Review of Building a Second Brain v2

I got to discover Tiago Forte via one of his guest posts in RibbonFarm. It caught my eye because the way he wrote it expressed succinctly some of my own ideas. And who wouldn’t like an author who writes stuff on ideas you already agree with?

But I didn’t just stop there. I dig deeper into his work and am a member of his praxis blog. I even attended a Thinking Tools course in Sydney after he spoke highly of it. I enjoyed the Thinking Tools course immensely.

It was not too long after I was thinking, “how can I write like Tiago?” That was the main emotional pull for me signing up to his Building a Second Brain V2 course.

Tiago’s Building a Second Brain is jam-packed full of useful concepts. It comes with a bonus course which is the Get Stuff Done like a Boss. Before the Building a Second Brain (BaSB) actually started, I was already learning plenty of useful concepts via the Get Stuff Done like a Boss (GSDLB).

So before lesson 1 of BaSB, I already felt that I have gotten my investment back.

It’s easy to fall into the thinking that what Tiago teaches is merely knowledge and concepts. That will be a headfake. Through the knowledge and concepts he provides in both courses, Tiago is also indirectly showing you his philosophy of being an executive or an entrepreneur in this new millenia. It is this philosophy presented as note-taking productivity advice that is truly going to be pivotal for the average executives and entrepreneurs given the upcoming upheavals of massive information and automated workflows.

The saying, “ideas are cheap. execution is everything” by now is a cliche. While the bottleneck to creative output is no longer the supply of ideas, the bottleneck is not execution either. More precisely, it’s the clarity of thought that has become today’s executives and entrepreneurs bottleneck. Without clarity, you will get mired in bad execution.

Tiago is training us to be warriors not of facts or activity, but of warriors of clarity. Through clarity, comes productivity. My favorite lesson of his BaSB course is Progressive Summarization. That was the one I could immediately apply in real-life. Given that I have only applied about 10% of what he taught, I fully expect this course to be the gift that keeps giving.

The downside to the course is that there’s so much material, you need to pace yourself and forgive yourself if you cannot finish all of it in time. You need to revisit to relearn some of the materials. I guess Tiago also realizes this and actually extended the course time (midway) to give us more time to finish our assignments. This is actually what made me admire him as an instructor. He cares about his students’ learning and puts us before his interests. His revenue is already locked in from the start so by spending more time than he first planned, he actually doesn’t benefit more out of the extension.

One of the very best courses out there. I highly recommend to all even the most well-practiced notetakers and productivity masters, there’s something here for everyone to learn.

I am re-taking the course as I expect V3 to be even better than V2.