Day 34 of the 40-Day Challenge

In the name of Allah, most gracious and most merciful,

1. A Challenge & A keytakeaway

Today I came ahead to a great conclusion after many experiments with myself. I think it is inspired as well by something I learned from the Deep Work book. I will elaborate more about this idea here because I think it is important.

I learned that the maximum number of deep work one can do per day is 4 hours. However, I am not sure of the correctness of this piece of information. But supposing that it is true if one can’t do more than 4 hours of deep work per day, then I think at least he can do good work at the rest of the day. The conclusion is that amount of good work, provided that it is technical and needs a certain type of concentration, maybe limited as well. This may be only true for me, but I am not sure if it is the same for other people or not.

I say that because I used to continuously push myself by doing more. Yes, I took breaks between my working, and learning sessions, but I found that I was continuously blaming myself for not doing more. Although I pushed myself, I rarely came to achieve the number of hours. I felt pressurized throughout the day, and I think my work quality could have suffered accordingly.

One of the solutions then is to stop working at a certain time of the day, and do other things that are not technical or don’t require high concentration. That is by the way what I read in the Deep Work book. He even said that he has a routine at a certain time of the day he says “Shut Down” or something like this. From this time, he doesn’t do any work-related thing until he sleeps. No emails, and nothing related to his work.

The other solution that I think about is to take larger breaks throughout your day such that you have the same maximum number of the total working and learning hours per day. But instead of having a big break at the end of the day, you spread this break time throughout your day by increasing your breaks times.

But that doesn’t mean that in your breaks you won’t do any useful things. You still do useful things but they are less mentally demanding or they consume different parts of your brain than the parts you used during your deep, and good work. According to what I learned from the Deep Work book, the mind doesn’t need rest except in sleep. Apart from this it just needs switching between different types of tasks, but it doesn’t need rest.

Again, I am not sure of this conclusion, or whether which solution will be best for you, the first one, or the second one. You can experiment with yourself, and see which one works best for you.

2. Some useful pieces of advice

Most of these pieces of information are taken from Unscripted Book.

  • According to the Unscripted book which the author attributes to Psychology, when you are paid for your passion, your intrinsic motivation decreases, and your extrinsic motivation increases. You only do things when you are paid, and your passion passes away.
  • What drives people to continue in their business and do more effort is the positive feedback they receive from others. When you find that many people are happy with your product or service because you satisfied a certain need for them or solved a problem you are more driven to continue delivering value to these people.
  • When you focus on your ego, your passion without paying attention to the market needs, no one cares about your passion. When you bought the last product, did you pay any attention to the producer’s passion? The key thing here is the meaning, the value, the calling that drives a positive feedback loop that makes you more driven to deliver more not for passion but for adding value to peoples’ lives. The author of the Unscripted book gave more than one example to support this idea.
  • This also explains why certain jobs are incredibly fulfilling, and why everyone doesn’t need to be an entrepreneur. If your job fulfills meaning and purpose while also providing some autonomy, connectedness, and a feeling of competence, you struct goal.

Allah bless our master Muhammad and his family

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Lee Mathews
Lee Mathews
7 months ago

Great content! Keep up the good work!