September, 2019

Date Read:

Deep Work by Cal Newport

My Notes

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Rating:

8

/10

Speed enough time in a state of frenetic shallowness and you permanently reduce your capacity to perform deep work.


To remain valuable in our economy, therefore, you must master the art of quickly learning complicated things.


If you can create something useful, its reachable audience is essentially limitless- which greatly magnifies is mediocre, then you’re in trouble, as it’s too easy for your audience to find a better alternative online.


In this new economy, three groups will have a particular advantage: those who are the best at what they do, and those with access to capital.

If you can’t learn, you can’t thrive.


By focusing intensely on a specific skill, you’re forcing the specific relevant circuit to fire, again and again, in isolation.


High quality work produced= (time spent) * (Intensity of focus).

When you switch from some Task A to another Task B, your attention doesn’t immediately follow- a residue of your attention remains stuck thinking about the original task. This residue gets especially thick if your work on Task A was unbounded and of low intensity, before you switched, but even if you finish Task A before moving on, your attention remains divided for a while.


The machine, which takes its name from the ancient Greek concept of eudaimonia (a state in which you’re achieving your full potential), turns out to be a building. “The goal of the machine,” David explained, “is to create a setting where the users can get into a state of deep human flourishing- creating work that’s at the absolute extent of their personal abilities.”


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 ability in question is called “attentional control” and it measures the subjects’ ability to maintain their focus on essential information.

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