Isn’t it amazing how much work you can get done when you’re focused and “in the the zone?”
It’s equally amazing how little you can do when you’re constantly distracted.
I’ll spare you the “did you know multitasking is a myth?” talk that you’ve probably heard repeated a million times by every self-help and productivity guru out there!
(Don’t you get sick of hearing about that?!)
I don’t know about you but I’d rather learn about what IS possible to do (deep work) versus what’s impossible (multitasking).
So in the spirit of “I’m sick of hearing about multi-tasking” I want to share a practical tip on how you can focus on an important project and get it done in record time.
I call it the: “Private 2-Day Deep Work RV Retreat.” (don’t worry, I’ll come up with a sexier name later but I’m not worried about that now).
Here’s what it is:
Drive an RV (you can rent one here) to a nearby campground and spend 2 entire days in deep work mode by yourself.
Since most campgrounds have an afternoon check in time you could leave after lunch on Friday and return Sunday afternoon. This would give you Friday evening, all day Saturday and Sunday morning to concentrate on whatever deep work project you want to get done.
I got this idea from two different sources.
The first was when I was reading about the Discipline of Study in Richard Foster’s book Celebration of Discipline. In it Foster suggests taking a 2–3 day private retreat to study the Bible and other important spiritual books.
As I read that I remembered something I read in Deep Work by Cal Newport. Newport shared a story about J.K. Rowling’s “Grand Gesture” strategy where she would go to a luxurious hotel near Edinburgh Castle and focus on her writing.
Newport explains why this strategy is effective:
“By leveraging a radical change to your normal environment, coupled perhaps with a significant investment of effort or money, all dedicated toward supporting a deep work task, you increase the perceived importance of the task. This boost in importance reduces your mind’s instinct to procrastinate and delivers an injection of motivation and energy.”
In other words, when you go out of your way to do deep work you’ll be motivated to get it done.
So that’s my thought of the day for you. Go find an RV or a “luxurious hotel near Edinburgh Castle” (If it’s not near Edinburgh Castle don’t bother) and go deep!
I plan on taking one of these trips soon so of course I’ll blog about that to let you know how it goes.