Bill Gates is a wonderful thinker. His insights into how to read are useful to consider for yourself so that you get the most of time spent reading, or participating in anything educational. Several simple ideas can be gleaned from this short video:
First, take notes when you read as this helps you concentrate, focus on and remember it.
Much of what we experience goes in one ear and out the other (or is not really absorbed from reading or other forms of non-physical interactions). You can take notes on your mobile device, in the margin of the book or article you are reading (in print or digitally), or simply in a spiral notepad which all business professionals should carry around with them.
Second, don’t start what you can’t finish or do not plan to pursue with some degree of vigor.
This leverages the principle of doing the analysis upfront to see if it is worth your time to look further. Does the material/book/article/course seem to make sense to you? Scan it quickly. Do you see ideas you connect to? Ask yourself: is this what I’m interested in; does this help me build myself, my career, my skills, my knowledge, my character, my relationships; and, what is interesting about this, and why?
Third, block out time to read and to focus.
Like concentrating and pursuing what you start to completion, making a conscious effort to learn is something that will ensure you actually do.
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Our SupplementI would add to Gates insights with the notion that I feel is vital to all successful people in business and in life: If there is a doubt in your mind, there is no doubt. Trust your gut. Our subconscious awareness contains much more than data than we often acknowledge. Your collective experiences inform that subconsciousness. Thus, if you have a doubt about whether it is worth your time to read a book, access or spend time on a website or pursue a particular path in education, you probably are right. ~ Paul Siegel
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