Submissive journaling is not just about writing a diary. Journaling is what you want it to be. It can be lists of things, thoughts, rants, collections, habit tracking and so much more. It can also be a big part of your personal growth and self-discovery. One of the best ways to do that is through reading. Today let's talk about using your journal for book notes.

If you're anything like me, you took notes in school. If you were renting the books, you couldn't write in them, but as soon as I started buying the books for college the highlighter became my best friend. And in that moment my ability to retain the information that I had read went down. This habit continued through my first couple of years in Submissive Guide work and the reviews that I did had to be done almost immediately after reading the book so that I could remember what I read. It's possible some of this is because my memory isn't what it used to be since being diagnosed with hypothyroidism and Celiac Disease (both impact memory). In any case, I needed a way to remember what I had read and an ah-ha moment came about at the beginning of this year that I should go back to making book notes.

When Should You Take Notes

  • If it's a book that is meant to teach you something
  • If it inspires you
  • If  you'll need to refer to what you learned in some way later

How Book Notes Help You Get More Out of Reading

There are a lot of books on BDSM and submission out there, and if you enjoy reading and learning you'll be pouring through all that information pretty quickly. But not all of it will stick or be remembered. So taking notes on what you are reading and forming your own opinions along the way is a helpful tool for any submissive who uses journaling for personal growth.

Writing something down makes it much more likely that you'll remember it

, and perhaps even use the knowledge versus just reading it. Also, if you are in the frame of mind that you will be taking notes on your reading you will read with more purpose, analyzing what you are reading carefully and then deciding what you annotate about it. The more you engage in what you are reading the more is retained.

The Way I Take Book Notes

There are many ways to take notes and everyone has a preferred method.  I'm going to share with you today, my favorite way to take book notes. I've developed it over the last few years but was inspired by someone on Youtube that was using it to take college textbook notes so she could get the most money back from the return of those books. (If you don't know, the value of your textbook returns are higher if they are closer to 'like-new' condition.)

My note-taking method uses post-it notes and a couple different color pens. There are 4 colors of post-its that I use.

Yellow - Thoughts, questions and blog post inspiration

Pink - Important concepts and observations - in my own words

Green - Direct quotes

Blue - Vocabulary and definitions

The note-taking process goes something like this:

  1. Read the section. Take notes on post-its using key above.
  2. When finished reading, spread the stickies out on a flat surface.
  3. Rearrange in any order that is logical; this is the order they will be written. (Note: the way the author has written may not be the logical way for you, feel free to change it!)
  4. Write terms and vocabulary first.
  5. Write direct quotes in a different color so that they stand out.

There you go. I know my process is probably more in-depth than many of you do and that's okay. There are a lot of ways to take notes on what you are reading and the point is to find a method that works for you and will help build your knowledge and improve your level of information. Become more informed and you'll love knowing that what you've read is being retained and used to improve your life.

How do you take notes? Do you think writing notes about what you have read helps your submission?