5 Day Reading Challenge in July 2023 📚✨

5 Day Reading Challenge in July 2023 📚✨

Day 1️⃣

  1. Mastering the Art of Letting Go by Leo Babauta (4 mins)
  • Leo Babauta stresses the importance of letting go, stating it's often our internal expectations, not external factors, causing distress.
  • Acceptance of things as they are and creating change from positive intentions rather than dissatisfaction is recommended.
  • The practice involves acknowledging feelings, releasing unhelpful mental concepts, experiencing the moment purely, and taking necessary action from this liberated state.
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2. 8 Thoughts on Reading Well by Dalton Mabery (2 mins)

  • Emphasize focused, single-tasking over multitasking. Clearly define top priorities.
  • Encourage a process-oriented mindset. Set a daily "anchor task".
  • Cultivate energy management, complete crucial tasks early, and minimize distractions.
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3. Focus: The Ultimate Guide on How to Improve Focus and Concentration by James Clear (11 mins)

  • The guide emphasizes the importance of focus and concentration for productivity, highlighting that multitasking is less effective due to the mental "switching cost."
  • To improve focus, Warren Buffett’s “2 List” Strategy is suggested: selecting top five goals to focus on while completely avoiding others until the top five are achieved.
  • The guide recommends various methods to improve concentration, such as measuring progress, focusing on the process rather than the result, managing energy rather than time, and creating an environment conducive to focus.
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Day 2️⃣

  1. Reopening the mind: how cognitive closure kills creative thinking by Anne-Laure Le Cunff (9 mins)
  • Cognitive closure, the urge to quickly find answers that fit existing beliefs, can obstruct creative thinking and innovation.
  • The Need for Closure Scale (NFCS) assesses this tendency; higher scores often lead to stereotypical judgments while lower scores promote open-mindedness and creativity.
  • Reducing cognitive closure can enhance creativity; strategies include promoting psychological safety, embracing unsolved problems, openly sharing early-stage ideas, and intentional decision-making.
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2. 6 strategies that will make you a better reader — and person by Ryan Holiday (5 mins)

  • The article proposes six strategies for better reading: stop reading uninteresting books, keep a "commonplace book" for noteworthy quotes and ideas, re-read classic books for evolved understanding, seek book recommendations from admired individuals, learn from history and others' experiences, and overcome reading slumps by revisiting impactful texts.
  • The author emphasizes selective, enjoyable reading and learning from others' wisdom to enhance personal growth and avoid past mistakes.
  • Re-reading influential texts is also underscored, as comprehension can change over time and circumstances.
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3. 10 Japanese Concepts For Self-Improvement and a Balanced Life by Hairej Younes (6 mins)

  • The article presents 10 Japanese concepts for personal growth: Omoiyari (caring for others), Ikigai (devotion to enjoyable activities), Wabi-sabi (embracing imperfections), Mottainai (gratitude for resources), Shin-Gi-Tai (balance of mind, body, technique), Shu-Ha-Ri (process of learning), Kaizen (continuous improvement), Mono no aware (empathy towards impermanence), Omotenashi (selfless service), and Ho-Ren-So (effective communication).
  • These philosophies cover compassion, purpose in life, acceptance of imperfection, resourcefulness, balance, learning and innovation, continual improvement, empathy, selfless service, and communication.
  • By integrating these concepts, individuals can navigate and flourish in a multicultural and interconnected world.
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Day 3️⃣

  1. Stop thinking about productivity, and start thinking about focus by Finn (9 mins)
  • The author challenges the conventional focus on productivity, suggesting instead that the key to effective work lies in maintaining focus.
  • A multitude of productivity tips often found in articles, such as maintaining a schedule and a proper work environment, are seen as less crucial than the ability to focus.
  • The concept of "focus" is presented as the "new productivity," implying a shift in mindset about what truly drives effective work and accomplishment.
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2. Learning Without Schools: Four Points To Free Yourself From The Educational Get-Certified Mantra by Robin Good (6 mins)

  • The author critiques the traditional school system, arguing it's outdated and ill-prepares students for today's fast-paced world.
  • They propose a new educational approach emphasizing real-world learning, critical thinking, hands-on experiences, and valuing mistakes over formal qualifications.
  • The author calls for a shift in education, prioritizing practical skills and experiences over rote learning and certification.
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3. How Do You Live in the Present? by Arlin Cuncic (8 mins)

  • The article emphasizes the significance of living in the present and offers strategies such as mindfulness, focusing on one task at a time, and expressing gratitude.
  • It suggests implementing practices like acceptance, mindfulness meditation, seeking positive social support, limiting technology use, and incorporating exercise or yoga.
  • Failing to live in the present is often due to distractions and anxiety; to improve, focus on active listening and giving full attention to others.
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Day 4️⃣

  1. Build Personal Moats by Erik Torenberg (5 mins)
  • A "personal moat" is a unique, durable competitive advantage in one's career, based on rare and valuable skills or knowledge that is hard for others to replicate.
  • Discovering this advantage involves finding what is easy for you but hard for others, and which aligns with your passions and the world's needs.
  • Whether specializing or generalizing, the key is being exceptional at something, leveraging that to gain social and financial capital.
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2. 40 Years of Stanford Research Found That People With This One Quality Are More Likely to Succeed by James Clear (5 mins)

  • Stanford research spanning 40 years revealed that the ability to delay gratification is a key quality for success in various aspects of life.
  • Children who could wait for a second marshmallow in the famous Marshmallow Experiment had better outcomes, including higher SAT scores and improved social skills.
  • The capacity to delay gratification is not fixed; it can be developed through reliable experiences and training, making small improvements and fulfilling promises.
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3. Chesterton’s Fence: A Lesson in Second Order Thinking by FS Blog (7 mins)

  • Understanding the rationale behind previous decisions is crucial for making great decisions and avoiding potential harm.
  • Second-order thinking involves considering the consequences of our decisions and the consequences of those consequences, leading to extraordinary results.
  • Chesterton's Fence principle states that we should not remove a fence or change a system without understanding why it was put in place, as it may have important reasons and removing it can lead to unintended consequences.
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Day 5️⃣

  1. The default effect: why we renounce our ability to choose by Anne-Laure Le Cunff (5 mins)
  • The default effect refers to our preference for preselected options, often leading to suboptimal decisions due to loss aversion and cognitive effort in evaluating alternatives.
  • This effect impacts various life aspects, limiting our potential and resulting in less-than-ideal outcomes over time.
  • Overcoming the default effect involves practicing metacognition, deliberate decision-making, and envisioning our future to make more intentional choices.
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2. How Innovative Ideas Arise by James Clear (8 mins)

  • Thomas Thwaites' attempt to build a toaster from scratch highlighted the complexity of creating basic items without pre-existing materials or processes.
  • Innovation often results from building upon and improving existing ideas rather than starting from scratch, as demonstrated by the evolution of flight.
  • Recognizing the complexity and interconnectedness of our modern world can help us leverage existing, proven ideas to efficiently create innovative solutions.
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3. The 85% Rule for Learning by Scott H. Young (4 mins)

  • The 85% Rule suggests optimal learning occurs when we achieve success around 85% of the time, balancing success and failure to discern effective strategies.
  • The rule advises adjusting the level of support or difficulty based on the success rate to optimize learning.
  • Several theories, including Vygotsky’s zone of proximal development, Kintsch’s zone of learnability, and Eisenberg's theory of learned industriousness, support the 85% Rule, highlighting a sweet spot of difficulty that maximizes learning and motivation.
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