Deep Work – Cal Newport
What we choose to focus on and what we choose to ignore—plays in defining the quality of our life
If you service low-impact activities, therefore, you’re taking away time you could be spending on higher-impact activities. It’s a zero-sum game
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Methods of Deep Work
There are 4 different methods for Deep Work –
- Monastic Deep Work
- Bimodal Deep Work
- Rhythmic Deep Work
- Journalistic Deep Work
Here you leave everything and go to somewhere you are disconnected from the world – live like a monk to focus only on one thing. (It is not always possible for everyone.)
In 1970, Bill Gates isolated himself from the world for 8 weeks, during which he created the first version of Microsoft, which has become a multi-billion dollar company right now.
Bimodal Deep Work
This type of Deep work is for those who are not able to follow the Monastic Approach.
Here, when you need to perform Deep work you go to a separate place (which must be a different place from where you spend most of your time) and do your work for 12-72 hours (not continuous!) and then come back to your regular life and repeat it until you have finished the work.
J K Rowling finished the last book of the Harry Potter series (Deathly Hallows) in a Hotel. She just went to that Hotel for writing the book.
Rhythmic Deep Work
In this type of Deep work, you block a specific time each day in your calendar to perform Deep Work. At first, it may be 1-1.5 hours, but when you start to do it regularly you can stretch it to 4 hours.
If possible, try to schedule your time for early in the morning because if you complete your main task before doing anything else, then it will give you a confidence boost and also many people feel energetic in the morning.
Journalistic Deep Work
Here you just work like a journalist – whenever any incident occurs you have to go. That means here, you perform deep work whenever you get free time.
Here you are free to do deep work at any time. You can start doing Deep work by this method then you can convert it to the Rhythmic approach.
If you don’t produce, you won’t thrive—no matter how skilled or talented you are.
Deep Work Strategies
- Decide What is Deep Work for You: Which Task do You Want to in ‘Deep work’ mode.
- Schedule Distractions: In your calendar set the times when you will check your phone or other distractions.
- Deep Work Ritual: Make deep work your daily habit. Keep a fixed time when you will do deep work.
- Evening Shut Down: In the evening plan your next day and write everything down that needs to do next (from your mind) and say “Shut Down Complete”. Then detach from your work and enjoy the time with your loved one and have a good night’s sleep.
The Core Abilities for Thriving in New Economy
The ability to quickly master new things.
The ability to produce at an elite level term in both quality and speed.
For both of these abilities, you have to do Deep Work.
Social Media Detox
Just try it as an experiment –
Quit all social media (e.g. Twitter, FB, Snapchat, Instagram) for 30 days.
Don’t tell anyone that you are doing it.
After 30 days ask yourself these 2 questions –
Would the last 30 days have been notably better if I had been able to use those services?
Did people care that I wasn’t using this service?
If any of the answers is ‘NO’ then quitting that service is good for you.
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Who you are, what you think, feel, and do, what you love—is the sum of what you focus on.