Plugged Pipes in The Productivity Engine

If you have a work pipeline where you just put things in but never or very rarely pull things out, it is a broken workflow that may be stopping up your whole productivity engine.

For example, I used to "star" items I wanted to follow up on in Gmail, but I never systematically tried to review those stars afterwards!  It was a "write-only" system.  Only when I linked Gmail to Outlook and started using the "tasks" view did I start systematically taking care of the backlog of hundreds of starred messages.  My friends were sometimes suprised to hear back from me about years-ago messages I never got back to them on.

Another example, that is in fact still broken for me, is my "to read" pile.  I have for years maintained a list of links and books and movies I found that I felt would be good to read or watch later.  But whenever I actually get free time to read, I always go online, perhaps on Facebook, and randomly collect a brand new link to click on.  Clearly this process is broken!  I should think about fixing it.