I started to notice that I have been looking at non-fiction books the wrong way. While I see fiction books as entertainment, non-fiction has a utilitarian purpose. They act like a tool. They serve a concrete purpose of allowing me to grow. This can be a technical book teaching me a coding language, or a managerial book about how to run meetings. By the end of it, I should know a bit more than I knew before. But if I look at what we normally associate with tools, I have failed to put these books to good use. Look at a hammer, or a shovel. A hammer that was put to good use will look worned. It will have marks on the handle and its head will likely be chipped. But when I look at many books I have read they look immaculate. No notes taken, no post-its, no underlines. It’s as if no one ever looked at it.
I am changing this.