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Do More Better: A Practical Guide to Productivity

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  2,897 ratings  ·  526 reviews
Don’t try to do it all. Do more good. Better.

I am no productivity guru. I am a writer, a church leader, a husband, and a father—a Christian with a lot of responsibilities and with new tasks coming at me all the time.

I wrote this short, fast-paced, practical guide to productivity to share what I have learned about getting things done in today’s digital world. Whether yo
Kindle Edition, 104 pages
Published November 27th 2015 by Challies
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crashqueen73 A calendar (eg google calendar) for events meetings and appointments. A task management tool (eg todoist) for tasks and projects and a tool for inform…moreA calendar (eg google calendar) for events meetings and appointments. A task management tool (eg todoist) for tasks and projects and a tool for information management (eg evernote).(less)

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Douglas Wilson
Jan 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Very fine book. Very helpful.
David Steele
Nov 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Here’s a lofty claim: “I believe this book can improve your life.” This is a claim we’ve all heard before. Infomercials, hucksters, and television preachers make similar claims. The net result is generally less than satisfying. The consumer usually walks away from such a claim with a lighter wallet, a bruised ego, and more skepticism to boot.

Tim Challies is hedging his bets in his new book, Do More Better: A Practical Guide to Productivity. He believes that lives will be changed if readers will
Keren Threlfall
"Do More Better" by Tim Challies is a practical introduction to personal productivity. Specifically, Challies delivers a productivity guide to organizing life and setting up systems in the online world. His advice is applicable to the stay-at-home mom to the pastor to the young entrepreneur building an online business. (As a counterpoint, these are probably not productivity tips that the Luddite, blue-collar worker, or offline elderly person could use.)

On the productivity side, the book was stel
Jan 05, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book didn't have much useful information for me. I can see how it would greatly benefit someone who has frequent appointments, receives dozens of emails every day, has a demanding career, etc. I'm a stay-at-home mom with few tasks to do outside of the home; my at-home tasks are routine and obvious enough that I don't need an electronic system to remind myself to do them.

What benefited me the most in this book was in chapter 2 under "Productivity Thieves". I haven't considered myself to be
Tom Sussex
May 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
In my quest to become a "productive" person, this book has been helpful in reminding me why I should want to become productive anyway. A book centered on God's glory and delivered in a very practical way! ...more
Aug 29, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is exactly as advertised, a immensely practical guide to productivity. It gives app ideas, teaches how to use them, and is an overall motivator for organization and systems to help us to do more better. I grabbed some good tips!
Jami Balmet
A short, sweet, and to the point book on productivity! Challies gives a great look into how he organizes his time, keeps tracks of projects and to do lists, and most importantly: doing this all for God's glory! A terrific mix of practical application and thought provoking theology. I listened to it as an audio book and can't wait to get my physical copy for reference. ...more
Bambi Moore
Feb 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
I loved the opening chapters on the theology of productivity. I doubt I will ever invest the time learning to use the apps he recommends. But it has inspired me to re-examine my priorities and pull out my categorized spiral notebooks again 😬 to plan special times with family/church and keep writing topics from dropping off the edges of my brain.
Rachelle Cobb
Jan 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audiobook
Nothing like what I expected! I didn’t realize he comes at productivity from a Christian perspective. But I actually enjoyed the introductory concept chapters where he talks about that (but I wasn’t expecting it so I can sorta see how the one-star reviewers feel blindsided by this). 

You would probably think this book is a waste of time if you have your own productivity system (say, bullet journaling). Tim’s main purpose for this book is to walk thru his own system. I LOVED it and will be think ...more
Dec 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: challies-2017
It seemed appropriate to read a book by Mr. Challies to satisfy one of the Challies Reading Challenge categories. This was a short audio book (just under 3 hours) from hoopla, and I do wish I had read a print copy and taken notes. Although sometimes his methods seemed complicated, they probably aren't. His enthusiasm was contagious. I wanted to get the software, get myself organized, and get going! Follow-through is always my problem, and he was pretty blunt that being organized and productive t ...more
Mike Collins
Oct 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I’ve read a decent amount on the subject of productivity, but Do More Better has two outstanding qualities that have made it my favorite book on the subject. First, it’s downright practical. He literally lists step-by-step how to use different apps as part of your time management system. His suggestions are current for people who don’t live by a paper planner. Second, this book has a theological depth like few other books I’ve read on productivity. Charlie’s doesn’t just want his readers to do m ...more
Ben Robin
Aug 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Spectacularly helpful. My current plan is to follow what Challies lays out closely and begin to adapt to my own life and circumstances slowly and slightly. I had been doing some of what he said, but it was mostly only in my head and reactionary. This book offered me a chance to really think about how to get things done in a way that glorifies God and focuses on doing good for others.
Aaron Matthews
Dec 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Tim Casteel
Dec 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I give 5 stars to books that are life changing.
At first, I was thinking this would be more of a 3 star book. More like an extended blog post than a book.

But lets be honest, I wouldn't take the time to read a series of blog posts on productivity. That's the beauty of books. Books force you to slow down and consider - to think deeply on one topic.

And because this book is so incredibly practical, I feel like it will actually change my life more than other, better productivity books like Essentialis
Keenan Casteel
Oct 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The topic of leadership/productivity seems to have taken on new life recently. With entrepreneurs, CEO's, "thought gurus", whatever those are, all writing on the matter. I have taken in numerous amounts of "leadership" content in the last several years through books, podcasts, and talks given online and in person. Most of that was regurgitated mambo-jumbo. This isn't. It's practical and easy to implement. Most importantly, Tim approaches productivity from a theological perspective and helps the ...more
Ryan Boomershine
Challies is a real gift to the church. Heed this thoughtful book.

