How do you sustain deep work when you have never been able to do so no matter how hard you try?

Allen F.
Talk to your doctor about adhd. Deep work is hard for everyone, but if it feels absolutely impossible every time you try, there might be an underlying reason. If there’s not, maybe try a shorter goal: can you sustain deep work for 10 minutes? Do that for a week and then try 15 minutes…

Scott X.
Using Mel Robbins, 5 second rule and counting back, 54321, and then actually doing the action has been very helpful. Doing it first thing in the morning before life and the world have taken over ensures that it gets done. Even if I sit there and wander into space or drift off and lose focus, I stay there for the duration of time. When I write, I sometimes lose my train of thought so I'll spend more time thinking than writing. If I become anxious, I'll stop and take deep breaths. I think the very first tiny step is to do it as soon as you get out of bed and go to the bathroom. Put a journal and pen in there. We all have to use it as soon as we wake up, so let that be your time. Then go on with the rest of your routine. You've got to make it an autopilot action. I hope this helps!

Simon E.
-make sure you are organised so you can find materials easily and also have a positive astonphere when you are studying
-ensure you have a checklist or a do list that you can tick off once you are finished ( add even the smallest thing because completing it and giving yourself a tick will make you feel accomplished)
-give yourself a set time like 25-45 minutes and make sure to do nothing but study work during that time even if you feel really unproductive as you will slowly get used to working
-take frequent breaks but make sure to refrain from watching shows or dramas as you will get addicted and lose the will power to study more so it's better to use breaks for a little tidying up, having snacks, a short walk and a little stretching to focus better.
-take naps when you feel sleepy during studying, this will help you to regain focus.
– if you have distracting thoughts or an urge to do something then keep a notebook and write that thought down to do it later hence you can concentrate on your study material.
-keep practicing until you can do deep work to your satisfaction
-lastly, don't try to be perfect because remember slow work is better than no work and when we try to be perfect we hinder ourselves more rather than helping ourselves.
Hope this helps 😊 good luck!!!

Susanne U.
I would set a timer. I set up multiple things I need to do.
Piled up. Then I work as long as I can on one project. Switch to another until it's done, times up or I Need to streach. It is amazing how time flys when you get engrossed in things.

The more you deep work the longer between streaches…it is productive.

Anice P.
Maybe start with a shorter time frame, like 10 minutes at first. For me, removing all distractions helps, and particularly finding a place where I won't be disturbed by others. I may put music in my headphones to keep other noises out. I make a cup of tea, to signal to myself that it's time to focus. And I sometimes set a timer, to know that there is an end time, which can help me feel less overwhelmed.

Alberte G.
What I do to prepare myself for deep work is check my agenda, and do the tasks, “What Are My Three Most Important Tasks?” and “Block Distractions”. I try to put some ambient music in the background so it’s not too distracting. If I’m really not feeling it, I’ll go in the Deep Work task and choose the “25-minute Just Get Started” task. Just try to remove as much distraction as possible, and take breaks!

Ingelore U.
I go to a place where nothing can distract me for example a library or an university library. Put your phone in flight mode and then there won't be anything to distract you.

Beverly F.
Start with very small time increments. The pomodoro technique is 25 minutes. If you can't do it, shorten until you are successful. Then gradually increase the time.

Exercise a clean desk policy whether it be real or virtual. Observe distractions and take steps to remove or compartmentalize.

Layla Z.
For me, it can be discouraging to think about a long working session before starting. So what I usually do is try to break long sessions in smaller pieces and tasks, like chapters of a book. Then, every time I complete a “chapter” I make a mark and continue with the next one. This small gesture rewards you and cheers you up to continue. Then, without even realizing you will finish a long work or difficult work session without even realizing. You can also put some music that helps you being motivated, candles, a cup of coffee or tea. And make 10 min breaks every 2h helps me too. And of course, if you give a purpuse to your work it will help too. Is it a new business that you want to grow? A novel that you always wanted to write? Or simply a tedious job? Even in this one you can reflect and give it a purpose.

