How to Read Books Fast
Books have always represented a source of knowledge, yet in the 21st century, they don’t carry as much power as they once did. Why? Because the internet and other sources of information and entertainment have taken their place. However, this doesn’t mean that books are a thing of the past, and there are still people that enjoy reading good literature. One literature piece can change your life in so many ways and reading an article can never be the same as reading a good book.
The main reason that people don’t read as much anymore is that reading books takes time. In the stressful times we are living in, most people have trouble finding time for their family and rest, which makes reading books almost impossible over and above that.
A major mistake that people make is that they see reading books as a burden. If they were to think of reading as a way to relax in their free time, they would enjoy books and their numerous benefits. Learning how to speed read seems like a great solution if you want to read faster. Imagine all the great things that could happen if you could get through a book in a few days. Faster reading allows you to cover more books and learn more things.
There are two main things that influence your ability to speed read – eye movement and mental focus. By getting these two sorted, you will be able to engage in an effective process and dismiss habits that are slowing you down.
Believe it or not, it is children that have both the will and ability to read faster than a regular adult. Still, children who are learning to read aren't familiar with a number of written words and relevant rules which can present a different kind of challenge. If you are a parent and your child is just developing an interest in books, we recommend that you check out the Children Learning Reading program and find more about effective techniques.
Let’s take a look at a few tips that will allow you to dismiss your bad reading habits and successfully read books fast.
Use a Pointer as a Powerful Instrument
One of the best ways to achieve better focus and engage in speed reading is by using a pointer or a pen to set the wanted pace and guide your eyes through the process. By underlying the text at the desired speed your eye muscles will evolve and manage to effectively follow up with it.
As we have mentioned above, eye movement and mental focus are the two things that influence your speed reading. Your best bet is to start with easier texts like travel magazines and engage in more complex literature every few days. The key thing is to practice and do at least an hour of reading every single day.
Increase Your Reading Time
You should exercise your brain and mental focus by reading for a longer time. If you are used to reading 30 minutes at a time, double the amount, and don’t close the book without at least 1 hour of effective reading.
A factor that plays a huge role in your ability to maintain focus is to think of reading as a fun activity, rather than as a burden or something that has to be done. Just as children do, you will be better at concentrating and engaging in something for a longer time if it is entertaining and enjoyable. Think of all the benefits you can obtain by reading a good book.
Skim and Scan Before Reading
One of the most effective methods in developing a good reading speed is to skim and scan the text before you read it. While this is most effective with books that are related to your studies, it can be done with novels and fiction as well – go over the main plot and dialogue points and then read the chapter at a faster pace. While this doesn’t mean that you should skip half the page, it simply allows you to move forward instead of getting confused by unexplained points that have no importance to the main plot.
One of the major mistakes that people make when reading is subvocalizing. By pronouncing the words in your head you will slow down your reading pace to the speed of speaking instead of reading. By avoiding subvocalization and being mindful about it, you will be able to read at least two times the speed as you normally would. Along with that, the chances of getting confused in the middle of the text are lower as well. Turn on some quiet music, or engage in chewing gum to distract yourself from the subvocalization urge.
Span Phrases Instead of Words
Your eyes can cover up to nine words at a time which means that there is absolutely no point in reading word by word. Instead, try to cover phrases that sound logical and contain at least a few words. This will increase your reading speed, but you still should still start with easier texts like magazines and newsletter and move to more demanding literature once you feel ready.
As the Children Learning Reading program suggests, re-reading is an effective technique when you are teaching your child this critical skill, but it is unnecessary once you are an adult. In fact, re-reading may only confuse you and slow down your reading pace. While there might be some confusing parts in the text you are reading, you should deal with those once you are done with the chapter or completely ignore them if they don’t seem connected to the main plot.
Speed reading is a complex yet achievable skill; all you need is practice and will power to do it. While some people read faster by nature, others have a slower pace mostly due to re-reading and subvocalization habits. By avoiding negative habits and implementing positive ones like reading more and a few words at the time, you will become a master reader and be able to read a few books every month.