Distraction is on the verge of becoming an epidemic. Walk into a Starbucks that’s near a high school and you’ll see teenagers texting each other from across the table and putting more effort into a perfect selfie than they do in communicating with each other. As a result, deep work gives anyone who can cultivate the skill a significant competitive advantage.
1. It results in high-value creative output
Books don’t get written and companies don’t get built by checking your email or updating your status on Facebook. Nobody ever changed the world by checking email. Significant creative accomplishments require focus, consistency, good habits and deep work.
Deep work is ultimately what results in high-value creative output. Whether you’re writing a book, building the next great app, or making an iconic film, it requires deep work.
2. It Improves your Ability to Focus
Deep work is like a muscle which it means it must be built.
As you do more deep work, your ability to focus on a cognitively demanding task for an extended period of time will increase. You’ll go from being able to do an hour of deep work to 3–4 hours of it each day.
3. It makes You More Efficient
As I’ve said before deep work allows you get more done in less time. Anytime I start my day with deep work and something that adds meaning or value to my life, my creative output increases significantly. I hack flow states more easily and my days are more fulfilling. With deep work, everything on your to-do list gets done effortlessly
3. Deep Work Makes You Happier
Sources of distraction have done a pretty good job of making us miserable. They cause us to spend a lot of time comparing our lives the highlight reels of everyone else’s lives. When we do deep work, we compare less and create more. As a result, we’re happier and according to many happiness researchers, we perform better when we’re happier.
4. Deep Work Creates Momentum
As you spend more time doing deep work, you’ll start to pick up momentum. You tap into the power of success accelerants and achieve goals faster. In his book Before Happiness, Shawn Anchor said, “your brain makes progress towards a goal based how close it thinks it is to that goal.” If you’ve ever done something like write a book or finish a 45,000-word manuscript, you’ll notice that things go much faster later in the process.
As Cal Newport has said, deep work is a 21st-century superpower. With so many sources of distraction, it’s becoming more rare and much more valuable. As a result, it gives you a significant competitive advantage.