BiggerPockets Real Estate Podcast

BiggerPockets Podcast 117: Maximizing Productivity to Get Things Done with David Allen

406 Articles Written

Real estate entrepreneurs are busy people… but this doesn't have to mean getting overwhelmed! In this episode of the BiggerPockets Podcast, we sit down with world-famous productivity author David Allen to learn tips and tricks for getting more things done in your life. You’ll learn how to accomplish more things, in less time, with less stress using the Getting Things Done (GTD) system. This show will inspire and encourage you to do even more in your business.

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Whether you’re just starting out as an entrepreneur, or you just want to run your business more effectively and seamlessly, you’ll definitely get something valuable out of this episode!

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This Show Sponsored By

We just waRealtySharesnted to give a shout out to our podcast sponsor on today’s show: RealtyShares. RealtyShares is a crowdfunding platform that allows you to invest in professionally managed properties without leaving your living room!

Learn more by visiting!

In This Episode We Cover:

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  • David Allen’s backstory
  • The two elements of self management you should know
  • What hats you should learn to wear
  • Areas in life you need to make sure you’re keeping an eye on
  • How to keep yourself oriented in the right direction
  • What exactly an “external brain” is and how to build it
  • What you need to know about Getting Things Done
  • Important notes on research and development
  • The 5 steps of the GTD system
  • The big question: What is the next actionable step?
  • The ins and outs of the 2-minute rule
  • The importance of making a mess
  • And SO much more!

Books Mentioned in this Show

Tweetable Topics:

  • “You need to make sure you have the map, but you’ve got to have a good map with all the right data on it.” (Tweet This!)
  • “It’s terrible to go play soccer without a goal.” (Tweet This!)
  • “If you can take the action step in two minutes or less, do it right then.” (Tweet This!)
  • “You’re going to learn more doing it than reading a book.” (Tweet This!)
  • “The core key in getting in control and focused is the weekly review.” (Tweet This!)
  • “If you don’t spend any time on reviewing, you will just go fumble around and be driven by the latest and loudest.” (Tweet This!)
  • “You’re most creative when you have a space to make a mess.” (Tweet This!)
  • “Your head is for having ideas, not for holding them.” (Tweet This!)

