As part of my intention to become a ‘maker’ more than a ‘consumer’ of information and stories, I appreciate James Clear’s advice today on How to Read Better.
The article suggests that if we want to become better readers we need firstly, to find a way to make our thoughts visible – by making notes – and then searchable. I agree that the best tool is Evernote and I am intrigued to find out more about Clippings for Kindle. I also make a note of the author and the concept, in the header section of my written journal so I can track down comments, though it’s still a manual process to flip through the pages. One day I will explore how to scan my journals.
Secondly, Clear suggests we need to connect the dots between the various ideas that we read. I do a lot of this already – asking myself “hmmm what does this remind me of?” and I can always improve by asking this question. E.g. applying my recent reading from BJ Fogg and his Tiny Habits, I wonder how I can set a tiny habit to capture one idea after each article / book / podcast?
Thirdly, summarise the main idea/s in a paragraph. In Clear’s article the main ideas are to practice making your reading memorable via searchable notes and by connecting the ideas with other things you’ve written. Then look for one thing you can apply immediately, even if application is writing a summary and sending it to someone who will benefit.
And I will add a fourth – appreciation for the author – so thanks James for your article and your ongoing improvement endeavours. You are a good role model.