Outwork Everyone By Being… Bored?

A gift awaits you: it’s boredom.


Written by jack friks

Last Updated: Oct 31, 2023

To save you a lot of time, The phrase “Outwork everyone by being bored” is basically just saying this…

If you can avoid being overstimulated, you can be bored, and you can win. You can win because the ability to enter a state of deep work/undistracted focus is a modern superpower. 99% of people can’t be bored and are overstimulated, so they can never focus with depth. Because of this, they get little done in lots of time compared to someone who is okay with being bored.

This movement of outworking everyone is really a movement of prioritizing depth. A lot of these ideas come from the book “Deep Work” by Cal Newport (which is an amazing book). Having read the book and experiencing the power of being bored I figured Ide write a little piece about how you can practically use boredom to move towards “Outworking everyone”.

You don’t need more time.

If you don’t need more time, then what do you need?

Focus! You need more focus.

The reason why boredom is a gift for those who want to “outwork everyone” is because boredom helps you focus.

If you are okay with being bored, and sitting still with your thoughts, then you will be much less distractable. If you are much less distractable you have a higher likelihood of starting a task and staying on it. If you start a task and stay on it, you are focused. And finally, if you are focused, you are going to get more done, in less time. That’s how this whole thing works.

That’s the gist of working deeply. That’s how being bored helps you outwork everyone who is overstimulated and can’t stand boredom (which is most people).

You don’t need more time, you need more focus. You need the depth that boredom brings, and the undistractable parts that come with it.

A simple technique for focus

Now, you may be wondering: Okay, but how can I start becoming less stimulated and more okay with boredom?

The simple answer I’ve found is that you have to train the muscles.

The muscle of focus, and the muscle of boredom. They kind of go hand in hand, so here’s what I’ve done in the last year to help myself be on my way to “outwork everyone by being bored”:

I’m by no means perfect, my monkey brain takes over from time to time, but right now I’m using the technique I’m about to talk about.

The technique is simple:

  • Set one single task to work on. JUST ONE!!!

  • Set a timer for 20–30+ minutes (Can be less if you can’t yet focus for this long)

  • Only work on that one task for the duration of the timer.

  • 5 minute break, repeat.

  • On the 4th repetition: take a longer break (15 minutes).

When you’re on your breaks, be bored. Read a book. Walk around. Do anything, but don’t open things like social media or email: your attention on these things will slip over for too long after your break and ruin your focus. Be bored.

I use pomofocus.io, this technique is known as the Pomodoro technique.

Now, you don’t have to use the technique: but it has helped me drastically work on my focus and boredom muscles. I started with 15 minutes on the clock for focus, and then I am now up to 60 minutes! Keep in mind: I took baby steps, it’s taken me months to get here.

Start small, stay consistent: and outwork everyone by being bored (soon enough). Now go work those muscles!

heyo! thanks for reading.
— your friend jack ♠️

If you want to create some cool sh*t yourself: then come explore the hub of curiosity and creation I’m making @ frikit.net. I have a book coming December 12th too, should be cool, signup here to make sure you don’t miss it.

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