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Deep Work Thread


Cal Newport has a book called “Deep Work”. In the last 40 minutes of chapter 7 he outlines a strategy of accountability. This strategy aims to provide a mechanism that improves the execution of the deep work not just planning or theorizing deep work but actually doing the deep work.

The name of this strategy is called 4dx

The four steps boils down to.
1. Finding a wildly exciting ambitious and interesting goal to execute.
2. Identifying the lag and lead measures of each task. How to measure success effectively.
3. Creating a sense of competitiveness and accountability in the work place. Making the measurements that you are using public and therefore creating a sense of responsibility and competitiveness.
4. Frequent reviews of performance and determining how to improve results in regard to the measurements being made. I my case how many hours of extreme deep work and moderately deep work I do.

  • My top level goal is to ace JSNAD exam
  • My lead measures are house many deep work hours I am doing, both extreme deep work and moderately deep work will be measured. deep work will only be counted if it is work that is being done that is aimed directly at completing my goal.
  • My competitive inspiration I will post my daily progress in this thread everyday to create a sense of accountability and competitiveness.
  • To review and improve my work habits I will do a daily review everyday when I post in here around 9pm -10pm at night before bed.

  • And then on the 9th 19th and 29th of every month. I will evaluate my own performance for the prior 9 or 10 days.

  • The aim of these evaluations will be to improve the quality of my deep work in both depth and length.


  • Dec 1st : 6 hrs of deep work.

    Review: Today I set aside 9 hours for deep work. Although I was only able to work deeply for 6 of those hours. Somethings that inhibited me from reaching 9 hours, include something that came up during my long break that made it difficult to recharge in time for my next study session.

    Another reason I did not make it to the full 9 hours is because I took several 10 minute breaks, so despite being at the computer for 7 hours, I took enough 10 minute breaks that they accumulated to approximately a full hour. Which I subtracted from my total time at the computer.

    Although I I did not spend a whole lot of time at the computer today, only 6 hours. I think that the quality of the work was greater than some of the moderately deep work that I had been doing in the past.

    Today instead of doing what I would consider to be 'moderately deep work' I pushed myself to stay focused on a single task or a goal at a deeper level. This seemed to yield much better results than doing 'moderately deep work' for a longer period of time.

    For me deep work creates an environment for quicker acquisition of knowledge.

    I am radically committed to deep work, I will exercise my ability to work deeply like a muscle and improve it everyday.

    Improvements: Ways to improve for tomorrow. 1. take less breaks | 2. make sure to recharge efficiently during rest periods | 3. Continue using and improving the work flow that feels the most delightful. | 4. Get wildly excited about the prospect of deep work hyper growth and the rapid acquisition of knowledge and skill. | 5. Be sure to indulge on the areas where the topics overlap, and on particularly exciting use cases.

  • Dec 2nd: 6hrs of deep work

    Review fo today: This morning was the most productive study session I have had thus far. My workflow has improved a lot, I have managed to integrate Anki effectively into my work flow which is exciting. As well as setting up nodemon in cloud 9 to run a foo.js file so I can quickly run code. I started studying early and I ended my study session. So it is possible that I studied deeply for only 5 1/2 hours today.

    Break review: During my break I ate too much of the wrong kind of food, I put myself at a disadvantage in the evening working on a difficult stomach. Where as if I had eaten lighter and a better choice of food, I think I would have worked more effectively. This food that has slightly more sugar than I usually eat seems to create an environment for poor eating habits and discomfort.

    Lat night session review: As mentioned my stomach was a little uncomfortable during this session, and I was a bit sleepy. Although I did make some headway with the file system and path portion, which I will review tomorrow morning.

    Things I can do to improve my deep work are:
    1. Eat more selectively during the break so that I am fresh for the evening session.
    2. Make sure to use these new study strategies that put me into a good workflow.
    3. Perhaps put some artificial deadlines or run some timers while I am studying to create a sense of urgency.

  • coop
    coop Posts: 915

    Hi: Your comments may be interesting, but this forum is not meant for a daily diary -- it is designed for asking questions, pointing out problems and errors etc. So I'd suggest you find a different outlet for these types of entries, as it is extra work for moderators to read and see if any action is required on our part. IF everyone did what you are doing these forums would have little value as an aid for students mastering the actual material.

  • Ah ha, I see that there is a better place for me to make these types of posts. My profile page has an 'activity' thing kind of like a Facebook wall. Ill just make my daily posts on my own personal profile page.... I didn't notice that.

    Many thanks for your work.


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