Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less


Title: Essentialism:-The-Disciplined-Pursuit-of-Less
Authors: Greg Mckeown
Edition: 1
Finished Date: 2017-04-28
Rating: 3
Language: English
Genres: Productivity
Level: Entry
Publishers: Currency
Publication Date: 2014-04-15
ISBN: 978-0804137386
Format: ePub
Pages: 272
Download: ePub

我过去听Asian Efficiency 的podcast, 有太多嘉宾推荐essentialism. 晚上看nvalt的时候有写, 我就看了下amazon上最低的review

我希望能从这本书上看到非常具体的决定是否essential的标准. review上写, 没有. 书中的建议还是大路货

我最大的收获是拒绝掉90%的事情. 应用: 觉得书里的大部分内容没有实际操作价值. 我最缺少的是deep work. 即使一个人很忙, 同时有多个projects在手, 只要有足够多的时间做deep work, 那么就能完成这些projects.

其实pick one thing的想法也是贪. 想做一个事情就能做到最好. 尤其用成功人士举例子, 有了幸存者偏差bias. 许多用些方法但是最后没有成功的人,写书的人不知道罢了

在execute section只讲routine, 不重点提到deep work和deliberate practice,已经deliberate practice如何操作,都是由逻辑错误.
但会有隐含, 比如: do the most difficult thing first. 脑力工作者最difficult的工作必然需要deep work才能完成.

只有routine,但没有deep work就像我天天把刷牙洗脸放在OmniFocus一样, 不会对所谓最重要的事情产生影响.


刚才看到他说每次做事前都问自己这是我应该做的嘛? 过去,甚至现在,我也一直会问,这给我产生了极大精神压力,反而没法坚持做事情.我放弃这本书,即使别人一直在推荐.


我看了评论,此书不像getting things done,是本practical book.我还是不需要花费时间上去了

我过去经验表明,看这种high level的思想史没有用,尤其是很多人都repeat,但是没人或者只有少数人会给出practical plan.

amazon上反对这本书的话 Awesome

This book’s ideas are mostly a rehash of time management books’ ideas, from authors such as Brian Tracey, Covey family, and Julie Morgenstein–authors with superior methodologies and better research. The book’s usage of “essentialism” is similar to “lean and mean”. Why create a definition for another unnecessary term?

As examples, book’s theme is “Less but better is a principle whose time has come.” Yet, military has known this since man’s existence–just look at military backpacks. Lean and mean is also such principle–been around for centuries. Author’s Stanford Business School (mentioned excessively) experience teaches essentials in design development, apparently as novel. Yet, there is an old advertising saying–the more a client pays, the less he gets. Essentialism in design has been around for centuries. Chapters on sleep, play, and escape; yet none on exercise or family?–blog style writing that’s incomplete analysis.

Also, as book redefines “essentialism”, it needs to redefine accurately. For example, Henry Ford, in above, apparently thought that color is non-essential. The book’s “essentialist” reply probably will then be that Henry Ford didn’t understand the marketing essentials involved. In other wording, whatever didn’t work was missing an “essential”. Such essentialism defining then becomes meaningless.

The book’s biggest positive is that it gives a singular catchy name to a practice, and such “essentialism” name is shorter than “lean and mean”, perhaps more prescriptive than “focus,” and sounds better than “efficiencyism.” So one has to give credit to the text for having picked a good, useful mantra.


The key word to lifestyle, in my opinion, is balance (or harmony), as in John Wooden’s balance, Plato’s harmony, or even Buddhism stilling of desires to attain harmony. Essentialism creates time, but balance manages the essentials. A balanced, essentials SW Air thrived. An imbalanced, essentials Laker’s Airways bankrupted.