Hyperfocus is a practical guide to managing your attention. Drawing on academic research, Chris Bailey illustrates the power of hyperfocus and scatterfocus, two opposing approaches to enable both deep and creative thinking from meta-attentive insight.
Hyperfocus by Chris Bailey
Hyperfocus is a fresh and easy read on attention, intention and productivity.
Offering actionable, data driven insights, the author explains how taking control of our attentive thought process can help drive up our productivity in the workplace.
Below are some of the key ideas I took from this book:
- Tasks can be defined by a matrix of productivity vs. attraction as unnecessary, distracting, necessary and purposeful.
- The human mind has evolved natural limits of attention that are now maladaptive in the modern world.
- Understanding the limits of our attention (met-attention) allows us to apply either hyperfocus (flow/purposeful) or scatter-focus to the task at hand.
- Applying hyperfocus to a task sets the stage for superhuman productivity and flow.
- Setting daily intentions allows us to focus on only the most productive tasks, helping us to filter out the distracting and unnecessary.
- Working to eliminate distractions and unnecessary mental clutter sets the stage for improved productivity and more enjoyable work.
- Distractions come from ourselves and others but can only be managed by a commitment to become a good custodian of our mental space.
- Scatterfocus is our brain’s hidden creative mode, allowing us to connect novel dots together into new concepts.
- Scatterfocus can be set as (a) capture mode (b) problem solving mode (c) habitual mode.
- Einstein, Eddison and Dali all employed different scatterfocus techniques to prime their mind for creative endeavour.
- Caffeine,Alcohol and other drugs should be used strategically not habitually to alter our neurochemistry for either hyperfocus or scatter focus problem solving.
- Scatterfocus works like a disk defragmenter to refresh our ability to hyperfocus, providing fresh energy and concepts for deliberative practice.
- Switching between Scatterfocus and Hyperfocus is an optimal strategy for improving overall productivity, energy and happiness on a hour by hour basis.