things to remember when reading a non fiction

  • no need to finish. you’ll know when to stop
  • no need to go linearly. you can skip around
  • no need to read everything on the page before continuing
  • when you’re stuck, try reading backwards from the last sentence up. don’t worry, it’s probably not you, some books are not written in an easily digestible way
  • if things aren’t making sense because your mental bandwidth is low, get up, stretch, take couple of deep breaths, or take a nap
  • you don’t need to remember or understand everything on the page before moving onto the next page
  • but do try to get some high level understanding of one or two key ideas or main points from the page
  • if you reread the book and can’t you’ve even read those exact same words, don’t think that you’ve failed or wasted your time
  • reading is more like shaping your mind, claymaking
  • for example, being aware that these x y and z factors affect the GDP is more useful than remembering the exact percentage that factor is moving
  • and chill, you don’t need to immediately remember which three
  • well, unless you’re studying for an exam! then engage your curiosity more. find ways to make it interesting.
  • details don’t matter as much in concept books
  • while for technical books, you better have your tools open when reading to apply and verify the material hands on
  • books are for rereading. the best books are where you find new things each time
  • things takes time to stick
  • and things take practice to master
  • you don’t need to read them fast. reading is not a competitive sport. you’ll know some stuff for now and you’ll be blissfully ignorant on others for now. the important thing is to know which ones they are, and until when
  • go into a book with at least some questions you’d like to get clues and pointers on. then hunt for them by skimming, flipping, finding keywords, or making a guess at the table of content. why did you pick the book up? what did you want to know?



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Theresia Tanzil

This is where I ask questions and talk to myself | Backend web dev, web scraping, Robotics Process Automation | Blogs at