I'm off the deep (work) end, watch as I dive in

If you’re reading this in your email inbox, you’re doing shallow work....Shots fired!

Let me explain. See, email, messaging, and digital networking, albeit important, is low-impact work. It has to be done but it’s work that doesn’t move mountains.

What does? Deep work.

Deep work is the high-impact and high-leverage activities that let you complete difficult projects and accomplish ambitious goals. Like launching a new product or writing an awesome newsletter (wink, wink).

As you may know, “deep work” was coined by New York Times best-selling author, Cal Newport. While the idea took off, the tools to support the immense focus and concentration required did not.

So this week in Digital Opsessions, my teammate, Daniel Hull, wrote about a delightful tool called Centered that we at Optemization use to get that deep work done.

We’ve spent 479.13 hours in Centered, and here’s why.

Centered: all-in-one flow

Flow is what we want, but flow is what we can’t (easily) get. Despite the rapid rise to popularity in Deep Work, tooling and software haven’t caught up. Workflows for doing deep work are clunky and fragmented: one tool for music, another tool for time-blocking and another tool for task management. The result? An annoying workflow that sucks.

Enter Centered — a suite of flow-centric tools under one platform. An “operating system” for getting into flow day in and day out.

I’ll walk you through how and why it works for me.

Before Centered

Five different tools to get into flow.
Five different tools to get into flow.

After Centered


Go Deeper

Teammate Shoutout

Daniel Hull, originally from Oxford UK, joined the Optemization team in late 2021 after connecting with us on Twitter. For the past 8 months, he has worked tirelessly as a Notion Consultant on 18 different projects. In particular, Dan enjoyed building workspaces for Loop and Discord.

Fun fact: When Dan is not building Notion workspaces, he enjoys riding his motorbike around the Cotswolds.


Experimentation Zone

We’re playing around with a new different content format. What do you think?


In Other News

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The time is yours to ask whatever you want about Notion. It's a great way to get feedback on your current workspace or explore ways to level up. A few of the types of questions that might be relevant:

  • We’re just getting started with Notion. How should I think about organizing it?
  • We have a small team using Notion but how should I organize Notion as we scale?
  • My Notion workspace is a dumpster fire of a mess. How do I fix it?
  • We’re currently using GDrive/Dropbox/OneDrive/Confluence — should we switch?
  • How does Notion compare to Coda or Almanac?

Are you awesome?

Yes, you are. Cause you reached the end of this issue and I appreciate that.

Next week, we'll write about why Elon Musk is wrong about remote work 👀  I can already tell you that it’s going to be spicy so share this newsletter with a friend or colleague!

To flow and beyond,



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