There is just too much to read these days.
Even worse, there isn’t enough time to read it all.
Even so, I still try to read everything that I can get my hands onâ€”old and new marketing books, newspapers and magazines, e-mails, reports, and articles.
I even read books on how to read faster!
Here are three secret techniques to help you to read more quickly.
If I can learn them, anyone can!
(It helps to turn off the TV and radio when I read, because I can concentrate better. It may help you, too. Try it.)
The first two techniques will help you to fly through any reading that you have to do. You only will comprehend half of the material, but you will read it in just one-tenth of the time.
The first technique is used when what you are reading is long and complicated. Start by reading the first two paragraphs completely. Then, read only the first sentence of the following paragraphs. Finally, read the last two paragraphs completely. You will miss some details, but you will get a good overall feel for the material.
The second technique, “skimming,” is used when you are reading short articles. Sweep your eyes across every line of type. Even if you pick up only a few key words in every line, you still will get the general idea of what the article is about. “Skimming” is a great way to cut your reading time in half.
The third technique, “cluster reading,” will help you to read faster and comprehend more, but still not all of what you read. Instead of reading every word, like most people do, try reading in groups of three to four words. Train your eyes to see words in clusters. Concentrate on seeing three or four words at once. It may help to use your fingers to lead your eyes and help to keep you from going backwards (which will slow you down).
These techniques take practice, so don’t give up.
It’s worth the effort to learn how to read faster. With enough practice, you will be able to get caught up on your reading and it will take you less time to do it.
A great book that helped me a lot in this area is by Stanley D. Franks and is called Remember Everything You Read:The Evelyn Wood 7-Day Reading and Learning Program (Westminister, 1990).
What are you speed-reading today?