In Part 16, we refined our understanding of Return on Attention by taking into account our biggest constraint as knowledge workers – not just our attention but our deeply focused attention in particular.

But human attention is not a simple commodity like oil or gold. It can’t be stored in barrels or vaults or measured in liters or grams. Attention emerges from deep within the human psyche, which means that all aspects of human psychology come into play.

Luckily, we don’t need to understand the full complexity of our minds to become more effective at shaping and deploying our attention. We just need to learn how to manage our states of mind, each one representing a certain kind of attention applied in a certain context.

I believe that our states of mind have become our most important assets as knowledge workers. In an economy based on creativity, it is the state of mind that we enter through our creative process that is even more rare and valuable than any product or deliverable we produce while in it. Our ultimate competitive advantage is a way of thinking.


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