The Science of Success

Why You Shouldn’t Follow Your Passion & The Rare Value of Deep Work with Cal Newport

December 29, 2016
In this episode we discuss why you should not follow your passion, the two biggest pitfalls people struggle with trying to build a career they love, the incredible importance of DEEP WORK, why deep work is so valuable and how we can cultivate it, as well as how you can structure your lifestyle to attain autonomy and mastery with Cal Newport.
Cal is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Georgetown University, He previously earned his Ph.D. from MIT in 2009. Cal has authored several bestselling books including “So Good They Can’t Ignore You” and “Deep Work” both of which have received deep praise from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, and many more. 
If you’re looking for some guidance as you plan your new year, listen to this episode! 
We discuss:
  • Why following your passion is bad advice
  • The 2 fundamental flaws of the idea that you should follow your passion
  • There’s a huge difference between what makes you enjoy a hobby and what makes you enjoy a profession
  • The core components of having a happy professional life
  • If we don't follow our passions, how do we end up with a job we are passionate about?
  • The simple, but not easy, path to having a passionate career
  • Importance of building up rare and valuable skills by pursuing an apprecenticeship phase
  • How to cultivate skills to attain leverage to get the autonomy and mastery that will make your work meaningful
  • The right question you should ask if you are unsatisfied with your job
  • The 2 biggest pitfalls people run into trying to find and build a career they are passionate about
  • Why you need career capital and how to cultivate it
  • There are many many paths you can take that could lead to a passionate career
  • We go deep on the concept of DEEP WORK
  • We discuss why deep work is increasingly both valuable and rare
  • How you can produce at an elite level while working fewer total hours
  • How Deep Work is a meta skill that fuels other skills 
  • Attention residue and how it can crush your cognitive ability
  • Why Deep work requires zero distraction. A single glance at an inbox or social media account can disrupt an entire deep work session
  • The importance of scheduling deep work far in advance on your calendar
  • Why everyone is an artist, and how that changes what work you should focus on 
  • The danger of focuses on “taxes and paint”
  • Deep work is a SKILL not a HABIT and it gets better with practice
  • How to stretch your ability to concrete
  • Lifestyle changes you can implement that create the foundation for deep focus and deep work
  • How to break the cycle of addiction to novel stimuli 
  • Why you should schedule all your deep work on your calendar ahead of time
  • Exercises that you can implement right now to train your concentration
  • Why Cal recommends that you should embrace boredom
  • Your deep mental addiction to new stimulus and how you can break it
  • And much more!