The One Thing I Changed About How I Read
Much of my reading is either online on a computer browser or my Kindle. Mostly when I read, I think of a way to share it. It could be a blog post, video, Social Media, etc.
Have a clear purpose for your notes; if not, taking them will feel like a burden.
Sometimes when I read, I take notes to improve understanding and help follow through with the content. These are throw-away notes or ‘fleeting notes.’
For long-lasting ‘permanent notes, I go through these 3 levels of Note Taking.
Highlight: As I read, I highlight the content that I find relevant and resonates with me. I add my own notes, if any, along with the highlight. Highlighting by itself is not actively engaging. If all you do is highlighting, you are better off not doing it.
Engage: Once I am done with the reading (or research), I look through the highlights and logically arrange them. I rewrite the content in my own words. This is actively engaging with the content. Do not copy-paste. You can share this with others as a blog, tweet, video, etc.
Connect: Find similar ideas in your note collection and connect them. How you connect vary based on your note-taking system (e.g., a number on a physical card, hyperlink in software systems, etc.). This step requires more time and thinking, and I don’t do it always. But this helps build analogy and draw parallels between otherwise unrelated topics.
Highlight, Engage and Connect the next time you read.