Do you consider yourself an avid note-taker? Do you take notes at meetings or in class because you think you should (this time, you say, they’re going to come in handy), but always end up with full, useless notepads waiting to be thrown away? This book will break you of habits of redundant note-taking and teach you to take notes for the future, not for the past.
The Elements of Note-Taking is not your average self-help guide to note-taking strategy. Instead of jumping straight to diagrams and mechanics, it begins at the point where most of us go wrong: the simple principles behind the action. We take notes in order to focus our attention and guide our behavior in order to change the future. So it’s no wonder most notepads never get a second look; backward-facing records of past information don’t offer much help as we move forward.
This simple premise – that we should orient our note-taking toward the future, not the past – can motivate a revolutionary change in the way we manage information in our everyday lives. Author Esor Huang teaches us not how to draw graphs and boxes, but how to formulate guiding questions: How is the lecture relevant to what I need to know later? How will our current discussion help me fix a mistake, or handle a problem? Do I have the hours in the day to finish my entire to-do list, and if not, what’s my next step?
Esor Huang brings patient rationality, sympathetic understanding, and unparalleled thoroughness to this detailed guide to day-to-day information management for the average modern person. His detailed, thoughtful instructions will help you bring reflection and strategy to your daily task management and information retention habits, smoothing your path to success in this digital world.