I’m working with Medium to produce a series of personal development articles inside their new Membership program. [Note: Membership has a waiting list, but it’s worth it. I’ll explain below.]
The article linked above and also right here, The Complete Guide to Remembering What You Read, is life changing. But it’s also the first of many articles that I’m producing.
So here’s a few words on why you should read this article in particular and what you can expect on this topic if you are a Medium Member. I’ll try to keep the inside baseball stuff to a minimum — like why Medium Membership is destined to be a huge deal and what I think goes into the ideal personal development article.
First. This Article Matters More Than Any Other Article You Could Read Right Now.
You’ve never read this article before. Probably.
A lot of productivity articles rehash the same material in different forms. For example, most of you have tried at least one prioritization system. I’ve read over 100 variants of that article.
But I rarely see people cover how reading comprehension impacts intelligence. You’ve heard that smart successful people read a lot. So you can cargo-cult those successful people — just cram as many books down your eyes as possible.
What is the mechanism that leads from reading a book to being a more successful person? If you are an ambitious person then you care about getting the results right. The book you read today needs to make you smarter tomorrow.
The mechanism is absolutely not about remembering facts. That’s what we have the Internet for. Rote memorization is a party trick.
The reason I wanted to publish this particular article is because I want to see people learn to memorize concepts and frameworks. When you learn one of those, you can pull it out in the future to see the world in new ways.
That’s what creative people are doing — did you know that? They aren’t simply inspired people. Rather they have learned frameworks to see the world in new ways.
The article I’m recommending today, walks you through systematically becoming a better reader so that reading leads directly to you becoming a permanently smarter person.
What I’m getting at here is that you probably haven’t read this information before. That’s one. And more importantly, this is the rare personal development article that could change your intelligence level.
Second. The Value of Empathic Tutorials
Nothing is more frustrating in personal development than the following story:
You read that your hero succeeded because of “one weird trick.” You get inspired to try that one weird trick. The trick turns out to be impossibly hard. But you pull it off anyway. And yet… the trick leads to zero improvement to your life.
Here’s an inside baseball observation. The vast majority of personal development writing is not meant to improve your life. Rather, it’s meant to sell you on an additional product which may (or may not) improve your life.
Practically everything you read right now is supported by advertising. I’m calling myself out here — I edit Better Humans which publishes personal development articles for 136k subscribers. The primary intent of the publication is to sell you coaching services. The coaching services are great, which is why the articles often stop short. The articles are marketing for a future product, not the product themselves.
The reason I signed on to produce content for Medium Membership is because the readers have already paid. We’re not trying to sell them anything. So we can write a different article — one that I think is light years better.
And the guidance I’ve been giving all my authors is to shoot for empathic tutorials. It’s not enough to give advice — I want these articles to predict where you’re going to have challenges and to be honest about where and when the advice is appropriate (or not appropriate).
To make that more concrete, the author, Nik, who wrote today’s piece, is a productivity coach. He’s worked one-on-one with hundreds of people on productivity goals. Plus, last year he also wrote summaries for 365 different books — so he’s deep into personal practice on this topic.
Medium has kindly given me an editorial budget which lets me get the most from authors like Nik. He’s put together a well researched piece, that’s backed by his own wisdom, and the experience of working directly with people like you and me.
If you become a Medium Member, you can expect a steady stream of content like this. That’s my job as the producer.
If you scrolled all the way down here, then this is the article I’m trying to get you to read so that you can become a much smarter human being who devours books and remembers the lessons from those books decades from now.
A few more inside baseball type stuff.
- This is a Coach.me partnership. We’re taking our experience and expertise in personal development and pairing it with Medium’s editorial expertise. About a third of the first wave of authors come from our coaching community.
- I’m pro payment in personal development. Your life is too short to waste on sub-par free products. Invest in yourself.
- We’ve all forgotten how good paid content can be. Medium is doing the world such a service by embracing this path.