Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Read More in Less Time

Want to read more in less time? There are hundreds of websites and books that offer tips and ideas for increasing your reading speed (ironically, I've been reading a book called How to Speed Read off and on for over 12 years now and have yet to finish it), but there's really only a few things you need to know about speed reading: Shorten eye movement, read in context, and keep moving.

I've been reading a number of puritan authors this year (see "Join the Puritan Challenge" button on the right side of this blog). The reading is excellent, but as you can imagine, the puritan language can be tedious at times.

So Here's a trick I've been using lately that is especially helpful with books that are more challenging to read:

I set a timer for 5 minutes, first thing in the morning, and read as fast as I can, forcing out all distractions during those 5 minutes. When I say fast, I mean your eyes should be moving so fast it feels like they are about to fly off the page, faster than you have ever read before. Five minutes may not sound like much, but In that short amount of time, I cover 7-9 pages a day from challenging works, which becomes 240 pages a month, which is the average length for a book. By doing this you can read 12 books a year, which is far bellow what most people read in a year. And since it is just 5 minutes, your concentration stays heightened and comprehension is actually higher than when reading at a slower rate. You can try this with any book, though I've found it doesn't work as well with fiction, nor do I desire to speed read fiction since the story is my timer with fiction. You will likely cover more than 7-9 pages when reading non-puritan authors (I'm thinking I should apply this method to my unfinished speed reading book). Try it and see if it works.

1 comment:

John and Pam said...

So many books, so little time :)