3 ways to build habits

Can you imagine what life would be like if you could read and write, speak and listen? You’re right, no one has to do that nowadays. We already have computers for doing all these things better, quicker and more accurately than humans.

So I’m asking you: why do you even need reading, writing, speaking or listening skills? You don’t, right? No, they’re not useless. They work amazingly well when used the LLS way – The Different Way of Thinking About Reading, Writing, Speaking And Listening.

I’ve been reading a lot this past year, and I’ve realized that the way you read can have a significant effect on your memory. The biggest problem I see with most people is that they use their smartphones or laptops as a crutch for their memory. They take notes on their computer or phone, and then use those devices to reference what they wrote later on.

This is a bad habit because it’s not taking full advantage of your brain’s ability to remember things so let’s try and make a good habit from a bad habit and remove yourself from doing this. That is the one reading tip that I can give you. By using your phone you are telling yourself to not worry about thinking or working. Try writing shorthand notes first.

Make listening to your number one priority

We have all heard it said that the average person spends only six minutes a day listening. I read that and thought, “That’s impossible.” I listen to music, talk on the phone, work in my office, and can’t believe that six minutes is all that I’m doing during a day. But according to the experts and various studies from businesses like Xerox, it’s not far off.

The problem with this is listening is one of our most important life skills. It’s been said that 80 percent of communication is non-verbal, which means you’re getting most of the message from what someone says by reading their body language and tone of voice. That only leaves 20 percent for actual words spoken.

This is why it’s so important to focus on listening rather than worrying about what you’re going to say next or about how you’re going to look while you’re talking. Listening shows respect for the speaker and creates trust between two people or groups. In short, paying attention to what someone else has to say lets them know you care about what they think or feel.

Dull textbooks, notes, and phone books are not your friends

I’m not saying you should throw out your textbooks and notes, but do take opportunities to arrange them so they’re easy to find when you need them. And if things aren’t critical, toss some of the less important materials. Tossing is good because it’s a natural part of the learning process. Your brain likes to connect things based on how they’re presented — a process called encoding — and so it doesn’t hurt to change up the ways you present information.

If your phone book is in a pile with some papers and your textbook is on top of a shelf, it’s easier to link phone numbers with names than if everything is neatly arranged in alphabetical order. It’s a small thing, but it can make a big difference. The same applies to those little scraps of paper you have lying around that have just a phone number or address on them.

You might have saved them because you think you’ll need them someday, but odds are good that you won’t. So toss ’em! On the other hand, many things don’t fit into neat piles or containers. For example, I like putting my takeout menus in my backpack so I always have something pleasant to read while I’m waiting for my order.

Related: 25 books to read before you die

The world is always changing. New technology, new ways of thinking, new resources come and go every day. The Internet is a brilliant example of this constant change and a reflection of our ever-evolving culture. It has been the single most influential tool in our cultural development since its inception, changing everything from marketing to travel, entertainment education.

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