Years ago I attended a conference. I can’t tell you what conference it was or anything about the speakers. I don’t even remember when it occurred. What I do remember is one of the speakers talking about working head-down. Essentially, their concept was when we get into a deep state of concentration, we work with our head down and don’t notice the world around us.
I often find myself in a state of deep concentration while working. Sometimes hours go by, and I realize I haven’t moved because I’m so entrenched with my project. Now, this might not be the best way to work, and it’s definitely not sustainable every day. However, when my brain is ready for some actual head-down work, I go with it and am immensely productive.
In reality, these moments don’t come often. There are far too many distractions preventing my brain from entering a proper state of flow. As I type this, Blackstreet is singing No Diggity, causing my brain to conjure images from Pitch Perfect. Behind this browser window, I can see Twitter calling my name. There are also unread notifications on my email and on Discord. Everything is trying to pull my attention from drafting this newsletter.
Life is a balance of working in a state of flow (sometimes in silence) and in a distracting mess of connectivity. There isn’t anything wrong with either style, as long as it works for you. The key is discovering what allows you to enter a head-down work mode and then calling upon it when needed.
How do you enter a head-down method of productivity?