Saturday, June 12, 2010
Learn to Read Faster With These Proven Yet Simple Methods
By Douglas Robert
If you think "speed reading" only works for some people, think again. Not only is it possible to learn to read faster, it's actually easy to do so. If you keep reading the way you learned as a child, you can't expect a vastly different result. Most people get stuck there.
But if you learn and implementation some new techniques, you can significantly improve your reading rate. One thing you'll need to remember though is this: for any improvement to last, you'll have to practice. That means using these techniques regularly.
Your very first step to faster reading is to get to grip on the material in advance. Gain an overview of the book you're about to read. Check out the front and back covers, as well as the inside sleeve of the dust jacket. This usually gives you an overview -- a general understanding of the material covered. Next, scan through the table of contents, introduction, the concluding chapter and any appendices included.
Your intention is to quickly piece together a framework of the text. This helps you make sense of the major points the author wants to convey. As you preview the material, create a mental mind map - a basic structure of the text as you understand it at this early juncture. What you're essentially doing is "framing" the material so your brain can more easily grasp it.
After scanning the major sections above, preview the most dominant visual components of the book, one chapter at a time. This includes titles, sub-titles, bold, italicized, highlighted or different colored text. Take note of anything that stands out on the page including text boxes, call-outs, photographs, charts and graphs, illustrations and so on. Remember, you are still in the previewing stage, so continue to scan at a rapid pace.
In just minutes, you can preview the entire text and have a broad grasp of the content in advance of reading every page. Previewing gives you the confidence to read faster, knowing that you're not going to miss out on any significant information. Now as you begin to read, you're doing so with a foundational understanding of the material presented.
You will learn to read faster simply by previewing the content and piecing together the structure of a book in your mind in advance. It simply means changing the way you were taught to read in the beginning.
Old habits are the number one obstacle to faster reading. Most of us learned words by sounding out individual letters, then syllables, then words and phrases. and it's this very process that causes most people to read at a rate far below their capacity. Change your ways and you can dramatically improve your reading speed. And the first habit to about with nonfiction material is to gain a structural overview of the content as a preliminary step.
As you venture into the actual reading of the text, begin to take in larger chunks of information. The brain has an amazing ability to absorb information rapidly, but many never expand beyond a basic reading level.
You can learn to read faster when you begin to scoop up phrases, lines, sentences and paragraphs in single scoops. Taking in bigger bites actually aids in comprehension because it provides contextual meaning. You're no longer reading individual words, but complete thoughts and ideas as units. As you descend down the written page, you are fully engaged and attentive.
Reading at a faster rate requires focus. You can't achieve breakthrough speeds without a concentrated effort.
Speed reading is active reading. That's why you need to look for clues as you go. With each new section, ask yourself -- What is the main idea here? Investigate as you proceed. Seek out the essential information by asking - why did the author include this segment?
Anyone can learn to read faster. Adopting these ideas and applying them habitually will make a dramatic difference in your reading speed. But like any other worthwhile skill, repetition is the key to turning simple information into real value for you.
Want to learn to read faster today? You absolutely can! All it takes are a few basic techniques and you can easily double or triple your reading rate. Anyone can do this -- what about YOU? Visit my site now for more FREE TIPS, techniques, tactics and helpful resources: http://www.speedreadtips.com
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