This work resonated with me at several levels. Here are some of my key thoughts and take-aways:
- I have an inherent dislike of social media – always have. I am only on Facebook for this course. I do not tweet, use Snapchat, Instagram or anything else. This is not a value judgment. I think some people love these tools and use them well. I just find them so unsatisfying, so shallow, so full of inane content – I feel like I haven’t got time for it or interest in it.
- I wonder if some of this, and some of the ideas about Deep Work, are personality-based. We all work differently and have different approaches. My son can’t seem to concentrate without having Spotify on in the background and several screens open. I can’t work properly unless I have total silence and a single focus.
- I think we are so bombarded by information and stimuli in short bursts and snippets that we are becoming flickers and pickers and are losing a sense of depth and focus on key and core issues. It feels like we are constantly grazing on information rather than sitting down to a good and nutritious meal.
- This kind of life seems to make us restless and constantly “switched on”. I liked Newport’s thoughts on shutting down for the night, on developing rituals, on separating work and rest and play, and on how we are much more productive when we do this.
- I also know how hard this is to do. There have been too many times when an email from work has ruined my evening or plagued my weekend.
- I found Newport’s different approaches to deep work interesting. I wish I could do the few hours a day approach rather than having a season of intense work. So far, I have had bursts of very intense work rather than the daily approach. I will revisit this again. I would really like to hit a daily quota. Over time, this would be very productive.
- I struggle with the demands of others, the needs of staff and church and family. I end up doing lots of little things, shallow things in many instances, and struggle to get to the deep things. There are several tools in this book which deal with this. I think we all have much more capacity than we think, and it is amazing how some people produce so much more than others.
- I do like the scheduling idea of assigning certain tasks to certain blocks of time. I used to do this more. I want to do it again.
- Shutting down now. Shutdown complete.