Seriously

I know I’ve been off on two long tangents recently: The long series of posts about practicing self reflection kept this blog busy for two months, and before-and-after that I’ve been doing a deep rabbit hole exploration of Slipboxes. I’m still yappin’ about Slipboxes, but I think we’ll be seeing more random things here in April.

But before that happens here’s another thing related to the Slipbox: I found this really detailed summary of Ahrens’s, How to Take Smart Notes. I’ve been reading and studying these notes, as I’m reading and studying the book. Take a look at this post, How to Take… —the site is literally named The Rabbit Hole. You’ve been warned.

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A structure to work _in_

Having a clear structure to work in is completely different from making plans about something. If you make a plan, you impose a structure on yourself; it makes you inflexible. To keep going according to plan, you have to push yourself and employ willpower. This is not only demotivating, but also unsuitable for an open-need process like research, thinking or studying in general, where we have to adjust our next steps with every new insight, understanding or achievement—which we ideally have on a regular basis and not just as an exception.

~ Sönke Ahrens from, How to Take Smart Notes (2017)

I know I’m reading the right thing when—POW—I feel like a whole bunch of loose threads in my mind suddenly make sense. I’m a master at plans and organizing. (Outlines, processes, Allen’s GTD system, etc..) But my current quest for a knowledge system began in earnest when I could no longer ignore the aching feeling that there was something I’m missing; there’s something I’m not doing correctly. Ahren’s point about “imposing structure” on oneself is the insight. There’s a time for that. (And again, I’ve got that sorted.) I’m gleefully skipping off into experimenting with a new structure to work in. This isn’t all clear to me yet, so these blog posts aren’t going to be perfectly clear either. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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