Dan Naden
craftsman

Read for Depth and Understanding

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If you’ve read The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to our Brains, you understand the changing state of our attention. We are perpetually distracted and bombarded by more messages than we could possible digest. In some ways, advertisers had a much easier job reaching their audience in the 1970s. 

Today, we live in a world of superficial skimming. It is a busy businessman glancing at the headlines while he waits for the stoplight to turn green. God help us that he puts the phone down as he starts to accelerate.

It is the soccer Mom, getting sucked into her friend’s Pinterest feed, looking for inspiration for her annual Christmas party; a party that absolutely, positively must be better than last year’s version.

It is the tween sifting through last night’s Snapchat’s posts, trying to catch up on the latest and greatest with her circle of friends. Missing out on anything, even the goofiest, silliest nonsense is non-negotiable.

It is the executive, falling prey to social media chatter about his company and failing to craft a defensible strategy to stay relevant in a competitive industry.

When the last time you’ve seen someone in a waiting room reading a book? Or just sitting there thinking? The spaces ‘in between’ are now being held hostage. 

Let’s bring back the craftsmen. Let’s bring back the masters of a craft. Cheers to the men or women who unplug, choosing to read, research and go deep on a topic.

If we ever see the day when libraries teeter on the brink of extinction, danger lies ahead. Open a book, go deep and gain understanding. Dare to be different. Let everyone else flick, swipe and like all things superficial, ephemeral, and forgettable.

You, however, want more. You want mastery.

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Until next time,

Dan Naden

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