-19

short, sound advice.

I've been a fan of leo for many years now. this book is a great combination of productivity ideas condensed to the bear essentials typical of Zen Habits.

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  • ajnnngs
  • 08-23-15

Simple and sensible

I really liked this it was thought provoking and I will listen again. Long enough for me! A good listen