How to Improve Book Retention

Stop reading non-fiction books only to forget them after you close the last page. Increase your retention by following three simple steps.

Today I am going to teach you how to improve your retention when reading non-fiction books. After all this is the only reason why we read such kinds of books, right?

I have gone over several methods that do not work. From passive reading (i.e., I just read the book and then I take the next one), to highlighting quotes and important passages, and all the way to extracting my highlights and creating a mind map organized by chapter. But when I read a great book like Adam Grant’s Think Again, I will find myself unable to generate a thoughtful review about it or remember even one important idea from the book.

Here, I will show you my latest method for improving retention. It is based on the book How to Take Smart Notes (link to Goodreads).

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The Art of Taking Feedback

Feedback is the magical thing that we all want to give (but we don’t know how) and we are never ready to receive (because we still don’t know how). Between October and March, a lot of us will be getting their annual performance evaluations, while some of us will be giving annual performance evaluations to their direct reports. There are many ways to do it (on either side) and none of them is correct or wrong.

This article is not about giving feedback but rather about getting feedback. This is the article I wish I had read before I received every single piece of feedback in my life.

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Habits for a Happier Life at Home

Developing positive habits at home can actually impact your mood with positive effects. Here, we’ll help you create household habits that will help you build a framework for a happier life.

Building and maintaining good habits can provide our lives with a positive framework, but these habits don’t simply happen by chance. It’s pretty easy to fall into bad habits that impede life around the house. A happy routine can support a happy mood, so if we stick to positive routines around our homes, we stand a good chance of keeping negative habits at bay.

There is some psychological evidence behind the power of routine to support contentment, even happiness. Although adventure and spontaneous action can lend spice to our lives, they can make life seem a bit chaotic, and that can prove stressful. Many people become bothered and decidedly unhappy when their pleasant routines are disturbed. While we always want to leave some space for change and flexibility, we can certainly protect our positive frame of mind by promoting positive habits.

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The Habit of Embracing Change

Change is everywhere and it is here to stay. You can either suffer constantly when the next change hits you, or you can adopt a habit of embracing it.

Change is a constant factor in our everyday lives. Now, when the whole world is practicing social distance and/or quarantine, in a situation that only a few anticipated, change is even more relevant. But we, humans, are not built flexible. Most of our brains’ efforts are spent to find a safe behavior and make us stick to it. This is a challenge because nothing is safe in times of uncertainty and change.

In this article I will show you how to adopt a habit of embracing change. There are many things that can help you be successful in your personal and professional life, but this skill is going to make you successful at almost anything. As we get further into the twenty-first century, I believe that there will be two skills which will be more and more valuable. Learning how to learn fast and learning how to embrace change.

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How to Organize the Free Time of Your Kids

A family of two working parents and a four-year-old decided to empower the kid to own his free time, education, and entertainment.

The current reality in the world is scary – most of us are working from home, people are getting sick all over the world. There is a lot of uncertainty. In situations like these (i.e. crisis), the best thing you could do is to concentrate on the short-term. Obviously, making long-term plans in times of uncertainty is hard.

My spouse and I are also working from home since March. Our 4-year-old kid is also at home with us. He has a lot of free time during the day, because the education system is, like often, slow to react and adapt to the new environment. After all, do you know that the original idea of the summer vacation for the kids is so that they can help their family with the harvest? Talking about adapting to new times …

Anyway, we decided to give our son’s routine in his own hands and to empower him to define his agenda for the day. We designed a game where we control the rules (i.e. guardrails like for example “max 2 hours of tablet per day”, “family has meals together”, etc.) But we largely let him decide how to self-organize his free time.

In this article, I am describing the way we did this.

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