Since starting my personal development journey one of the biggest game-changers for me was coming across the skill of speed reading. I hear you saying, “but doesn’t that reduce your comprehension?”
Well, the common myth is that by reading quicker your comprehension drops, this may be the case for some but, by increasing your reading speed your comprehension increases, this is due to you being fully focused on the task at hand and not letting your mind wander, when you read at the speed at which you talk, you effectively end up boring your brain. In this post I’m going to show you how I read 1 book per week.
Don’t Be Average
The average person reads at around 200 to 250 words per minute and speaks at around 150-160 words per minute so it’s not much quicker reading…this is called sub vocalisation.
Subvocalization, or silent speech, is the internal speech typically made when reading; it provides the sound of the word as it is read…but when you realise that you can achieve a reading speed of 800wpm or even more then that opens up a whole new level of reading.
“This process of subvocalization can actually slow down your reading speed, because you’re trying to pronounce each word in your mind.” Justin Hammond
Save Your Time
If you were able to double your reading speed, going on the average reading speed of 250wpm imagine if you were able to increase that to 500wpm and save 1 hour per day reading, remember its not only books we consume, its emails, memes, magazines, blogs etc we are continually consuming content and by just saving 1 hour per day for a year it equates to 365 hours… break that down even more 365 / 9 (average workday) = 40
By saving 1 hour a day that equates to 40 work weeks…Imagine what you could achieve with that extra time, whether it’s learning more, creating more there are so many opportunities available there when you have the time to do the things you want to do
It’s so easy to get caught up in work and earning money its easy to let things like reading and personal development slide, but what you have to remember is that just by having the time to work on the things that matter most to you can have a much higher ROI then working and unlimited earning potential.
Ask Yourself This
What was the last book you read?
How many books did you read last year?
When was the last time you took a reading class?
Most likely the last time you took a reading lesson you were around 7 years old when you were at school…once the skill of reading has been taught it’s never improved on since.
We are taught to read in our heads and to subvocalize which slows us down massively.
Think of your brain like a supercomputer, how much information can your brain consume in such a short amount of time…for instance, have you ever listened to an audiobook and sped it up…maybe to 1.5x or 1.75x or even 2x…how did it sound to you?
The faster you can learn, the faster you can earn
— Jim Kwik.
Adapt Or Get Left Behind
At first, it sounds slightly odd but it’s amazing how quick your mind adapts and you’re able to listen to books 2x the speed with ease…
The same thing applies to learning the art of speed reading… it’s the ability to be able to control the speed at which you read…so if there is a lot of fluff you can speed up and slow down for the important bits.
Tip: If you find yourself re-reading the same pages or getting to the end of a chapter and thinking, I don’t remember what I just read, the simple and effective way of overcoming that controlling the state in which you are in.
What I mean by the state is, if you are fatigued and just reading to send yourself to sleep it’s not surprising you are not able to recall the information
Change the state in which you are in and how you approach reading, try sitting up straight and approaching learning with the feeling of excitement, think back to your school days, what was the main emotion you felt in class? Most people would probably say bored if your state is bored your mind is going to seek entertainment elsewhere and not be concentrating on the task at hand
To remember things, it’s much easier if the emotion is attached to whatever it is you are wanting to remember. Memories linked with strong emotions often become seared in the brain and are recalled easier.
There are a few techniques that can be used that can help boost comprehension
- Ask better questions – who, what why (novels) How can I use it, when will I use it, Why must I use this? (non-fiction)
- Note-taking – take notes throughout and at the end of your reading session summarise what you have learnt, also before continuing to read recall what you previously read in your last session
- Use the Pomodoro technique – read for 1 Pomodoro(25mins), write down what you remember
Also by using the Pomodoro technique when reading, it helps split the sessions up, we have a thing called recency and primacy when it comes to remembering, for example at a party you may remember the first few people’s names your meet and maybe a few at the end but generally those you met in the middle you forget…The same thing applies to learning.. this is why cramming for exams doesn’t work.
Is it possible to read a book in 1 day?
So if an average person reads 200-250 words in a minute and every page has around 300 words on average, that would mean that a 400-page book has around 120,000 words in it.
Now, divide the number of words by the number of words that an average person reads per minute (let’s take 200), we get 600 minutes. That would be 10 hours of reading.
So, yes, if you have 10 hours for reading in a day or if you read slightly faster than an average person, you can finish a 400-page book in one day…With ease, if you can double your current reading speed
So how do you read a book per week?
- Schedule in reading time, ideally, a time where you’re not fatigued, for me I schedule reading time after my morning coffee and shower, this is when I’m most alert and uninterrupted aim for at least 15 minutes per day ideally an hour. Scheduling in the reading time has been one of the main aspects that’s allowed me to read x1 book per week since the start of 2021 and long may it continue
2. Consistency applies to anything in life, if you want to get good at something then you have to be consistent. working your brain is like working any other muscle, over time you will notice a huge difference … its the compound effect…aiming for continual improvement imagine what 1% improvement per day would look like over the course of 5 years…10 years…
“Most people overestimate what they can achieve in a year and underestimate what they can achieve in ten years.”
Providing you are always learning, always improving you will inevitably improve, the question is can you stay consistent?
Thanks for taking the time to read – much appreciated I understand that time is our most valuable asset
If you are ready to take your life to the next level, unlock your true potential you can book a call here: bit.ly/3EA4yoM what’s holding you back?
Maybe you feel you aren’t ready, or not good enough, maybe you feel something is holding you back from going after those goals but don’t know what I can help!
Helping you gain clarity, breaking down those limiting beliefs that are holding you back so you can progress your work and life goals with confidence
ultimately you can take a speed reading course, here’s one that I’ve I can recommend HERE: https://tinyurl.com/5n794b92
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