I’m a big fan of time management and getting things done. I like—crave—productivity. Books like Deep Work and Essentialism are on my “Must Read” list. Both were life-changing books for me. (I read Deep Work every year.) This week. I’m adding Four Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals by Oliver Burkeman to that list.
I’d been aware of the book for some time but never gotten around to buying it. Last week, I was idly browsing Waterstones while waiting for Wife to complete Important Shopping when the book leapt out and had at me.
I bought it and started reading it later that day. It’s brilliant.
Unfortunately, I started reading it without a pencil clutched in my hand. (Normally, I underline things and make notes in the margin and so on.) I got absorbed and didn’t realise this for about 50 pages. By then, it was too late, and I wasn’t going to start again. So, I’ve now finished my first read-through and am planning to go back and read it “properly” in a couple of weeks or so.
Four Thousand Weeks does not contain hints and tips about how to crush your morning or design a perfect work routine. It poses deeper, more fundamental questions and encourages the reader to question the “ultimate time management problem”: how best to use their finite time.
The book is brilliant. If you feel overwhelmed by your task lists or like you barely keep your head above water, I recommend this book. If you are productive, I recommend this book. If you are unproductive, I recommend this book.
In short, I highly recommend this book.
I can’t wait to read Four Thousand Weeks again. And this time, I’m going to do it properly.