Deep work: Key Takeaways.

favorite quote: “If you don’t produce, you won’t thrive—no matter how skilled or talented you are.”

let’s get started:

Deep work Book summary in 3 sentences.

Deep work is exhausting because it pushes you toward the limit of your abilities.

Schedule Every Minute of Your Day

Finish Your Work by 5:30.

The five key takeaways from Deep Work.

The key to developing a deep work habit is to move beyond good intentions and add routines and rituals to your working life designed to minimize the amount of your limited willpower necessary to transition into and maintain a state of unbroken concentration.

The implication is that once you’ve hit your deep work limit in a given day, you’ll experience diminishing rewards if you try to cram in more. Shallow work, therefore, doesn’t become dangerous until after you add enough to begin to crowd out your bounded deep efforts for the day.

Act on the Lead Measures Once you’ve identified a wildly important goal, you need to measure your success.

To put this more concretely: If every moment of potential boredom in your life—say, having to wait five minutes in line or sit alone in a restaurant until a friend arrives—is relieved with a glance at your smartphone, then your brain has likely been rewired to a point where, like the “mental wrecks” in Nass’s research, it’s not ready for deep work—even if you regularly schedule a time to practice this concentration.

This strategy picks specifically on social media because among the different network tools that can claim your time and attention, these services if used without limit, can be particularly devastating to your quest to work deeper.

(if you want to read a detailed summary of atomic habits then click here where I have covered all chapter lessons.)

Top 10 lessons from Deep work book.

  1. “Clarity about what matters provides clarity about what does not.”
  2. “what we choose to focus on and what we choose to ignore—plays in defining the quality of our life.”
  3. “As the author, Tim Ferriss once wrote: “Develop the habit of letting small bad things happen. If you don’t, you’ll never find time for the life-changing big things.”
  4. “If you can’t learn, you can’t thrive.”
  5. “To simply wait and be bored has become a novel experience in modern life, but from the perspective of concentration training, it’s incredibly valuable.”
  6. “Efforts to deepen your focus will struggle if you don’t simultaneously wean your mind from a dependence on distraction.”
  7. “Less mental clutter means more mental resources available for deep thinking.”
  8. “Human beings, it seems, are at their best when immersed deeply in something challenging.
  9. “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.”
  10. “To remain valuable in our economy, therefore, you must master the art of quickly learning complicated things. This task requires deep work. If you don’t cultivate this ability, you’re likely to fall behind as technology advances. 

Action steps From Deep work.

There is no one correct deep work ritual; the best fit is determined by both the individual and the type of project pursued. However, there are a few general questions that any effective ritual must answer:

• Where you’ll work and for how long.

Your ritual should include a location for your deep work efforts. This location can be as simple as your regular office, with the door closed and the desk cleaned (a colleague of mine likes to put a hotel-style “do not disturb” sign on his office door when he’s working on a difficult project).

• How you’ll work once you start to work.

To keep your efforts structured, your ritual requires rules and processes. For example, you could prohibit all Internet use or keep a metric like words produced per twenty-minute interval to keep your concentration sharp. Without this structure, you’ll have to mentally litigate what you should and should not be doing during these sessions and constantly assess whether you’re working hard enough. These are unnecessary drains on your reserves of willpower.

• How you’ll support your work.

Your ritual must ensure that your brain receives the support it requires to continue operating at a high level of depth.

For example, the ritual may require you to begin with a cup of good coffee, to ensure you have enough food of the right type to maintain energy or to incorporate light exercise such as walking to help keep your mind clear.

“Who you are, what you think, feel, and do, what you love—is the sum of what you focus on.”

If you want to win the war for attention, don’t try to say ‘no’ to the trivial distractions you find on the information smorgasbord; try to say ‘yes’ to the subject that arouses a terrifying longing, and let the terrifying longing crowd out everything else.

To produce at your peak level you need to work for extended periods with full concentration on a single task free from distraction. Put another way, the type of work that optimizes your performance is deep work.

Thank you for your time.

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