Finally, you finished reading a book you bought from Amazon. Although it was a very interesting one, you felt a little bit overwhelmed after reading it. It contained so much interesting material that you had a hard time in remembering and internalizing what was just taught.
In fact, you figured that you should probably re-read some sections again, so that they would stick better and that you could truly internalize the core concepts more deeply.
So, you went back to the book and read the concepts – again and again. This helped you to grasp the core points a bit better this time.
Still, you were just wondering this question: how should you read a book the next time, so that you would internalize it easier and you wouldn’t have to waste time re-reading material again and again?
Why won’t the concepts stick?
When I look at my own experiences of learning something, I have noticed two things that have an effect on this process.
First, if I just try to read something (for e.g. a new concept), most probably I forget the information very fast.
Let’s face it, if you are just reading something, but not implementing the stuff in action, it’s going to be harder to understand the concept (or learn a new skill) and apply it in your daily life.
Second, I have been in a rush when reading books.
I have a lot of books on my reading queue. Many times I have rushed through a book so that I can get my hands on another interesting title on my desk.
However, this strategy wasn’t very effective as I had a hard time understanding and remembering the concepts I had just read about.
But there was something deeper …
What I realized was that I wasn’t focusing enough on what I was reading. I pretty much read the sentence through very quickly, and sometimes that meant that I barely understood what the author was talking about.
But the even bigger issue was the learning method itself: the reading.
Although I love reading, I needed some other measures to make the lessons stick: I needed to write about them!
This way I was forced to think about the topic and focus on it properly. And writing was an excellent way to do it. Although it took me awhile to understand that writing would actually improve my learning, I was now ready to put this information to action with the next book in my reading queue.
Hitting two birds with one stone
I understand that you are getting a bit frustrated already. You are thinking: “Wasn’t this guy supposed to talk about how to get more traffic to my blog … I’m just wondering when he is getting to that?”
Well, this is exactly what I’m about to tell you next.
You see, I’m a productivity guy and I’m also a big fan of hitting multiple birds with one stone. So when it comes to reading, learning a new topic and finding ways to get more traffic, I was talking about …. guest posting.
And here is how this works: you order a book from Amazon (or download a Kindle version), read it, extract the book’s core concepts and write a guest post about it.
This gives you the following benefits:
- You are forced to go back to your material and absorb it well again
- You get to write a guest post about the core concepts in the book
- You learn the topic much better when you write about it
- You are possibly introducing a new concept to the bigger audience
- You are going to get the traffic back to your blog (considering that your post gets published in a moderate to high trafficked blog)
Also, when you read a book, you’ll most likely get a lot of new ideas to write about – whether it’s for your blog or for other blogs. You can take this even further by combining the learned concepts together. This is going to make your posts even more interesting.
Order a book and get more traffic – here is how
Let’s create a step-by-step plan which you can follow the next time you order books from Amazon (or from any other place):
1. Order the book. This is quite self-explanatory. Find a book you are interested in and purchase it – whether from Amazon or from somewhere else.
2. Read it. Read the book by making notes and underlining important sentences. Jot down the ideas for guest posts.
When I find an interesting topic, I mark the section with letter A and I draw a circle around the letter. This reminds me, that I should take action on the concept some way (for instance by writing a guest post about it).
3. Extract key concepts, combine them. Make a list of the key concepts of a book while reading it. And don’t stop there, find ways to connect the concepts together.
For instance, just recently I read a book called The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg (awesome book by the way!).
Some of the key concepts in that book were habit loops and keystone habits.
While you can learn more about the habit loops from Steve’s post, the keystone habit is an important habit, which can reflect changes to other parts of one’s life too (for example, when you lose weight, you also decide to start exercising, become an early riser, become more social, etc. …)
I just took these two concepts and wrote a guest post about it. After doing that, I learned them on much a deeper level than just by reading about them.
4. Outline, write and submit your post. Now that you have extracted the concepts, write the post. I’m using Danny’s method to do this, but you can naturally follow your own system if you want to.
After editing and proofreading the post, find a suitable blog and submit the post there.
Make sure that you have a compelling bio box at the end, so that people will get back to your blog or to your landing page.
5. Do it all over. Follow the steps so far with your next book. Take full advantage of the time you have spent reading the book – by writing about it, learning it more deeply and getting exposure and traffic to your site.
6. Bonus step: Get extra exposure. Finally, you can do even more to get the most out of the books you have read.
- Interview the author. I like to do interviews on my blog and it’s a great way to learn more about the book’s topic. Consider doing the same as well.
- Review the book. You can write a review about the book on your site or write a review on Amazon. You can even do video reviews on either platform.
You can gain many benefits by reading a book first and then writing about it.
Writing a guest post about it can bring good traffic to your blog or to your landing pages.
Just make sure you have your notebook ready, when reading your next book 🙂
Over to you: What is the most effective way of learning the lessons in a book?
Please share your comments and experiences on the comment area.