Deep work, the solution to limitless productivity
Before I begin this story, let me clarify that I have not done deep work much yet, it is still a concept I have been trying out this month and the previous one, but I can’t help but think about what it would feel like if I had unlocked my full concentration to reach new heights in the academic system, hence this article expressing my thoughts on it.
Work is something I always have trouble with. Whether it’s with being a lazy bum and procrastinating, or not having enough time left to complete it, it’s always a hassle when I take up new tasks. Often times, I take more work than I can handle, which in turn overwhelms me, rendering me distracted and nervous.
However, when I was searching across the web for a good read, the book Deep Work by Cal Newport stood out to me. It seemed like the perfect book, being talked about by some good self improvement YouTubers. It received such praise that I considered reading it, and after going 155 pages into the book, which is about half way into it, I can attest to the fact that indeed, the book Deep Work is one among the greatest among the advice books out there up with HTWFAIP by Dale Carnegie. I have still have about another hundred pages left, so expect a book recap/review on it in another month.
This book is about a new type of work, that explores how the rich and successful output work whose quality far exceeds ours. Not only making a case study of them in his book, Cal also breaks down the fundamentals in what they do, and telling you how to do it as well. So, want to become rich and famous? Read now.
The basic gist of deep work is this:
You lock yourself in a room with no food or water, with a laptop or a book. DO NOT GO out of the room until you are done with the task. Pour your entire mental fortitude into getting that thing done, and lo, a task which would’ve taken you about 2 hours to have finished, would’ve took you about 1 now. I know it sounds simple, but how long can you really keep your attention on one thing?
In this world, we are constantly distracted by everything. The noise outside, your mom calling you, or the occasional buzz of the phone, they all split your attention into piece, making you unable to work for long. When you’re working, unwanted thoughts will enter your brain if you are not focused enough, and you might think that it only lasts for a few minutes, but science shows that once your phone received a notification, your attention is then diverted into something else, so best keep your phone outside of your office.
When you get into deep work, you must understand that the quality of the output of your work depends on two things: The time you spend on it and the intensity of your focus. When you’re distracted, you output shallow work; which means you’re either not focused and are spending excess amount of time to achieve the same results that deep work would have given you in half the time. Economical, isn’t it?
So, if I were to help you get into deep work, the main things I would tell you to do is:
1)Organize large chunks of time, preferably one and a half hours, to complete ONE specific task.
2)Remove ALL distractions. Work in complete isolation.
3)Meditate before you get to work. I have found that meditating for 10 minutes is the ideal time for me, at least.
I have been working deep for about one month now. It’s pretty hard to keep my focus on one thing for a long time, since I am used to being so distracted while I study that I have to read the same thing over and over, wasting so much time. I guess what I do is not deep work entirely, but it’s a mix..? Not sure anyway. To do deep work in my case, I still have a long way to go, but to get finished, you gotta get started, am I right?
I wish I could write more about deep work in this article, but it would leave just too little for the review, unfortunately. Writer problems. Anyway, hope you enjoyed reading this short article that I had to rush on to meet my monthly output of articles. I will try ASAP to get the much longer and more useful recap out when I am satisfied with my work. Till then, good bye, my dear readers.
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