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Zen To Done: The Ultimate Simple Productivity System [Kindle Edition]

Leo Babauta
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (90 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Zen To Done takes the best aspects of a few popular productivity systems (Getting Things Done, 7 Habits and others) and combines them with the mandate of simplicity. It makes things as simple as possible, and no more.

Zen To Done is a simple system to get you more organized and productive, and keep your life saner and less stressed, with a set of habits. ZTD teaches you:

* The key habits needed to be productive, organized, and simplified... and no more than that.
* How to implement these key habits... tips on forming a habit.
* How to organize these habits into a simple system that will keep everything in your life in its place.
* How to simplify what you need to do.
* Includes an even simpler version called Minimal ZTD.

Dozens of readers have written to me with comments about how ZTD has changed their lives, made them more organized and less stressed, and has worked better than other productivity systems. It’s definitely worth a try.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Leo Babauta has been a reporter, editor, speechwriter, and freelance writer for the last 17 years. Babauta lives in Guam with his wife and five children, where he posts regularly on

Product Details

  • File Size: 127 KB
  • Print Length: 114 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Phatbits, LLC (April 24, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001970HQU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #35,908 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
139 of 143 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
David Allen has a near cult following for his Getting Things Done approach to, well, getting things done. I am a sometimes member of that cult, but I keep falling off the GTD wagon. Even David Allen admits to falling off the GTD wagon.

Getting Things Done is deceptively simple when it is merely described. You read it and think to yourself "I can do that!" But in reality, GTD demands the dedication of a monk to really make it work. Minutes to learn, a lifetime to master, so to speak.

Along comes Leo Babauta with "Zen To Done" which he freely and accurately describes as an adaptation of GTD - and it is a well-done adaptation.

"Zen To Done" (ZTD) offers a simplification of Allen's Gettiing Things Done. As Babauta describes it: "a set of 10 habits that will help you get organized, simplify your life, get things under control and actually get things done".

Conceptually ZTD appears simpler to implement than GTD with fewer nuances. Babauta distinguishes ZTD from GTD on a number of issues. He actually describes these details in an FAQ chapter at the end of the book which is quite helpful in comprehending ZTD.

With ZTD, you don't have to change a lot of habits at once, which GTD requires. ZTD also is more oriented to simplicity; it is not as all-encompassing as GTD. ZTD day imposes more of a structure on your day than GTD, which is actually helpful for people like me who find choosing between priorities sometimes difficult.

It is fair to see ZTD as GTD Lite, which is not to infer that Babauta has infringed on Allen or Covey or the others whose ideas he incorporates. All of them, matter of fact, have built on the shoulders of others.

Overall, "Zen To Done" is one of the more interesting time management books I've seen lately and I am going to give the ZTD method a rigorous try.

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137 of 149 people found the following review helpful
By Mary
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
2014 update:
in 2012, the wonderful author Geoffrey Elliott fixed this problem and provided an updated Kindle version, including working links to all the missing forms, to me. From what I read here, the Kindle version works great now. And, yes, I enjoyed this book very much; plus: the handy forms! I should have mentioned that. Zen to Done was a very enjoyable and helpful book to me.

2010 review (Kindle version was missing content back then; now repaired)
I wish I had purchased the eBook directly from the author's website. Instead, I paid full price to get a Kindle ebook (which I read on my computer) that has NO links to the promised extensive references, and NO way to find the blank forms he promised. For the same price, elsewhere, I could have had the whole deal. I wish a disclaimer was put on this Kindle site, explaining that you are getting a seriously truncated version of this book. If you are thinking of purchasing this version, think twice. I suggest that you opt for the paper book OR the full-service ebook the author sells elsewhere.
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53 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Effective, Simple, Easy Read October 31, 2008
I like this book and the concepts within. I've read or read about all the hot time management and self improvement books. I've always wanted to read them all and distill their simple basics into one action plan. Now I don't have to make the effort. "Zen to Done" has done it for me. I'm implementing one habit at a time, as recommended. I'm even starting a group with my employees to read the book and each of us will tackle our own habit and report back progress and recommendations each subsequent week. The key to this book is flexibility and simplicity. You don't have to move a mountain all at once. One hand full of dirt and rock at a time will do it too. I recommend this book.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Simple productivity system based on Allen's GTD December 27, 2011
"Zen To Done" by Leo Babauta is a simple productivity system based on the principles taught by David Allen in his popular "Getting Things Done" combined with some other strategies the author found useful. The book came about from the author's website, Zen Habits, and I strongly recommend you check out the website to learn more about both the author and his Zen To Done strategies.

So why "Zen To Done" when the author admits that Allen's GTD is already a great system? It's because sometimes putting GTD into practice is difficult for some people. Therefore, "Zen To Done" is an adaptation of the GTD principles that simplifies them and helps implement the strategies, or habits, at a slower pace. In fact, Babuata says you should work at implementing the 10 habits he shares in "Zen To Done" over a year's time, not all at once. That is one of the difficulties he describes with GTD, that people have trouble with a bunch of habit changes all at once. He also stresses a bit more on doing than he believes GTD does. That and he tried to simplify things to make it easier. So, in a nutshell, "Zen To Done" is a set of ten habits that will help you get organized, simplify your life, get things under control, and actually get things done.

These habits are: 1. Collect. 2. Process. 3. Plan. 4. Do. 5. Simple Trusted System. 6. Organize. 7. Review. 8. Simplify. 9. Routine. 10. Find your passion. The author also shares that implementing ten new habits can be overwhelming and too complicated, so for those that want the simplest system possible, the minimalist version of "Zen To Done" is doing the first four habits: collect, process, plan, and do. With just these four, you can greatly improve your productivity and lesson stress.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Good to read
This is a good overview of GTD-like productivity habits. I felt like there was both a little abstraction and concreteness missing. Read more
Published 17 days ago by Kenneth M Evitt
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Simple to follow action PA that facilitates excellent results
Published 22 days ago by lilian sonne
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful, but ...
I rather like this little book and have gone through it twice now. I'm implementing some of its advice and thinking on implementing more. Read more
Published 1 month ago by J. Marlin
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
too bad, but noting new worth reading about here.
Published 1 month ago by karen glass
5.0 out of 5 stars Right to the point!
Great practical advice for increasing productivity. Easy to implement strategies that will help anyone overcome procrastination.
Published 2 months ago by Christopher Andrews
2.0 out of 5 stars good tips, bad typos
This book is full of small typos. I find that so unprofessional that it is hard to enjoy reading an otherwise great book with good productivity content.
Published 2 months ago by Emily
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome
This is a great book for anybody looking to simplify their life and get more things done! It also helps with people need to get organized.
Published 3 months ago by David
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple book but really put's into light things you can ...
Simple book but really put's into light things you can do to make your day something you can tackle.
Published 3 months ago by D. A. Oesterreich
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb add-on for getting things done
I'm a huge fan of GTD, and have used this system on a daily basis for about 7 years. However, recently, I'd come to the conclusion that I really needed to make some major... Read more
Published 4 months ago by P. A. Lavender
2.0 out of 5 stars Nothing new here
Well written short introduction to GTD. I do not see much new here if you already are familiar with the concept. Leo is trying to make it at bit simpler.
Published 4 months ago by Claus
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