This week was particularly busy. In addition to 11 hours worth of meetings, I had a total of 120 student screencasts to grade. I have been very good about not working at home, but I broke down and graded about 60 of the videos on Tuesday night after the rest of my family went to sleep. I am glad I did, although I am a little disappointed that I broke the separation of work and home.
This led me to wonder how sustainable Deep Work is. There comes several points in every semester where things get really busy. However, I really think that it actually is sustainable. Things are abnormally busy for me this semester because I am teaching an extra class and on a committee to basically re-do our general education program (and I am very involved in this committee—I do more than just show up for meetings). In spite of this unusual level of busyness, I have only had to work from home once this semester, and the semester is already halfway done. Moreover, I have had the following number of hours of Deep Work for each week of the semester: 9.5, 7, 6.5, 8.5, 4.5, 2.5 (this week will be between 2 and 4). So the last few weeks have been down, but they are still above what I was doing for the last several years—and this is particularly busy semester. I think that I will be able to continue doing 6–9 hours per week in future semesters.