Track Your “Deep Work”-To- “Shallow Work” Ratio to Avoid Drift (Rescuetime)

Cal Newport defines deep work as “professional activities performed in a state of distraction-free concentration that push your cognitive capacities to their limit. These efforts create new value, improve your skill, and are hard to replicate.” On the other hand, shallow work is defined as “noncognitively demanding, logistical-style tasks, often performed while distracted. These efforts tend to not create much new value in the world and are easy to replicate.”

RescueTime is a desktop application that automatically tracks and categorizes your time (based on browser and application use). With the help of RescueTime, I track my Deep-Work-to-Shallow-Work Ratio (the current balance is about 1:1).

Note: I only follow this ratio in the context of my career, allowing more spontaneity elsewhere. Admittedly, this is the most time-intensive metric that I track. It combines metrics from RescueTime and adds work that I may do offline (like in a physical journal) or on my mobile device (iOS Screen Time). Our time is all- important, and this uncommon activity will train you to invest it well.

Source: Ben Meer