Improving Reading 101
Reading is one of the key to success. I can’t emphasize how important it is to keep reading whether it is books, articles or blogs.
To be honest, I was not a big fan of reading books like a year back, I just read 2-3 books that too not completing them. I read a lot of articles/blogs though. In my free time, I usually kept scrolling through medium, reddit, linkedin and hackernews. But, in the past 6 months, with inspiration from many folks on Twitter, I started reading books and have completed around 10 books. And, now I feel how stupid I was to not read all these years.
Let’s start with the WHY?
Probably you would already know or have read multiple articles on this, you can skip this section in that case. For other - i’ll list few of many reasons for reading -
- It develops your mind to think. Just like you workout in gym for those abs, our mind also needs a workout. Understanding the written word is one way the mind grows in its ability.
- There is no better way to learn about a topic or domain rather than reading a book. Yes, article though provide info, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg you are looking at, sometimes it’s not even the tip.
“Knowledge is power” - Sir Francis Bacon.
- Experience matters. The authors writing these books have experience, understanding and years of research in a domain. Books take a lot more time to be written than reading. When the authors do there part, you should take the advantage by reading them.
The only source of *knowledge* is *experience* - Albert Einstein
- Improves your vocabulary, language command, and communication skills. This is quite obvious.
Well, obviously you know how to read since you are reading this. But, there is a difference between reading and undestanding. Reading without understanding is like writing code and not running it ever.
I’ll not go deep on how to read, there are multiple blogs on this. Rather, i’ll focus on few things which I personally feel -
- Do it at your own speed - Don’t try to finish book/article. I have seen many people just skimming through stuff to complete it, but what’s the point when you don’t really grasp it. Your pace will improve with time, just like your typing speed improves day after day.
- Make it a habit - This is the most important thing. Add it to your reminder/todo apps. See, when you start reading, it’s obvious you’ll find many distractions. It’s because you don’t really have been doing that. Once you add it to your routine, it becomes a part of you. You’ll not see the difference in 2-3 days, but within a month you will. I’ll highly recommend this book by James Clear.
- Read what you enjoy - This is a way to common, just because other’s liked this best-seller doesn’t mean you’ll like it too? After reading a few chapters, if you still don’t learn or enjoy the read. Just move to next.
- Read more than 1 book at a time - This is a personal thing, but i’ll recommend this. There are higher chances, that you get bored about certain topic. To tackle this, I generally read one book related to tech, one to productivity/startups and one or two fictions. Also, you should read articles on the topics you read that day. This gives you multiple insights about that topic.
- Take Notes - You won’t remember every thing you read. Making personal notes helps you revist the important learnings. You can use apps or use the old and gold pen paper way. I’ll also recommend to share your notes via blogs/twitter. Writing helps in retaining and better understanding of what you read. Read my notes on The Mom Test here. Will be sharing notes from other in blogs soon.
There is a brillant article on this topic. Do read this if you are not convinced about the how.
Best way is to search with filters book by ratings for topics you want to explore on Goodreads. Read reviews and get some idea what this book is about. Follow the reads recommended by the successful ones.
- Try https://readthistwice.com/ - This has book recommendation by some well known folks. Few of which are -
- Follow successful people/companies, most of them share reading list every year. - Greatest books - Non tech - Reddit gold - Bookadvice
I mostly update my reading list on Goodreads. Do follow me there!
- Hard copy are the best. But, once you start reading a lot, the costs may rise.
- ReadEra app for reading on my android device.
- Apple Books for Mac.
- I don’t have a kindle yet, but planning to buy it soon. Many people have recommended me that.
I was highly inspired from this for writing this up. Do read it.
I hope you are now motivated to read more books in an effective manner. Share your favourite reads in the comment section. Do drop a 👍 and share it with your friends.
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