Two weeks ago I mentioned the notion of think as a poet, work as a bookkeeper. Not surprisingly I heard an echo of this on a new summer series on the “Hidden Brain” NPR radio show. The first episode — You 2.0: The Value Of ‘Deep Work’ In An Age Of Distraction — features Deep Work author Cal Newton (I haven’t read his book yet, but my colleague Jeremey DuVall posted a detailed 5-star review).
In the show, Cal Newton brings up a quote by David Brooks:
Think like artists but work like accountants.
Echoes of E.O. Wilson? Yes, I’m going to assume Wilson said it first. Either way, it’s a brilliant way to frame the paradox of disciplined work to drive creativity and free thinking.
System shutdown complete.
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See also: John Cleese on creativity: sleep, rewrite, focus, avoid interruptions on Intense Minimalism. Cal Newton also talked about avoiding interruptions during deep work time.