I learned the term Deep Work from my older brother. He gets up every morning, exercises and listens to informational and motivational videos on how to create wealth and work more efficiently. I was impressed by his morning routine when he came to town to visit.1
He got up at about 9 am, while I got up between 6 and 8 am. My routine is somewhat similar to my brother’s. I get up, make my bed, make coffee, clean my apartment (a task I consider exercise) and begin to write. He has protein shakes in the morning, I cook eggs and salmon or something healthy.
The one thing that differs between me and my brother’s routine is that he is a bit more of a positive thinker because he listens to affirmations every day. I, during the time he came to visit me, was fairly depressed. Even though we both have our own way of doing things, it all sits under the umbrella of “non distraction,” ie Deep Work.
Our emotional states don’t keep us from staying on track when it comes to having a focused beginning of the day that makes our work schedules run smoothly. There is a level of isolation that comes with Deep Work. Weeding out distractions from social media, social conflicts, unproductive work processes and conversations is extremely important for life/work efficiency.
The term Deep Work is defined in depth in the book Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World.
When I heard the audiobook of Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World playing through the door of my guest room where my brother was I was staying, I had to knock on the door and inquire about the book. My brother explained a bit about it while he was doing jumping jacks.I felt like the book was speaking to me. I’ve always done deep work, but never realized it was such a rare way of working in the modern age.
P / P Master Class Five: Deep Work
Don’t Think of Deep Work as a Privileged Pursuit
It’s okay if you don’t have the money to rent a cabin in some remote place to focus on your novel. There are quiet rooms in most public libraries, afforded work spaces you can rent in your own city and disciplined practices like working early or late at night to avoid the hustle and bustle of your home and neighborhoods.
You don’t have to have money to find solace, but you will have to make changes and pursue it.
You can’t get away with avoiding social media so you’ll just have to discipline yourself to not check it while you are writing.
I don’t have facebook and twitter notifications linked to my phone. In fact, I am not a “cell phone person” at all. Anyone who knows me knows that. Deep Work requires pure focus for long periods of time. Train yourself not to engage with social media while you are writing.
Begin by writing for 30 minutes straight through and if you have stop, let be for a bathroom break or to cook a meal (if you write at home) or to take a walk. If you have to have a distraction let it be one that lends to your well being.
Going deep is about longevity, not just a routine.
Deep Work can be you burying your head in a project where you have a strict deadline. You can go deep for two weeks and finish your assignment, then get back to real life.
Deep Work can be a process that you dedicate yourself to for months and years to come. If you dedicate yourself, your work will become more thorough. The quality of your work will increase and your attention span will last for hours at a time.
Ask yourself, “Was the distraction worth it?”
You have to ask yourself, “Was the scrolling worth it?” Was that argument with your partner or family member productive? Was that video game, hot date, Instagram post worth the time you could have spent on fulfilling your creative and professional dreams?
Repetition is a part of Deep Work.
I became an expert in my field because of repetition. I wrote, crafted, stepped back and listened, researched and wrote again…for over a decade. I didn’t think about success, I just did the Deep Work and one day, I looked up and became an expert in the eyes of my colleagues. This encouragement only makes me work harder and want to become more efficient.