Summary of Deep Work

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Deep Work book summary
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9 Overall

9 Applicability

8 Innovation

9 Style


Professor Cal Newport presents a multipart argument for deep, concentrated work. He explains that work that demands your full focus is intrinsically valuable and rewarding. You need to be able to handle “deep work” to succeed in an information economy. Yet people face increasing distractions or social pressure that drive them toward shallow work. Newport develops his ideas with a blend of formal research, stories and personal accounts about the challenges and rewards of deep work. He provides tips for arranging your life to support deep work, which he sees as valuable, productive and rare. He makes his case persuasively and even poetically. getAbstract recommends his guidance to knowledge workers and anyone else who is seeking flow, creativity or focus.

In this summary, you will learn

  • What constitutes “deep work,”
  • Why deep work matters and
  • What strategies you can use to organize your life to support your deep work.

About the Author

Cal Newport teaches in Georgetown University’s computer science department. He also wrote So Good They Can’t Ignore You: How to Win at College.



“Deep Work” and Why It Matters
Deep work is professional work that requires complete focus and full concentration. Deep work pushes your creative and analytical abilities to their limits. For real achievement in art, science, business or other fields, you must work deeply. To understand...

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Comment on this summary

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    Dione Le Tissier 2 weeks ago
    Really interesting- we all suffer from shallow work and distractions at some point in our lives. Keen to try this concept.
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    Christine Lane 3 weeks ago
    I like the concept of "deep work" reminds me to "present" not just there. Thanks
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    Konrad Samarajiwa 3 weeks ago
    This was my personal book of the year 2016. I read it in full size and can only recommend it to all knowledgeworkers.
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    Pavlos Pavlidis 3 weeks ago
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    Nemanja Kezo 1 month ago
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    Ekom Akpaitok 1 month ago
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    Candy Weekes 1 month ago
    What a great idea!
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    Chris Davidson 3 months ago
    I'm reading this book now and I have to say that Cal Newport is bang on target. This will give you the courage to do what you believe to right - break away from the inefficient herd and get doing real work. Game changer.
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    Loretta Spurling 4 months ago
    Raised my awareness of deep work and the idea that I can be more protective of my time.
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      Mike Schoonderwoerd 3 months ago
      Well said.
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    Gabriella Bitecola 4 months ago
    This was really good
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    Mohammed ALI 4 months ago
    shallow work spending 90% of our daily work.
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    Eric DIBI 4 months ago
    very concise and true
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    Cindy Zhang 5 months ago
    Well,right moedern people are used to distraction. We have to be more focused.
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    precious chigarira 5 months ago
    Good ideas.
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    Gemma Clifton 5 months ago
    Good ideas / tips for rebalancing quality over quantity.
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    Hamze Hussien 6 months ago
    i like this rules
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    Victoria Cao 6 months ago
    Good read, thanks!
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    Marquita Hanson 6 months ago
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    Martin de Urgoiti 7 months ago
    Great inspiration and simple rules that can be implemented with ease and will.
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    John DeMann 7 months ago
    It all goes back to what Bill Gates and Warren Buffet said was the one trait that made them who they are, Focus.
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    Michelle Ubben 9 months ago
    Great inspiration to drain the shallow work and block time for deep work that requires focus. A good way to start may be to identify priorities that requires deep work and schedule time for it away from the office churn.
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    Richard Pettibone 9 months ago
    Great read!
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    Shashank Chourasia 9 months ago
    Interesting & valuable thoughts
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    Matthias Yström 9 months ago
    Useful thoughts for individuals but also for managers in setting expectations and in coaching employees.
  • Avatar
    Daniel Lee 9 months ago
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    Oz Yitzhak 10 months ago
    Very ggod
  • Avatar
    Richard Ploss 10 months ago
    Interesting summary. The book brings up some very valid points
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    Peter Yarrow 10 months ago
    Some interesting points of view. The advice on emails is particularly thought provoking.
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    Ewelina Mawle 10 months ago
    Very good summary
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    Jie Wang 10 months ago
    #30DaysOfSummaries It has something in common with other articles regarding concentration and focuses. The advantage of this summary is that it gives clear and easy-to-follow way to its reader. I like the style.
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    Jeff Ostrowski 10 months ago
    Spot-on advice and analysis.
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    Junaid Mian 10 months ago
    Insightful, helpful, and valuable.
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    Duncan Parkes 10 months ago
    Boring. Got through first few paras and then spent time boosting my status on social media with witty comments like this. Why does it matter? Shallow thinking is enough to make a good living why bother with all this hard stuff?
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    Hans Overturf 10 months ago
    Solid. Buying the book. As to A A's comment regarding 30 Days of Summaries: Mindful Unplugging or Deep Work? I use the summaries to find interesting, meaningful books that I will then read in their entirety.
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    Winston Williams 10 months ago
    Very valuable information. People are busy being busy and not productive. It is not how many hours you "put in", it's what you "put in" to the hours.
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    Rajesh Venkiteswaran 10 months ago
    Very useful book. Good summary
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    Ashish Agarwal 10 months ago
    #30Days of Summaries: Mindful Unplugging or Deep Work? Are we making more efficient non-humans out of ourselves through all this?

    It would be interesting to find out the tangible effect on an individual's productivity after incorporating the suggestions laid out in this and other summaries from this challenge.
  • Avatar
    Keith Hollingsworth 10 months ago
    Really useful summary, I also found this youtube summary to be interesting about the same book (length = 8 mins)
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    Tatiana Aminova 11 months ago
    Thank you so much! I love it !
    Very true!
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    John Wilson 11 months ago
    I agree - really useful summary, thanks
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    Wim Annerel 11 months ago
    Tahnk you so much for this summary. This is one of the most important books of the decade for me!

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