A Personal Bible: how to collect and review life’s most valuable lessons

I read a lot, but I forget even more. Frustrated with this forgetting, I began to save my favorite readings into Evernote. Blog posts. Book excerpts. Forum threads. But once inside Evernote, all this wisdom was lost in the crowd, rarely to be seen again. I didn’t have a reliable way to remind myself of what to review, and when.

So I created a Personal Bible.

My Personal Bible is a Microsoft Word document of my favorite text from over the years. Passages and sentences and reminders that I want to re-read and re-re-read. Whenever I have an aha! moment with text, I save it to my Bible. From David Brooks columns to Malcolm Gladwell passages, from bucket lists to the Beatitudes, from writing advice to religious anecdotes. I try to read from it every day. Even just a few sentences.

If we use the computer as an analogy, regular reading of my Personal Bible helps keep life’s important lessons loaded onto my mind’s RAM. Lying just beneath conscious thought, ready for immediate use.

Here’s the latest version. Click to download my Personal Bible.

I load this Word document onto my Kindle and iPhone and update it every few weeks. This is an ongoing habit of mine.

You may find some gems that you like. Better yet, I hope you’re inspired to create your own! If you create one, please share it with us. I’d love to see what you collect and curate for yourself. Everyone could benefit from this practice. We’ve all read stuff that proverbially blows our minds, but only in the moment. And then we forget all about it. Like falling in love on the first date, only to never see the person again. Too sad for me :\

Thanks for reading!

PS. I love quotes, but my Personal Bible has very few of them, because I have a separate process for storing and memorizing quotes which I’ll share later

Hi! I write about habits and spirituality and random whatevers. Click here to see the daily habits that I track. Find me on Twitter @kgao.