Isaiah F.
Practice makes perfect. Keep trying so you can create the habit. Your brain will get used to it. Sometimes I have to redirect my thoughts every 30 seconds, but I just mentally say "thinking" (From Michael Bernard Beckwith) or say "54321 focus" (from Mel Robbins). It really helps! Don't let your wandering thoughts control you. YOU are in control. Also, saying "I can't" is negative! You'll continue to feel likeyou can't. Say I CAN. Say I AM FOCUSED. I AM HERE.

Larry E.
Well, you know, when you have a main goal to aim, you do everything to reach that famous aim… So you vehicule all your strenghts and mind and soul, even spiritual strenghts, to reach that particular aim.. So, enforce Yourself, oil your talents and go!! you will experiment a strenght never known or considered… and you will see what you can do when you are … you!!

Bastien I.
I started out setting a timer for 15 minutes (or 5 if needed). When the timer went off I would ask myself, "Am I going to continue to work on this task or begin a new task?" Often I would become distracted and the timer would alert me of what task I should be focused on. It gives you the choice to switch gears if I wanted. I can become distracted easily when it comes to starting and finishing tasks. This trick helped me so much! I hope it helps you too.

Levi C.
I personally think it is a mind thing, if that is your target for the day irrespective of the tasks that you have, if you decide this is my allocated time to do work and you sit down and concentrate on it, that is how you will succeed. Do not beat yourself up and start small with 25 minutes or 30 then up the time. You can do it!

Carin E.
Work on only one task
Use the pomodoro technique
Put your phone away
Put on headphones

In Cio O.
Sustaining deepwook session could indeed seem a daunting, but there is a way. Here are some pointers regarding deep work:
1) keep it short, say about 25 mins. After one session take a break and return to your task.You could use Pomdordo technique.

2) keep all your gadgets away and choose a place where you won't be distracted.
And most importantly remember , it's not about the duration of your deep work session but how productive you were at that time. Instead of working for 4 hours continuously you would work in 4 sessions of 1 hours each and take a break of about 10 mins after each session. In this way your mind will be refreshed and not exhausted.

Marc S.
I am trying to do my best. Keeping my mind to do the things I need to do. First thing in the morning drink water exercise eat breakfast no matter what. And thankyou F. And team

Angelina E.
If you dont go in the flow state of work, if the thing, job, sport, can get you in that flow state when you forget everything else around you,then you dont do things you love. Change it

Francisco O.
I keep trying. No matter if i succeed or not in sustaining deep work the entire time, the fact that i gave it my best the whole time is what helps my brain get the idea over time, that, "hey! Now is not the time to wander off or notice things that distract you! Now i need you to focus on this & this only! Get it done then we can look at all the shiny things and daydream all we want but until then, get THIS done!" I try to make it a habit to talk to myself out loud, especially if I'm home alone. Because hearing reinforcement audibly can influence your brain so much more than just beating your head against a desk trying to concentrate. Your brain is an organ, it needs to be fed positive reinforcement to know it's going in the right direction, and it needs to be redirected when wandering off. No one is perfect. Especially me. However i can say that my deep work has gotten better with these techniques, as well as using the app "simple habit", to meditate on the task and help get focused before starting any deep work. This has helped me a lot in the gaining of knowledge, techniques, as well as confidence that my best is great! Remember, the more you fight distracting thoughts, the harder it is to concentrate. Try even listening to some theta wave music for focus or maybe even some pink noise on YouTube for relaxed focus. This will definitely help it be more of an adventure to your mind than a chore to your entire being! Noticing the subtle changes in your mind & body as you do all these things can & will intrigue you to do more and realise that you're full of untrained & untapped potential hiding just beneath the surface of all your distractions & doubts in yourself! Keep giving it your all & your best! My kindest of thoughts, my warmest of feelings, the most positive energy i have to all of my fellow people out there who are TRYING, not just saying it but actually TRYING to be a better you! Sincerely, the best Kira I have ever been & still growing to be the best me there will ever be!