I used to be able to read the whole internet, but now that I’m building Kumbu, it’s more difficult for me to keep up with market and industry trends. Here’s what I do to stay in touch.
You don’t have to read everything
Step 1: Be Async
Realtime is overrated. Missing Out is overrated. If you’re busy doing something, most news can wait. In 24 hours, most of the news becomes irrelevant, and it’s fine to miss it.
Which is why newsletters are a great choice to follow the news. Here’s how I do it:
I have a separate address for newsletters, different from my main email
I subscribe with enthusiasm, and am quick to unsubscribe if there is no value after a few issues
I read newsletters in one batch, almost every day. I used to have everything in Google Reader (RIP), but I find that newsletter currently strike the right balance between the number of “items” you have to deal with (ie say 1 issue per day/week) and the ability to quickly glance and notice if there’s anything of interest.
Step 2: Daily-ish triage
Every day, or so, I read most newsletters from the day before. This is the only email account where I sort things from older to newer
If I don’t feel like reading an issue, I archive it immediately
Any link that looks remotely interesting, I add to my read it later pile. I use pinboard.in, and this workflow to achieve this — unfurling the URL ensures that the original link is saved, and not a minified or temporary link.
I then archive the newsletter issue
That’s it. I don’t read the articles, and I try to get this inbox to 0 in less than 20mn each day
Step 3: Weekly-ish reading
Every week I set aside about an hour, and going through my unread list, read annotate and share relevant articles. I find that active reading (either through sharing, or annotating articles) provides most value. If I can’t come up with a takeaway for our business, it’s usually not that valuable to me. If I find something interesting to share, I usually add it to my buffer.
Here’s what I currently read
The following are my favorite business/startups related newsletters