#1179 High Quality Work Produced =

Time Spent x Quality of Energy x Intensity of Focus

Back in the day, we chatted about Cal Newport’s Deep Work Equation.

It goes like this:

High Quality Work Produced = Time Spent x Intensity of Focus

I’ve been playing around with that equation since I discovered it years ago.

The more I think about it, the more I like it.

And, the more I think about the “Intensity of Focus” part of the equation, the more I think we can separate that into two distinct and important components.

First, to Cal’s primary point, you need to ELIMINATE DISTRACTIONS and truly go Deep. If you’re shifting your attention from thing to thing to thing, your Intensity of Focus is very weak and, as a result you’ll have to work much longer to create anything of value.


I think it’s important to consider another super-important facet of the Intensity side of things.

If your Energy is low and your mind is dull because you ate late, binge-watched your favorite show then got a poor night of sleep, it doesn’t matter how much you eliminate distractions, you simply won’t be able to produce at highest level.

(And, if you think you can then… well, maybe you just haven’t experienced a TRULY epically productive morning/day. 😲 lol)

Case in point: That other night when I snow-globed my brain by not quite completely shutting down? Relative to me at my best, I was pretty much useless the following morning.

Even with my normal Deep Work protocol of hammering my #1 most important thing before input-distractions, I just couldn’t come close to producing the same quality work I can when I’m well-rested and ready to rock.

(Which is fine. It is what it is. On days when we just don’t have it, we practice being a professional and playing poorly well and then rebound back to awesome.)

Which leads us to a slight modification of our equation:

High Quality Work Produced = Time Spent x Quality of Energy x Intensity of Focus

That’s Today’s +1.

How’s your Energy? And your Focus?

Can you see how both of those affect the quality of the work you produce? (And the amount of time you need to invest to achieve results?)

What’s working?

What needs work?

How can you +1 it?


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