There are tons of productivity books, guides and courses around, so we have gathered the best productivity books in a list to share with you, with the hopes they also teach you new lessons and how to be more productive.
What Makes A Productivity Book Gem?
So what makes a good productivity book? You can find the same sort of productivity tips and information online, but a good book needs to come from a unique approach, a different angle to productivity that is not only proven to work but also makes sense.
The best productivity books are also made up of timeless systems. This means it will never go out of fashion, they're not just tips and tricks that are trending right now, they are systems that will work whenever for whoever and hopefully forever.
Finally, a good book for boosting productivity always incorporates the importance of a healthy work-life balance. There's no need to burn yourself out with being productive, there needs to be an essence of balance and a healthy approach to work.
Best Productivity Books Summary List
Here's the list of the best books to make you more productive.
- 1. Getting Things Done by David Allen - For task and note management
- 2. Building A Second Brain by Tiago Forte - For building a notes system.
- 3. Eat That Frog by Brian Tracey - How to handle tough tasks.
- 4. Atomic Habits by James Clear - For habit tracking and healthy routines.
- 5. Make Time by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky - Creating healthy approaches
- 6. Four Thousand Weeks by Oliver Burkeman - The importance of balance and life.
- 7. How to be a Productivity Ninja by Graham Allcott - To enjoy productivity.
Let's dive into a little more detail about each productivity book.
1. Getting Things Done by David Allen
Getting Things Done by David Allen was first published in 2001 and was the beginning of the GTD methodology.
The GTD method is a way of gaining control over your tasks to get more done and achieve a less stressful life. The book talks about how most people experience stress due to their unprocessed thoughts and unfinished tasks.
Getting Things Done helps users organise their tasks to reduce the mental clutter many of us have when trying to do more than one thing at a time with no set plan or method. Throughout the book, you can learn how to handle personal life and work life with a better balance.
Overall, Getting Things Done gives advice on handling life, work, stress, managing thoughts and creating a system to complete daily tasks with less stress to achieve a more balanced lifestyle.
2. Building a Second Brain by Tiago Forte
Building a Second Brain by Tiago Forte was first published in 2020 and was created to teach others how to manage their notes and knowledge in a "Second Brain" system.
The book talks all about how to enhance your personal knowledge management by creating a Second Brain to capture, organise and retrieve information to help you remember things, achieve goals, and store important thoughts or notes you may need in the future.
The book goes over different apps you can use to create a Second Brain and different methods like the PARA method for organising your notes and thoughts. Illustrations and graphics help the reader understand the concept a little better too.
Overall, Building a Second Brain teaches you how to make the most of all your thoughts, notes, ideas and knowledge to create a workflow and system that helps you achieve goals.
3. Eat That Frog by Brian Tracey
Eat That Frog by Brian Tracey was first published in 2001, the book helps to motivate readers to complete their important tasks first by working on their time management skills.
This book is a motivational guide covering many strategies and concepts to help readers learn how to manage their time better, boost productivity and get more things done by achieving their most important goal or completing the highest priority task first.
Some strategies Eat That Frog covers are priority settings, self-discipline and optimising your environment to create the right physical and mental space to get things done and complete your daily tasks, all whilst having a healthy work-life balance through time management.
Overall, Eat That Frog is all about the concept of completing the biggest, or highest priority task first to therefore boost motivation and productivity for the rest of the day.
4. Atomic Habits by James Clear
Atomic Habits by James Clear was first published in 2018. The book teaches the science behind habits, and how to create healthy sustainable habits and break the bad ones.
The main premise of the books is to teach readers to create small and easy-to-complete habits to build up to creating the whole or larger habit. It also covers different strategies and real-life examples. So when you read the book you can test different methods and see what works for you.
Some of the key concepts Atomic Habits covers are The Four Laws of Behaviour Change and the Two Minute Rule for setting small achievable goals to feel motivated towards creating a new healthy habit or breaking a bad one.
Overall, Atomic Habits is an in-depth book with achievable methods to create healthier and sustainable habits to achieve your goals and lead a better lifestyle.
5. Make Time by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky
Make Time by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky was first published in 2018 and is all about making time for the things you want to achieve, and the things that make you happy.
Make Time helps readers improve on their daily routines to achieve better focus and productivity towards the things they want to do and want to achieve, rather than wasting time and not moving forward to achieve goals.
The authors of the book share their own stories and a four-step framework to help readers make better more informed choices on how they spend their time in order to fit in both work and the fun fulfilling elements of life. These concepts include highlighting important tasks and removing distractions to get things done.
Make Time also covers the importance of prioritising your mental and physical health because when you do, you'll be in a better positive to work harder and enjoy life at the same time. Overall, the goal readers are trying to achieve is the make more informed conscious decisions about how they spend their time.
6. Four Thousand Weeks by Oliver Burkeman
Four Thousand Weeks by Oliver Burkeman was first published in 2022, it's a thought-provoking book challenging the way we spend time and toxic productivity.
This book is about making the most of the time you have with what you have rather than dwelling on your limiting beliefs that you cannot do things. It also talks about how doing tons of things at once creates more stress and a less meaningful lifestyle.
So, basically, this book teaches readers to embrace what they have and where they are to make the most of their time, to stop trying to do tons of things with no meaning, and to do the things that will bring positive outcomes and fulfilment instead.
Four Thousand Weeks uses insights from psychologists, spiritual teachers and philosophers to help readers create a better relationship with their time.
7. How to be a Productivity Ninja by Graham Allcott
How to be a Productivity Ninja by Graham Allcott was first published in 2014. This book is all about being more mindful towards your approach to productivity and creating a unique system that works for you.
It teaches you how to worry less, achieve more and enjoy the things you do. The aim is to become someone who is great at managing their time, and tasks all whilst creating a well-balanced life with work and personal achievements.
How to be a Productivity Ninja follows a framework to create your own routine to be more productive and less stressed, some of the key concepts include capturing and organising tasks and practising mindfulness along with energy management.
Overall, this book is a mindfulness-based productivity book to help readers reduce being overwhelmed by tasks to create a more fulfilling life with reachable achievements.
- What Makes A Productivity Book Gem?
- Best Productivity Books Summary List
- 1. Getting Things Done by David Allen
- 2. Building a Second Brain by Tiago Forte
- 3. Eat That Frog by Brian Tracey
- 4. Atomic Habits by James Clear
- 5. Make Time by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky
- 6. Four Thousand Weeks by Oliver Burkeman
- 7. How to be a Productivity Ninja by Graham Allcott
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