3 Geared Productivity System

If you’d known me for sometimes, you know that I’ve been trying to hack my productivity. I’ve seriously contesting myself to improve upon my efficiency at work and my personal endeavors. Studying David Allen’s GTD, Mark Forster’s TM systems, Bullet Journal to the recent suggestions by Kevin Kruse’s Calendar-based system, Peter Bregman’s 18 minutes tool, Tony Schwartz’s 90 minutes time blocking.

If you’re like me, you must heard of few of the names above and even more.

Sometimes back, I have consolidated my learning into a system, that I’m calling as ‘3 Geared Productivity System’. It is not an out-of-the-world novel idea, but did me good.


3 gears-3

Three Gears of the 3-Geared Productivity System

Gear #1: Collect

This part is a no-brainer. It is about collecting/ capturing things. Almost every productivity systems has this one of their core principles. It could be list of items, tasks, reminders, events, ideas, projects, anything goes.

I prefer to have one LONG list of things. I found pen and a notebook convenient. You could also use a digital app.

Gear #2: Process

  • Differentiate between task, project (that has multiple set of tasks), recurring items, events/ schedules/ meetings/ appointment.
  • Events/ reminders go into the Calendar
  • Tasks/ Projects kept in the list
  • I have been using Mark Forster’s FV Algorithm to process my list.
    • ‘What do I want to do more than x?’
    • I like the creative use of Structured Procrastination and Colley’s Rule in making the algorithm work.
    • More so, what I like about this method of processing is that it balances 3 needs – Urgency, Importance, Psychological Readiness (readiness being the key here). It also removes unnecessary overhead in maintaining a to-do list.

I think this gear is important to actually doing things, which is our Gear #3.

Gear #3: Engage

Almost every productivity gets the above two right, but terribly silent when it comes to actually doing things. Few systems do provide some solution

  • Use a Kanban system may work for some.
  • If you find focus is your problem, use the 25 minutes Pomodoro technique or 90+30 minutes time blocking suggested by Tony Schwartz.
  • Some may prefer little and often idea to do things; while others may prefer extended chunk of time to get them to do things.

There are those who may not need Gear #1 and #2, yet strong in execution. But for us, mere mortals, planning and processing things could eventually help you engage in doing things.

Productivity Survey: Help Me, Help You!

Participate in my productivity survey, to help me help you!

Share with me your productivity behaviors and challenges.

In return, I will share with you interesting ideas and high-quality resources that would specifically address your particular situation. Yes, a personal productivity treatise!

It wouldn’t take more than 2 minutes.

Now, take the survey!


  • Name
  • Email id (for google hangout)
  • Age
  •  Profession
  • What is 2 most productivity challenge you are currently facing?
  • What is stopping you from getting your things done?
  • Do you currently use a productivity system? No, Pen & Paper, To-do list, Calendar, GTD, Planner, Others (specify)?
  • Time slot

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