Connect with David

Real strategies that work for real people seeking to build wealth through real estate investments. Co-hosted by Brandon Turner and David Greene, this podcast provides actionable advice from investo...
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    Sohrab Khosravi Lender from Houston, Texas
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Very good show, but too short.
    Joshua Dorkin BiggerPockets Founder from Denver, CO
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Thanks Sohrab – We wish we had more time with David as well.
    Deshan Kennedy Real Estate Agent from Fredericksburg, VA
    Replied over 5 years ago
    David, what a great show! Even though it wasn’t directly related to real estate, GTD plays a major role in our daily lives. Thank you Josh and Brandon for bringing David onto the podcast. Short but packed a full punch for the listeners to take into their daily life. Maybe BP should have one non-real estate related podcast per month that would help our daily activities which will then help our real estate business.
    Joshua Dorkin BiggerPockets Founder from Denver, CO
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Thanks for the feedback, Deshan. We’re trying to bring in some non-real estate people like David who we believe can help improve our members’ lives and businesses. I’m not sure if we’ll get one per month, but count on more shows like this when we can make it happen.
    Rob Fraser from Oceanside, California
    Replied over 5 years ago
    I really loved the show. I went through the process of “brain dumping” and another thing I was compelled to do was catch up (and delete) all my old emails. I actually got a little sick to my stomach, however after I was done I felt great! It’s like when you clean out the files on your computer and it runs so much faster. Again I got so much from the show today and thank you for sharing! Also I am not a real estate investor (yet) but I do online marketing for a couple of investors and this content really helps me sound like I know what I’m talking about when it comes to real estate =) I recommend Bigger Pockets to everyone (who wants bigger pockets) Rob Fraser
    Account Closed from Watkins Glen, New York
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Very useful podcast! I read The Organized Mind and implemented some the author’s suggestions, but David’s ideas really take the research and make a user-friendly system. His system works because it capitalizes on freeing our brains to be creative and action oriented. I especially need to apply the weekly review technique. Thank you for introducing me to David Allen’s Getting Things Done!
    Skyler Smith Real Estate Agent from Logan, UT
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Loved it! Listened twice already. He has a way with teaching
    Kim Handelman Real Estate Agent from Guilford, CT
    Replied over 5 years ago
    READ THIS BOOK! I can honestly say GTD changed my life. Both my husband and I read the book in January. We researched software that was crafted after David Allen’s book and I am a different person today. I’m a designer, mom and RE investor not to mention very active in our school’s PTO, community etc. But now I’m actually getting things done in all those areas instead of just grabbing at random balls in the air trying not to let any of them fall. I can think clearly and actually focus on one thing at a time knowing everything else is where I can find it and retrieve it when needed. I have become more creative in my design business and more effective in every part of my life. Every morning I look at my “Home Page” which has my calendar, projects and tasks (all ordered in priority) and I’m good to go. THANK YOU JOSH AND BRANDON for bringing David on. This is one book everyone should run out and buy (get the paper copy because you’ll be going back to chapters when implementing – too hard to do digitally). One last note, to any of you who read the book previously, did you find his voice didn’t match the image of who you thought he was? That really threw me. OOps – my phone just pinged reminding me I have an appointment – LOVE THIS STUFF!
    George Bittar Investor from Parsippany, New Jersey
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Hi Kim, what software or app are you using? I can’t do anything on paper these days and would love to implement these systems electronically on a mobile device.
    Gavin Peacock Investor from Portland, Oregon
    Replied over 5 years ago
    That was a great podcast! David has a natural ability to say exactly the right thing in every situation. I really enjoyed Josh and Brandon’s interaction on this one, as all three chaps were on exactly the same wavelength. I shall listen to this one again, and I’ve already bought the new addition of GTD! Brilliant stuff!
    Gavin Peacock Investor from Portland, Oregon
    Replied over 5 years ago
    **edition** (whoops!)
    Andrew Syrios Residential Real Estate Investor from Kansas City, MO
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Great interview! I’ve been using GTD for over a year now and it has worked fantastically. I give it my highest recommendation.
    Darren Sager Investor from Summit, NJ
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Great Podcast guys! Wish there was more meat on the bone with this however I guess I’ll find it out when I read the book!
    Ronald Perich Investor from Granite City, Illinois
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Every time I go near a Goodwill store, I go in to look for books. I always find two or three worth my time. I couldn’t believe my good fortune when Allen’s book was on the shelf… for $.50! Started reading it today and putting it to use. My dump is complete and everything is to my “IN” basket. Felt great to see ZERO displayed on my Outlook Inbox. Now, I still have to work through some of the other stuff, but what a difference already.
    Anna Watkins Investor from Atlanta, Georgia
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Great show — I’m especially guilty of distraction by the “latest and loudest” (often it’s also the easiest) and am inspired to buckle down to GTD. I’ve gotten to the ‘brain dump’ before, and now I look at the list and, um, nothing’s done. And I’m overwhelmed. Brandon’s Sunday evening review sounds like something I could build into my life — check with me next Monday and see how I’ve done!
    Account Closed Investor from Dunnellon, Florida
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Great Show! Inspired me to WRITE DOWN everything in my mind. The first night I did this, I fell asleep with the pen in my hand. It was all out of my mind and I was able to just rest. It was LOVELY! Thank You, David Allen. Thank You, BP.
    Erika Carter Residential Real Estate Broker from Chicago, IL
    Replied almost 5 years ago
    Great episode!! Thank you!
    Roger Alcott from Natick, Massachusetts
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Great topic, this should be taught in school, not just learned in life. Thanks.