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Simple Summaries

September 17, 2019

I’m trying to implement a new habit. When I read something, I will write a summary (at least one sentence) of it. This is inspired by these two posts on Farnam Street.

To kick it off, here’s my summary of the first post:

It’s not enough to read something and go “oh that makes sense”. To get the full benefit you have to do two more things: deeply understand what you read, and apply it to your life.

To do the former, quiz yourself. See if you can summarize what you read, or try to explain it simply to a reasonably smart person who is unfamiliar with the topic.

For the latter, make a rule for your life that incorporates your new insight (ideally in the form of “when X, I will Y”).

If you fail to do these things, you are not learning. You are wasting time.