In my online course Building a Second Brain, I teach people how to create an external repository of their best ideas, knowledge, and experiences, called a “second brain.”

But one of the most common questions I receive is, “Why should I?”

In this article I’ll summarize the 7 main capabilities that a second brain gives you. These are the 7 best reasons you should consider creating one for yourself.


  1. Consistently move your projects and goals to completion

It’s difficult to get things done when your mind is bogged down trying to remember trivial details. By organizing your knowledge outside your head, you free yourself to execute more effectively in the moment. You can spin up and complete your projects far faster, because you’re starting with a collection of valuable material and reusing work you’ve already performed, instead of a blank page.

As you start to accomplish your goals at a steady clip, your creative confidence will be unleashed, allowing you to take on even bigger challenges.

  1. Establish a creative process that helps you reliably produce your best work

We live in an economy driven by creativity, and yet for many people, creativity is something unpredictable and mysterious. Immersing ourselves in a pool of rich triggers, associations, questions, and ideas we’ve collected over time, we can more reliably spark our own inspiration and creativity when we most need it.

A second brain is the home of your creative process, a series of habits and routines for consistently publishing your work to the world, without overthinking it or being too perfectionistic.

  1. Transform your personal knowledge into income and opportunities

We are living in the greatest age of entrepreneurship the world has ever seen. By publishing your knowledge in small bits online, it is easier than ever to find an audience, gain a following, and even create new income streams. Whether this becomes a business or just a hobby, you’ll find yourself with countless new opportunities and career options.

With all your best ideas, insights, and research at your fingertips, you’ll be able to ride the wave of a rapidly expanding knowledge-based economy.


  1. Enhance your thinking and uncover unexpected patterns and connections between ideas

In a knowledge economy, the trajectory of your career depends a lot on the quality of your thinking. Instead of always trying to think of something brilliant on the spot, you can collect the best stories, images, observations, anecdotes, and metaphors in one central place, priming your imagination and revealing connections between ideas.

Being able to recognize the larger patterns in what is happening allows you to see trends that no one else sees and recognize opportunities before anyone else.

  1. Reduce stress, Fear of Missing Out, and “information overload”

The amount of information we are now expected to consume and keep track of is staggering. By outsourcing the job of remembering to an external tool, we gain the peace of mind of knowing exactly what to do with each piece of incoming information, and the confidence that it will never be forgotten. We can better manage our fears and anxieties by getting them out of our head and making a plan to address them.

By expertly curating and managing your personal information stream, you can make sense of the huge volume of information you encounter each day, and transform information overload into a clear mind.

  1. Develop valuable expertise and credibility for a new job, career, or business

Your greatest asset is the knowledge you’ve gained through your experience. But until others have a way of accessing that knowledge without also taking your time, you’ll be chained to a desk. The great potential of making your knowledge tangible is that it frees you to spend your life as you want, while still providing value to others.

By cultivating a collection of knowledge that belongs to you and that you take from job to job, an economy of frequent job changes becomes an opportunity for learning instead of a threat.

  1. Unlock the full value of the wealth of learning resources all around you

We are living through an explosion of online learning resources – online courses, webinars, books, articles, forums, podcasts, and other kinds of content offer us priceless knowledge for free or at affordable prices. But without a way to break this knowledge into smaller pieces, and store it until we need it, all this learning can feel like a waste of time and money.

A second brain helps you take control of your own learning, by filtering and curating the most valuable bits you encounter and saving them in a searchable format. Reading and learning become more enjoyable, and therefore effective, when we know that every potentially useful idea is being preserved.

Learn more about the course at

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