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Summary of Deep Work 

What’s inside

Discover the concept of deep work and why it’s increasingly valuable in the current state of the economy. Start crafting your way into a meaningful and successful life.

Key points


Deep work is becoming rare by the day

The deep work hypothesis states that this skill is getting rarer and therefore increasingly valuable in our economy. Those who cultivate this skill will become irreplaceable.

Deep work is scarce. Why?

Well, shallow work is a lot easier, and the business is spurring it. Even large conglomerates are not left out. Facebook, for instance, wants to launch the most extensive open floor plan in the world. More than three thousand employees will be working on movable furniture spread in an over 10-acre expanse of office space.

This stimulates constant connectivity and fast response times, encouraging employees to choose the path of least resistance. This is a shallow work-induced environment, where the employees work in a superficial manner.

The principles of least resistance state that employees will always choose shortcuts if spared clear feedback on the effect of different behaviors reduced to the ultimate point.
"If you don't produce, you won't thrive — no matter how skilled or talented you are." ~ Cal Newport
According to the author, most workers engage in visible "busyness" or "busyness as a proxy for productivity." As many do not know what it means and how to become valuable at work, they indulge in several industrial productivity indicators — doing things in a visible manner.

It is hard to engage in deep work, while in the absence of clear goals, most employees arm themselves with self-preserving shallow work.
Deep work is valuable because it maximizes the amount of productivity you can obtain from a certain period.
Deep work entails single-tasking, no distractions in a state of intense focus for a while. As a result, you boost your performance and productivity. Studies have found that multitasking makes people less productive and that focusing on a single task at a time maximizes effectual output. When there is no distraction, you will get more things done in less time. It translates to the more focused you are, the better your productivity. And working for a while in this undistracted state has to do with attention residue. This will be discussed in the next chapter.

Now that you have read about the importance of deep work, the dearth of this reality portends bad news for businesses today. They will miss out on a concrete way to optimize production. On the other hand, this is good news for you as an individual. The lack of deep work uncovers a great personal advantage.

If this trend continues, deep work will keep increasing in value; therefore, you can use the information in this book to develop your ability to perform deep work and reap bountiful rewards.

Deep work and why it is valuable

According to the author, deep work is any professional activity carried out in a distraction-free state, which allows an individual to use their cognitive capabilities to the maximum. On the other hand, work can be shallow. It comes as non-cognitive demanding tasks, often carried out while distracted. Shallow work does not add much value, and it's easy to replicate.
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Other chapters is waiting for you in the app

What is attention residue?


The rules of deep work


How to use routines to ritualize deep work


The value of systematic idleness



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You’ll learn

Why social media is a real bottleneck
Deep work vs. shallow work
About the Great Restructuring period
The law of productivity
Deep work approaches

What is Deep Work about?

Who should read Deep Work

Topics in Deep Work