Mileages vary and I believe this article stems from a fundamental misunderstanding (or corporate hijack…) of what productivity was supposed to be about in the first place.
Regarding the current work conditions (not the state of the world, I am by no means comparing the world of the previous years to the current situation – just how work works for many people now, when they’re lucky enough to still have some), they have been my (writer’s) life for almost twenty years now. Scrambling to find where the money will come next. Working with the inner critic every frigging day. Being alone with myself and having to face myself everyday. Productivity has saved me by allowing me to focus my energy and work through the inner criticism to get things done at the end of the day.
It is a very weird life to be sure, unhinged, unmoored. But I would argue that many of the best outtakes of productivity are giving a structure sorely needed by many people now.
The byline of GTD is not to get more done; it’s to get things done without stress. (When you’re not stressed, you do more, but that was never the aim of GTD, as said by Allen himself repeatedly. It’s a by-product.)
It’s a writing quote but I think it’s especially relevant these days –
“Commit yourself to the process, NOT the project. Don’t be afraid to write badly, everyone does. Invest yourself in the lifestyle … NOT in the particular piece of work.” - Frank Conroy
Easier said than done, for sure, but wise words I believe. Writers just learn to show up everyday and work through the resistance they face. And that’s what productivity is about – giving you tools for your process, not focussing on universal results.
(Once again – saying that when you’re lucky enough to still have work.)