Reading Doesn't Need To Be Hacked

I am one of those people that constantly strives to do things better. Always looking out for tips that help get things done simpler, and also seeking simplifications to processes that Kia Kamgar would be proud of. Yet, there are things that seem long-winded, perhaps a little messy, but just need to be left alone.

When looking for all these gains there is a tendency to go a little too far. You see tech bros and CEO’s trying far too hard to hack everything to find gains. Some which make perfect sense, shaving some time here and there, particularly in a busy life, pays for itself in a short period of time. However some are changed just for changing sake.

As Anna Winer puts it in Uncanny Valley “Reading wasn’t about mainlining information. The tech industry’s efficiency fetish was so dreary”. Some things just need to be slow and not the most efficient way of doing things. Yet provide the best return for your investment. Take reading for example, more and more services are sprouting up to cut all the corners and give you the book in a faction of the time it takes to read. This might pay off for some, but hacking reading seems like something that wouldn’t be that useful.

The joy is in the reading. Absorbing the information at your pace, and thinking about things as you read them. Much like trimming the silence from your podcasts (don’t do that either) often it is reading between the lines and applying your experiences that provide the most feedback. I could have dictated this whole blog post instead of writing it out. Or perhaps recored it as a voice note. Yet, the process of writing it out, editing and trimming along with everything else that goes into it is as enjoyable as the result.

Simplifying processes saves not only time and effort, but typically money. Meaning, you win on all fronts and improve your life for the better. However, this doesn’t apply to everything, you can’t hack some things, and they are just better left alone.

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