How to remember your knowlede, right when you need it? Use Progressive Summarization.
I will show you how to put into action any piece of learning, right when it is needed. And I will share a FREE tool to help you with this!
Today at a glance:
The challenge of knowledge is not acquiring it. The challenge is knowing how to forward it to the future challenge where it is needed.
How do you structure a note so that it’s easily discoverable and usable in the future?
To achieve this you can use Progressive Summarization. It proposes to summarize a piece of information as much or as little as the information deserves.
I built this amazing tool to start using the Progressive Summarization technique, and I am sharing it with you. For FREE.
You probably consume a lot of content full of interesting knowledge but, what are the chances that you will be ready to put any given piece of learning into practice right when it is needed?
The current digital era is a dance between content creators and “infovores” (People that force-feed themselves endless books, articles, and courses, in the hope that something will stick.)
The challenge of knowledge is not acquiring it, believe me, you can acquire almost any knowledge at almost any time. The challenge is knowing which knowledge is worth acquiring in the first place.
This is the job of a “second brain” — an external and digital repository for the things you learn and the resources from which they come (And the ideas that come up during this process)
But then, the challenge is how to “forward the knowledge” to the moment right when it is most applicable and most needed. How do I make what I’m consuming right now easily discoverable for my future self?
This is the job of Progressive Summarization.
Progressive Summarization is a framework presented by Tiago Forte in his book “Building a Second Brain” and it states that our priority during note-taking is to balance “discoverability and understanding”
Making a note discoverable involves making it small, simple, and easy to digest.
Making a note understandable involves including all the context: the details, the examples, and cited sources.
“This is a difficult tradeoff because you cannot compress something without losing some of its context” according to Tiago Forte.
To solve this, Progressive Summarization proposes an opportunistic compression — summarizing a piece of information as much or as little as the information deserves.
Layer 0 is the original, full-length source text.
Layer 1 is created by importing relevant passages, copy-pasted from the original source.
Layer 2 is the first round of true summarization, in which you bold only the best parts of the passages imported.
Layer 3 is created by highlighting something if it is a truly unique or valuable idea.
Layer 4 is an informal executive summary at the top of the note, restating the key points in your own words.
Note that all the previous layers are preserved, giving you the freedom to leave things out without worrying that you’ll lose them. With this “safety net” of preserved notes, you can strike out decisively what you do not need.
In Layer 5, the notes that are truly powerful and exciting for you are mixed with other pieces of content to create new ideas.
"To attain knowledge, add things every day. To attain wisdom, remove things every day" - Lao Tzu
A Notion tool
I built this amazing tool to improve my learning process and I am sharing it now.
It is a compilation of the most effective note-taking methods out there such as the Cornell Method, Feynman Technique, Outline Method, Boxing Method, and more…
Using these proven methods you will not only understand the concepts, but you will also learn better and learn faster!
The best of all is the FREE version includes the Progressive Summarization Technique with full instructions and a ready-to-use template. So try it now!
If you liked this post from Productivity Snippets, why not share it?
Did someone forward this to you? Join the +1000 weekly readers of Productivity Snippets. Each week I´ll break down a productivity framework, build a Notion-based tool, and share everything with you! No spam, ever. Just great stuff.
If you want to get these tips and tools in even shorter snippets. Follow me on Twitter. I post daily, the best productivity and growth tips I find out there.