43 Folders and Merlin Mann's Makeover

merlinmann.jpgI'm a fan of Merlin Mann, the author of the well-known 43 Folders blog and someone who's (very, very) frequently referred to as a "productivity guru," although he rejects that label. He and his blog have often inspired me as I'm searching for new insights about productivity, both in life and in the workplace.

Which is why it threw me just a bit to see that after four years of 43 Folders, he's going in a new direction. As he wrote:

Friends, I'm done with "productivity" as a personal fetish or hobby. There are countless sites that are all too happy to vend stroke material for your joyless addiction to puns about procrastination and systems for generating more taxonomically satisfying meta-work. But, presently, you won't find so much of that here.
Done with productivity? Say it isn't so!

Luckily, that's not quite the case.

From now on, says Mann, he's going to focus on "how people make stuff" and how they can clear space (figuratively and literally) to be creative and to finish things they care about.

What's cool about this new approach is that it's still productivity -- but it's real-world, applied productivity rather than endless analysis over how to best label your filing cabinets. It's about finishing that project and getting things done in the most basic sense of the phrase.

As the new About page of 43 Folders says:

43 Folders is focused on an arc about how to improve the quality of your career and life by managing your attention in a way that allows you to work your ass off on the creative projects that matter most to you.
And who can't use a little more of that?

If you haven't visited 43 Folders yet, check it out. And if you have, you might consider using Mann's reboot to revisit your own productivity philosophy. I did.

(image of Merlin Mann by Graham Ballantyne via Flickr, CC 2.0)