Learn how speed reading can save time and improve reading comprehension
Think about how much you read every day.
Maybe you are reading a newspaper to find out what’s going on in the world. You’re looking at countless emails from your colleagues. And on a normal day, you read books, reports, offers, periodicals and letters.
Looking at the overall picture, we see reading action is the skill we use most about learning. It is also a skill that naturally settles in most of us when we turn 12. As a result, if we can read and understand books, we must be good readers, right?
Maybe this is not the case. When we consider the time we spend for reading in our daily life, perhaps we can improve or we need to improve our skills.
So what does it mean to be a better reader? While being faster and more effective in reading, it still passes through the ability to understand what you’re reading!
How Do We Read
Although you spend most of the day reading, have you ever thought about how you read? How do your eyes understand letter shapes and how do they put these letters into sentence forms that you can understand?
Actually, when you think about this subject, you realize that reading is a very complex skill. Earlier, scientists believed that both eyes focused on certain letters in words while reading. Recent research has shown that this is not the case.
Scientists believe that in their current research, each eye focuses on different letters at the same time, usually focusing on two separate characters. The brain combines these two images to form the word form. This happens almost instantly while browsing through the pages.
Advantages of Fast Reading
Many people read at an average of 250 words per minute. This means that it takes 1-2 minutes to read an average page in a book or document.
However, imagine you are speeding up to 500 words per minute. You can scan all content in half the time. You can then perform other tasks with the remaining time or have an extra few minutes to rest or let off stress.
Another advantage of speed reading is that you can better understand the overall structure of the argument. This will provide understanding the “big picture” that will benefit you greatly in your business and career.
Speed reading is a useful and valuable skill. However, there may be situations where it is not appropriate to use this technique. For example, reading important or compelling texts slowly will allow you to fully understand all the details.
Overcoming Weak Reading Habits
If you are like many other people, you have one or more reading habits that slow you down. Being a better reader requires learning new, effective reading methods by defeating these bad habits.
Below we discuss the most common bad reading habits and how we can beat them.
Internal vocalization is the habit of vocalize every word you read in your mind. Many people do this somehow.
When you voice it inside, you will hear the words spoken in your brain. This takes more time than necessary, because you can understand a word faster than you say.
To mute the sound in your mind, you must first realize that there is sound (how did you read the first part of this article?) And then you should practice on “not speaking”. When you start reading, tell yourself that you will not use your inner voice. You should study this until the bad habit disappears. It will be useful to read the words in blocks because it is more difficult to speak the blocks. (See below for more on this topic)
Even eliminating your inner voice can significantly increase your reading speed. Otherwise, you will stay on average 250-350 words per minute, which is the same speed as speech. The only way to overcome this barrier is to avoid saying words one by one in your mind.
Reading literally is not just slow. At the same time, when you concentrate on individual words, you often miss the subject. People who read each word in a separate unit understand less than those who quickly read the words in blocks. (Think about how your eyes move as you read this article. Are you reading each word or reading in blocks of two, three or five words?)
Try increasing the number of words you read at once. You can also significantly increase the number of words when you read the text with single focus, keeping the text closer to your eyes. The more words you read in each block, the faster you can read!
Inefficient Eye Movement
Slow readers tend to focus on each word and progress on each line. The eye can cover about 4 centimeters of space at once, which corresponds to about four or five words. Regarding this fact, many of the readers do not use their environmental views to see the words at the end of each line.
To overcome this problem, “soften” your look while reading – when you relax your face and widen your look, you begin to see words in blocks rather than as separate units. As you get better at this process, your eyes will move even faster on the page.
When you reach the end of the line, your environmental opinion will take over to see the last phrase. In this way you can quickly scan and move to the next line quickly.
Regression is re-reading of texts unnecessary.
People sometimes want to go back to the words they read and even to make sure they read it correctly. When you perform the reversal behavior like this, you will lose the flow and structure of the text, and your understanding of the entire text may be reduced.
Be very careful with regression and avoid rereading texts unless it is really necessary.
Use a pointer in the lines you read to reduce the number of times your eyes go to the previous sentence. This can be your finger or a pen. Your eyes will follow the tip of the pointer and will help reduce reversal. Using this method, your reading speed depends on how fast you move the pointer.
If you are trying to read while the TV is on, you know that it is quite difficult to concentrate on the sentence or even the word. Reading should be carried out in an environment with minimal external disturbances.
To increase your concentration as you read, stop doing multiple jobs at the same time as you read and remove distractions as much as possible. This is especially important because when you are putting together the word blocks and trying to suppress your inner voice, you may find that you have read a few pages and do not fully understand anything.
Pay attention to “internal distractions” as well. If you’re reviving a discussion in your mind or thinking about what to do for dinner, this will limit your ability to process information.
The inner voice actually keeps the brain connected to what you are reading and people can therefore say that they are watching and reading TV at the same time. To be an effective reader, you should avoid this.
Approaching Reading Linearly
We were taught to read each word, sentence, paragraph and page in order, reading from left to right and down.
When you do this, you pay the same attention to supportive information in addition to basic information. (Usually more information is provided to you than you really need to know.)
To overcome this, you can scan the titles on the pages and look at the text and in bold text. There is no rule that you need to read the entire text to grasp what the author wants to tell. Therefore, you can quickly scan and decide what is required and what is not necessary. Take a quick look and focus only on the basics.
As you read, try to identify extra information by showing the author’s reason for writing. If you understand what you want to tell, you don’t need to read examples or anecdotes. Similarly, decide what to read again. Rereading an important paragraph is much better than reading eight paragraphs describing the same subject.
Keys to Speed Reading Success
Knowing the “how” to read fast is just the first step. To get good at speed reading, you have to practice. We’ve provided a few tips below to eliminate your poor reading habits and specialize in speed reading skills.
Practice, practice, practice – you should use your skills regularly. It took a few years to study and it will take time to improve your reading skills.
Choose easy texts to get started – don’t choose compelling books when you start reading fast. Read texts that you can understand and enjoy even if you read quickly, such as novels or travel articles.
Do speed reading correctly – you may not be able to use speed reading in everything you read.
Legal documents, annual reports or emails you receive from your loved ones – it will be better to read them carefully and using internal voice.
If you need to fully understand the message, memorize information, discuss details, or enjoy what the author wants to tell, speed reading may be the wrong approach.
Use a pointer or similar tool to increase your reading speed – when you quickly pull a piece of paper down the bottom of the page or quickly move your finger over the text, you force your eyes and brain to follow.
Take a step back and use the text structure – to understand the text structure and how it is organized; This method can be used to scan information, search for words written in bold, and identify where the author moves from one topic to another.
It is important to mark your current reading speed when you start reading fast. In this way, you can see if your work is working and when you are a fast reader, you can influence your family and friends.
Speed reading is a skill that can be learned. It usually involves defeating the bad habits you have developed since you learned to read. It is not only important to become a fast reader – you must also become a more effective reader.
There are some good techniques that you can apply while reading speed, such as reading words with blocks and breaking the inner voice habit.
Whichever technique you apply, you should always be aware of your reading intent and decide whether speed reading is the most appropriate approach.
When properly implemented and diligently studied, speed reading significantly increases your overall efficiency, saves time and allows you to work effectively in other areas.