I got sent some very dull trade magazines back when I was a broadcast systems consultant. A typical front page headline would be “New metadata schema agreed”.
Most of these would go straight in the recycle bin. However, as I was a highly paid consultant I felt I needed to do something to keep up with the industry I was consulting to. I decided the minimum I could commit to was to read the Technology section of the weekly magazine, Broadcast.
Now, Broadcast magazine’s technology ‘section’ was actually a single page. Despite this, I found I was leaving copies of it to pile up, waiting to be read.
What I realised is that if you reach the point where you have a backlog of three months of unread magazines in which you only need to read a single page, it’s probably a good sign that you’re in the wrong line of work. The love has gone and it’s time to move on.
Clients have reported similar experiences of leaving Architect Journal, or whatever their trade magazine is, still in its clingfilm month after month.
Today, the stuff I read for fun is the stuff I read for my work. When you would be reading something even if it wasn’t related to your job or business, you know you’re on the right track.