You may stumble with the electronic systems he tries to employ, but they are spot on. I use each of them but don't use them well enough. This was a good kick in the pants help to me.

Certainly the value lies in the principles and this book is chock full of wise insight about shepherding time, gifts and resources. There's no good reason not to read this book this year. [Yes, I'm talking to you.]
Jan 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017
A short and quick practical guide on getting our lives to be more productive, with a heart of wanting to steward our time and resources for the glory of God. A bit intimidating, as it will require one to review and follow his recommendations and processes for greater productivity carefully and intentionally, which I am planning to do, though I am dreading the process and want just the product :). Tips on managing email was also really helpful at the end.
David West
Apr 01, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Read once, listened twice. I just finished that second time through the audiobook. Very practical and helpful. Organization doesn't come naturally to me and Challies makes it simple.

Last date read: 1/2016
Listened last: 10/18
Read again 1.12.20
Helpful, overall. I'm not going to take the plunge and learn all of the technology that Challies uses, but I'd like to learn to use Evernote. This book is probably most helpful for those who need help with organization. Several typos, and cheap binding. A review by Doug Wilson, and a review by Andy Naselli. Related post here.

5: the point isn't necessarily to do more—the point is to do what you do better (and maybe then you can do more)

Ch. 1: Know Your Purpose
10ff.: productivity catec
Ryan Hawkins
Jun 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this at the beginning of 2017 and implemented much of its advice. But in three years, I have gotten lazier with the system, so I decided to read it again. And I’m glad I did. Knowing what was coming, it wasn’t as “new” this time, but it was even better. I was able to appreciate from first hand experience his points. And it was great to be reminded again not only of the system, but of the reason behind the system, namely, glorifying God by doing good to others.

I totally recommend this book
Nathan Mckinney
Apr 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is by far the best book I have read on productivity. First of all, I love the way he defines productivity ("effectively stewarding your gifts, talents, time, energy and enthusiasm for the good of others and the glory of God"). Second I love that the book is both philosophical and practical. He lays out a system that can be used with any number of productivity tools and methods, but also takes the time to share about specific tools and how he personally uses them to become more productive in ...more
David Schultz
Jan 31, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Challies effectively guides you in the pursuit of productivity by discussing the biblical reason for getting things done along with presenting a very practical system that has worked well in my experience. This book was very similar to What's Best Next by Matt Perman, but Perman's discussion is more in depth if I remember correctly. If you want a quicker read go with Challies, but they are both great. ...more
Jan 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
concise and practical

It a really good book on productivity.
It starts with a few chapters on motivation and the reason for being productive. Then it moves forward with tools suggestions and with concrete examples how to organize yourself. I really enjoyed the idea of grouping your tasks based on your responsibilities (personal, work, church, family, whatever fits you) and then each role has multiple projects. It's a good book to get ideas how to better organize yourself to be better and more pro
Mark Donald
Apr 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
A book about how to steward your life for the good of others and the glory of God.

Challies gets incredibly practical and specific about how to accomplish this purpose for your life. He focuses on task management, calendar/scheduling, and information collection with guidance on tools and first steps to do more better. One of the most helpful encouragements for me was realizing that you can’t do everything, even really great things, so you have to plan and prioritize your own life or someone else
Samuel Kassing
Dec 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A basic book on productivity that helps you see the core motivation for productivity and how to use three simple tools in a system to execute productivity. With a word for how to maintain productivity.
Jan 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Another great book, albeit shorter, on the Biblical "why" behind productivity. If you want to get started faster in productivity practices, you can read this book as opposed to Perman's "What's Best Next."

--- Excerpts---
Productivity is effectively stewarding my gifts, talents, time, energy, and enthusiasm for the good of others and the glory of God. Now we come to it: what is productivity? Productivity is effectively stewarding your gifts, talents, time, energy, and enthusiasm for the good of o
Dec 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Read the book in 24 hours and immediately re-reading it and doing all the worksheets/setting up all the tools - love love love it and wish I had found it a decade ago!
Jonna Ventura
Sep 28, 2019 rated it liked it
Very practical and helpful.
Dec 15, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2015-reads
★ 1 1/2
This originally appeared at The Irresponsible Reader.
Abraham Lincoln reportedly said about someone's book, " People who like this sort of thing will find this the sort of thing they like." If it were chronologically possible, he might have been talking about Do More Better. I am not the person who likes this sort of thing, but I have profited from reading some productivity-improvement books -- this does not fit into that category. Could it help some people? I don't see why not, but th
David Zimmerman
Oct 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Help for the organizationally challenged

Do More Better isn't a book you read, it's a book you work through. It is a tool, or better, a toolbox of tools that you will use to take your life apart, examine all the pieces, and then put it back together again with greater functionality. Challies does a great job of guiding you through the process. The past two weeks of my life, which were busier than normal, flowed more smoothly than they have in a long time.

The strength of DMB is the step-by-step i
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VT Christian Read...: A book about Christian living 1 159 Dec 22, 2015 11:50AM  

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Tim Challies is a leading evangelical blogger and editor of Discerning Reader, a site dedicated to discerning reviews of books that are of interest to Christians. A self-employed web designer, Tim lives in the outskirts of Toronto, Ontario with his wife and three children.

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Juneteenth, observed on June 19th each year, is an American holiday commemorating the day in 1865 when the last enslaved people in Galveston,...
78 likes · 15 comments
“Productivity is effectively stewarding your gifts, talents, time, energy, and enthusiasm for the good of others and the glory of God.” 10 likes
“The simple fact is, you are not the point of your life. You are not the star of your show. If you live for yourself, your own comfort, your own glory, your own fame, you will miss out on your very purpose. God created you to bring glory to him.” 6 likes
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