Here are some quotes from the book: Perman, Matthew Aaron. How to Get Unstuck: Breaking Free from Barriers to Your Productivity. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2018.
God is at the center of our productivity and gives us the power and direction to do the right things in the right way and for the right reasons.
The key to time management at the end of the day is simple: you need to know where you are going, and you need to focus on the things that will get you there.
John Piper sums up the biblical meaning of freedom in this fullest sense, of being free “indeed,” that Jesus and Paul are speaking of: “You are fully free—completely free, free indeed—when you have the desire, the ability, and the opportunity to do what will make you happy in a thousand years. Or we could say, You are fully free when you have the desire, the ability, and the opportunity to do what will leave you no regrets forever.”
J. Gresham Machen said about the use of the intellect: “No conversion was ever wrought by argument. A change of heart is also necessary. . . . But because intellectual labor is insufficient it does not follow, as is so often assumed, that it is unnecessary.”4
Christian philosopher Ronald Nash says a worldview is “a conceptual scheme that contains our fundamental beliefs; it is also the means by which we interpret and judge reality.” He goes on: “Worldviews function much like eyeglasses. The right eyeglasses can put the world into clearer focus, and the correct worldview can do something similar.”4 Nash summarizes well that there are five clusters of beliefs in any worldview: God, metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, and human nature. Our view of history could be added to this as well.
Covey says, “I submit that if we focus our attention on techniques, on specific practices, on ‘to do’ lists, on present pressures, we might make some small improvements. But if we want to move ahead in a major way, we need to shift our paradigm and see the situation in a totally new way.”8
As Dwight Eisenhower once said, “In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable.”
Money is not the scarcest resource. As Drucker pointed out years ago (and it has only increased since then), “Of the other major resources, money is actually quite plentiful. And when it comes to people, while it is hard to find enough good people, you can hire and train more people.” But you cannot get more time. You cannot rent more of it, hire more of it, or in any other way obtain more of it. Time is the scarcest resource—not people and not money. And therefore “nothing else, perhaps, distinguishes effective executives as much as their tender loving care of time.”
King talks not only about how to write well, but also how to make the writing process work well for you. Regarding his own schedule, he writes, “My own schedule is pretty clear-cut. Mornings belong to whatever is new—the current composition. Afternoons are for naps and letters. Evenings are for reading, family, Red Sox games on TV, and any revisions that just cannot wait. Basically, mornings are my prime writing time.”19 That’s creative work first, reactive work second. And note that there is plenty of time left over for the reactive work, which does matter (and can be very energizing).
Ephesians 5:7–17 teaches us that God does not typically whisper from heaven what decision we should make. He wants us to choose because that requires the growth of wisdom, maturity, and conscience.