A work desk from the user viewpoint. A pc and keyboard surrounded with piles of paper, gadgets, pens, and other stationary. There isn't much clear desk space.

When To Use Personal Productivity


This post was written before I fully understood landscape of neurodiversity.

My earlier posts on a productivity system are still relevant. The system works well for autistics and for people with ADHD who need a structure.

In my last blog post, I wrote about some principles of personal productivity. Sticking to principles, I’d like to share when to use personal productivity and a bit about not using it all the time.

Systems and Mindset

Personal productivity is a system combined with a mindset. Mindset is important because the best systems in the world don’t work if they’re not used.

Having a mindset that some things are best systemised, and some things not, is useful for personal productivity.


You can choose which bits of your life will benefit from a personal productivity system. These choices depend on your circumstances and your needs. Your personal productivity system is therefore designed to support you when you need it to.

One of the first and easiest decisions is whether to use personal productivity systems for work, non-work life, or both. Here are some common scenarios to help you make your choices.

ScenarioSystem Needed?
Work is knowledge-based with tasks delegated to me. I must manage my own workload. Yes
Work is already tightly controlled, and I have little choice in what I do and when. No
I work from home, self-directed. Boundaries are blurred. Yes
Life is haphazard, and I want to get things under control so I can relax and enjoy life.Yes
Home life is organic, and I enjoy it this way. Someone else has got all the responsibility for organising the bills, birthdays, and maintenance.No
I have lots of spare time, but I keep forgetting important things I need to do. Yes

Of course, we don’t all fit into nice, neat boxes like the above list, but hopefully, you can get an idea of when a personal productivity system could help you.

In other posts, I will write about when productivity systems make things worse and a bit more about how a system is put together. In the meantime, you can download 34 productivity tips if you want to get some ideas.


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