At some point of time or other, we all forget important work and get distracted while working. These issues regularly bother some professionals. Forgetting important work and not being able to focus on tasks at hand can decrease your productivity level. A graduate student Bluma Zeigarnik observed in the 1920s that the waiters are exceptionally good at remembering the orders of multiple clients but after serving they forget what who had ordered.


From this observation, the talented student drew a theory that unfinished work uses the power of our brain and occupies a big space inside our minds. This effect of unfinished work on our mind and its distracting capability is known as Zeigarnik effect. To counter this effect David Allen created Getting Things Done or GTD technique.

The unfinished works are seen as distracters or open loops that decrease our mental ability and stops us from focusing. They easily divert our mind to the works which we have not completed. GTD helps in bringing this kind of situation under control. By utilizing this technique, you may not be able to finish all your tasks within time but your productivity will definitely increase. The first step for utilizing the GTD technique successfully is to collect all the open loops or making a list of unfinished work.


You can do this in any manner that seems plausible and convenient to you. Use simple paper or pen, Dictaphone, a note-taking app like Evernote or email them to yourself. You must get all your small and big tasks listed and out of your mind. The collection buckets full of to-do list must be emptied regularly.

The more work you get done the better will be your concentration level. Not all the work listed in your collection baskets may need direct laboring. For example, you may have a huge list of unread emails. Read them and decide if you really have to take an action or not. Tick off the work that you don’t have to do. Finish lists of work methodically and serially. The work that needs your attention or labor should be categorized based on priority. Organizing your work and categorizing them will help you complete tasks faster.


Getting Things Done is a nice strategy for the busy professionals and it has the potential of helping any individual who wants to enhance his or her productivity.