June 17, 2015
Making Consumption Actionable

I've been reading a lot of books lately, but I need to start digesting and applying more of the advice and actions within the books. I consume a lot of content from a plethora of mediums; Twitter, Medium, Blogs, Magazines, Books, Podcasts, etc, but I've realized that most of this content goes un-implemented. There are pieces that are opinions or not applicable to me, but there are many aspects that can be derived and applied to my own life, endeavors, and used to continue growing.

Continuous Improvement

I think learning should be iterative, as soon as new information applies to the current situation, it should be employed. This is part of the main philosophies found within Kaizen. Kaizen is a long-term approach to work that systematically seeks to achieve small, incremental changes in processes in order to improve efficiency and quality. Kaizen can be roughly translated from Japanese to mean "good change." Kaizen, or continuous improvement, is typically associated with companies but it's main process can be applied to personal growth as well.

The Steps in Kaizen

  1. Assess
  2. Plan
  3. Implement
  4. Evaluate

How Kaizen Applies

In this scenario, Assessing & Planning is part of reading and creating a list of impacting actions to implement. 3. Is the actual implementation, and 4. is evaluating and retrospecting on how making new decisions/actions on new information changed or affected the outcome.

Book Notes

To this point, book notes have been taken in a separate journal and sometimes underlined inline and written in margins.I'm going to start writing book note posts with reviews & a rating for each book. This will help me digest and turn these notes into actionable advice and think more in-depth about the contents. My goal is to compile at least 10 key takeaways from each book, but depending on the book, the list might end up with more.These are things that I intend to be revise and make as concise and clear as possible.It's also been proven that you learn and retain information better by teaching someone else.

Your Process

What is your process for digesting information and making it actionable? Do you take notes in a separate journal? Do you type notes in your phone/computer as you read? What other ways have you found to be effective at making sure you're making the most of your time learning so you actually implement?Cheers to improvement!