A man surrounded by hundreds of books

The Danger of Reading

I write daily about the benefits of reading, but there is a danger as well. To read a book is only half of the equation. Once you finish the last page and put it back on the shelf, you’re only 50% finished. If, in that moment, you pick up another book, then you’re in danger of too many “ins” and little to no “outs.”

It’s addicting to read more and more books. It “feels” like progress, and when you’re not able to sit down and read a book, you’ve got audiobooks, podcasts, or YouTube videos funneled into your headphones. The information going into your brain is never ending, but what’s coming out?

The danger of reading is that you never stop to consider what you’ve read. You get caught up in the addictive and endless cycle of more, and you never take the time to apply what you’ve learned.

Try this: next time you finish a book, take a few days off from reading and other inputs. During that time, review your notes from the book, take action on at least one idea, and enjoy a few walks where you ponder the content of what you’ve learned. If you skip this step, you’ve missed the point of reading in the first place.

Until tomorrow, read slowly – take notes – apply the ideas.


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