Book Review: Getting Things Done by David Allen

The Problem

I wrote this book review almost a decade ago for another blog that I wrote. Getting Things Done is one of the books that changed the way that I work. A decade later I still use the GTD system. I use Evernote as a supplement to my system. You can read the original review below.

I Was Ineffiecient

My workflow has always been inefficient. From my earliest days in school till just recently I have been an unorganized mess. While my quality of work has always been high, the amount of time and effort involved in obtaining that quality was on the long and difficult side. From elementary school though my junior year in college I was grossly inefficient at getting things done. I would always finish my projects on time, but things were never well organized. Things were never well organized because I had never been taught how to be organized. My senior year in college I read a blog post about being more efficient with my time. I started blocking out 4 hour chunks of time to work on projects and doing them one at a time and taking no breaks. This method worked well for me, but I still had other things on my mind that made me ineffective with my time.

Something Had To Give

Since graduating college, getting married and starting my own business my organizational skills really started showing up as being quite poor. I was terrible at managing my time. I had a very hard time making time for my business, my family, my friends and also wanting to get more involved with other organizations. I figured it was time to try to get things prioritized. There had to be a better way to do things then they way I had been doing them.

I was on twitter about a year ago and a friend of mine tweeted about David Allen's bookGetting Things Done. They said that they were going to start a getting things done system, and sent me two links about what that was. The first link was to an article about using Gmail as your central “Get it Done” inbox(to The second link was to an application called Evernote that one man used to change hislife(

These two links got me started with GTD. Later I decided to buy the book.

A Simple Concept

David Allen has a simple concept. Get things out of your head and on paper. David Allen says that if you can get all of the ideas swirling around in your head on paper that you can be more productive. David advocates writing all the ideas down and putting them in a filing system. David has a great system that I have implemented in my life. I have become more productive with his system. Writing everything down and organizing it into distinct areas and projects has helped me to get more done and to remember more stuff that I need to do. I recommend GTD for those that are looking to help out their workflow in any industry. The concepts that David presents can be implemented in any knowledge or creative job. This is a great read for photographers. You can apply the workflow discussed in the book to your creative process. You can apply the concepts to client meetings, post processing, and your daily life.

Where To Buy

I purchased my copy from Amazon's Kindle Store. You can purchase your though this link Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity

Why Read?

As freelance photographers we spend a lot of our time working on projects for clients. We also spend a lot of time watching and reading photography tutorials. Both of these things are great. We also need to sharpen the saw on personal and business development. Reading books is a fantastic way to expand our view of the world and learn new things.

About Nick

Nick Bumgardner is a commercial photographer based in Nashville, TN. He has 12 years of experience in food, beverage, and product photography.