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I’m an Agilist, a former software engineer, a gamer, an improviser, a podcaster emeritus, and a wine lover. Learn more.

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Paul Tevis

Entries in things i have learned (121)

Sunday
Oct182009

Absorbing and Reflecting

The more I read, the more I need to write.

As some people are probably aware, I'm an external processor: I understand things by communicating them. Or, as I've put it before, I learn by hearing myself speak. It look me a surprisingly long time to figure this out, but I guess that's because I didn't talk to myself enough.

The upshot of this is that the more information I take in, the more I need to spit it back out. That's one of my primary motivations for kicking this blog back into gear. The problem, of course, is that the more time I spend digesting books, TV, movies, etc., the less time I have to reflect on it, write about it, and truly absorb it. This is frustrating to say the least.

I haven't come up with a perfect solution to the problem yet, but one that does seem to be working for me is putting limits on what I expect myself to take in. For example, I've set a goal of one chapter of The Civil War each week. Once I finish my weekly quota (which isn't too difficult), I've given myself permission to set the book aside, which gives me a chance to think and write about it. (The side benefit is that it also lets me fit in a few other projects in parallel, which is something I've always been bad about.)

I've been fond of the saying "How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time." Now I have to learn how to talk with my mouth full.

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