Read with the Intent to Learn; Milk It

During JJL’06, our recent learning forum held in September, I tried something different with my reading habits, specifically with reading blogs. As anyone who has discovered the blogging phenomena knows, it can get addictive very, very quickly.

However I do believe it is a good addiction. Reading is up there in the category of “good no matter what,” just like Learning. The content counts for something, sure. However it is the practice of it that’s more important; it is in the reading, and in the learning that you exercise your powers to be the all of you. With reading and learning we can dip in and out of all of those four capacities I talk about in MWA; intellectual, emotional, spiritual, and physical. We can connect them in this catalytic converter action series which results in a far better attitude for us; an optimistic take on life and our part in it.

Soon after you discover blogs, you’ll run into blogs about blogging, and you’ll hear enough about RSS and feeds to learn to use an aggregator to read them.

Then, as inevitable as the coming of winter after fall, information overload sets in.

I’ve come to develop strong relationships with many bloggers, and there is absolutely no doubt that it is the bloggers of the Ho‘ohana Community who have given it the most visibility (yes, ironic as that sounds, visibility in virtual spaces). However it is also thanks to those relationships that I can now “mark all as read” in my bulging Bloglines aggregator without guilt or remorse when it gets too big for its britches, and for my brain.

Others will trump the virtues of learning to skim better, but I’ve tried it only to find that skimming is very unsatisfactory for me. I prefer to not read something at all than to skim it. Part of it is the author and writer in me. I fully understand what goes into writing and editing, and loving words, phrases, and sentences. I understand the thinking effort of articulation, and the spirit’s intention of writing as art. So, I take the leap of faith that published = past-edit noteworthy (okay, I know that can be naïve when it comes to blogs, but that’s me). Those thoughts of the nobility of writing come into my head pretty often when I try to skim, and skimming becomes very disrespectful for me.

If someone did take the time to write something, sleep on it and edit well, and then published it freely for the rest of the world to savor, I want to respect that. I want to savor. I want to read with the intent to learn.

Then, in the past several months, “nalu it” kept creeping into my consciousness, as this sequential part to read —> savor —> learn.” —> nalu it was the next step, to go with the flow such that new learning absolutely swallowed you up and pointed you to a possible new life’s pattern — and you allowed it to. More than that, you actually redesigned your habits to continually Nalu it without stress. That is where I’m at right now, and that is where I’ve invited you to keep me company in the process with this month’s ho‘ohana.

But let’s go back for a moment to the read —> savor —> learn.
Something had to replace the skimming. In September, “Milking it” was my replacement.

This has been a long introduction especially for you, my regular readers of Talking Story, to the article I did for today; yes, it must be Thursday! It’s called Milking it whole, not skim. Because you are here with me so often, I felt you’d appreciate the whole story, for it’s actually another prequel kind of chapter about JJL ’06, about 120 Ways and Counting, and now, about the wonder of our new Joyful Jubilant Learning Network.

And of course, about our ho‘ohana this month.

Please do click in and read Milking it whole, not skim, for I know you are a reader and a learner, and I am sure you will also want to reap benefits from this “September something” I tried with great personal results. It’s a productivity and retention practice that is extremely satisfying and fulfilling. Here’s the link:

Milking it whole, not skim

Update: mmm” the universe conspires, and the spirit receives with humility and gratitude”

After posting this today, I clicked in to read Tim Milburn’s article today for JJLN. It is called “Developing Powerful Partnerships.” If you are involved with any team dynamic at all right now, you must read it.

In the first comment to Tim’s article, Steve Sherlock pointed me to an article by Patti Digh called, “Polish your mud balls.” Writing artistry.

I am on my third reading of both of these two choices today; and my Inventory and Inking are robust! They are my candidates for the day’s Milking It, and I am more than satisfied. I need not look further on this, the 5th day of October. If you have not yet found your own something Milkable, I encourage you to visit Tim or Patti. If you already have, do bookmark their articles for another day in which you can drink deeply of some good, whole milk.

Other reading which may interest you: I admit this has been a journey for me! However, if you would, please read Milking it first, and then come back to these if you wish.

From November, 2005:

Blogs, and being reasonable with my own attentions

More on Blogging Attentions: The ROA Discussion

From May, 2005:

Writer’s Rewards

Shortcuts in using what you’ve read


  1. says

    Rosa, I am a cookie monster. Milk and cookies could be my downfall. It is not a coincidence I think that I do drink 2% milk. With all the milking available on the internet, I am getting my fill of good fat content and nourishment!

  2. says

    Be Fiercely Selfish With Your Time to Learn

    When I attend conferences I feel like I am on a seesaw: Up: They inspire me. I key into presentations and conversations with people I am newly meeting. New ideas float to the top of my consciousness so I will