In business, everyone is looking for productivity hacks. You want to work less and do more. Even if you love your job, it's only healthy to make time for life outside of work. We all know more than a few workaholics, but most of us don't envy their lifestyle.

If you're like me, you want the most done in the least amount of time. You're hungry for strategies that produce giant productivity leaps. You not only want to produce more work with less time but better work.

We see this trait in many people. They're high producers. They are the creative geniuses in their fields. They push the boundaries of an industry through cutting edge ideas, new product developments, and innovative business strategies.

But how, you wonder, do they do it?

They are not less busy. In fact, many of these high producers have a lot more on their plate. Still, they produce consistently over extended periods of time.

The truth is - they have a secret. It can be summed up in two, simple, four-letter words.

Deep Work.

The concept of deep work in discussed in detail in Cal Newport's best-selling book of the same title. Here's Cal's hypothesis:

"The ability to perform deep work is becoming increasingly rare at exactly the same time it is becoming increasingly valuable in our economy. As a consequence, the few who cultivate this skill, and then make it the core of their working life, will thrive."

Ok. But what exactly is deep work?

Deep work is about setting long, sustained periods of focused time to concentrate on highly demanding cognitive tasks. Deep work is about cutting out distractions, to learn faster and produce more.

Deep work is about setting long, sustained periods of focused time to concentrate on highly demanding cognitive tasks. Deep work is about cutting out distractions, to learn faster and produce more.

Is this applicable to our current world? Well...

We now live in a world where scientific studies are measuring the span of human attention in comparison to that of a goldfish. Although the data is debated, the warning is clear. We live in an overly connected world where the input is intense, overwhelming, and often, debilitating. Our attention deficit may not afflict every culture across our planet (yet), but people of the developed world must consciously develop strategies to achieve a pure concentration in a world where we're force-fed distraction.

Deep work may not solve all your problems, but it might be the key to reaching productivity rates you never dreamed possible. Here are some deep work strategies to get you started:

  • Work with deep concentration - turn off your email, shut down or silence your phone and say goodbye to social media. (Don't worry; it will be there when you get back.)

  • Schedule deep work - set a schedule for deep work and stick to it. Make it clear to your colleagues, clients, or family that this time is off limits.

  • Time yourself - put yourself on a timer where you focus on nothing but a single task. Watch how your productivity will soar.

  • Personalize deep work - are you more productive in shorter stretches? Or, do you prefer long sustained periods? Experiment until you find a schedule that works best for you.

  • Stick to the routine - why do professional athletes practice and train every day? Why do the greatest writers in history consistently practice their craft? It's not because it's always fun. It's because repetition and practice make you better.

Implementing deep work strategies into my life has made me more efficient. The concept will also make you question habits that might be holding you back.

Cal Newport holds a Ph.D. from MIT and is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Georgetown University. His qualifications lead one to believe that Newport understands what it takes to produce high-quality work over sustained periods of time.

However, I hope you reach a conclusion on the effectiveness of deep work through individual practice. It's always better, and more fun, to learn things first hand.

Today, the strategies of deep work are well studied. They are there for taking. Whether you want to become a super-producer is entirely up to you.

Good luck working deep!