Inspiring People: Sacha Chua, the Thinker who Sketches

I just spent a few minutes browsing through Google Helpouts. Something in between a youtube tutorial (my life wouldn’t be the same without it), a Google Hangout and an online course (like Coursera or Udacity).

And I just found the inspiring Sacha Chua who doodles, thinks and is in general training herself to be a better learner.

On her blog, Sacha writes and doodles about a series of fascinating things such as high energy and low energy activities (I love that outlining is an item and then skimming books and processing are different activities!)

Low-energy-versus-high-energy_thumb

and mapping what she learns so she can remember more things. I find this particularly interesting because I also remember things better if I write them down. Sometimes I actually feel I think better when I write down things. Imagine the knowledge I could accumulate if I actually revisited my notes.

A trick I used when I was in school and had to remember lists of names, towns, facts, years, species of plants was to write them all down on a piece of paper and then stuck it on my bedroom door. I would never actually properly sit down and learn the items, just go about my life and then, 2 weeks, 1 month later when I had my exam I would magically remember 90% of it. I should re-test this.

Mapping-what-you-know-640x497

 

Thank you for blogging, Sacha.

 

3 Comments

  • Sacha Chua says:

    Thanks for reaching out and for sharing! =) Yeah, splitting something like reading or writing into sub-activities with different energy requirements lets me squish parts of it into my low-energy times. Little things matter.

    I find that writing or drawing things helps me think in bigger and bigger chunks, which is great for untangling tough questions or working on interesting projects. I’d love to learn from your experience as you practise taking notes!

    • ina says:

      Thanks for the comment!

      Well, I started creating maps on printer paper to organize my workload and thoughts I want to share in meetings. The best part about it is that is prints into your brain and I feel it simplifies both my work and my discourse.

      Do you use a graphic tablet to draw or do you also sketch your thoughts on paper and scan them afterwards?

  • Sacha Chua says:

    I do both. I find that paper works better for me when I’m relaxing or when I need to see the overview while I’m drawing, but I like drawing digitally too because I can organize my thoughts more cleanly and I can use more colours. =) Here are some notes I have on making paper notes, and more details about the tools I use. Hope that helps!

    Have you tried using sketches and visual notes to help simplify life (in addition to simplifying work)? It’s pretty handy. =) I just came back from a month-long trip, and I’m looking forward to reflecting on the things I’ve learned and how I’m going to further simplify my day-to-day life.

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