There is always this question, how is it I am able to read so fast, so quickly and so easily without problems?
Well follow these 10 steps BEFORE you read a particular book
- Listen multiple versions of the book summary on youtube
There are many youtubers who will summarize the book for you. Listen to it. It will make your understanding of the book better.
- Read multiple Book Summary Online of the same book online
I have always found reading a one page book summary as good as spending hours and hours of reading a book.
- Subscribe to Book Summary Apps
There are many online like Four Minute Book, Instaread Book Summaries, Joosr where you can read or listen to a complete book summary. Blinkist is the one I highly recommend
- Amazon.com Reviews
Before buying a book read the detailed 5-Star, 4-Star, 3-Star, 2-Star & 1-Star reviews — especially the most useful rated ones. It will give you a balanced view of the book with all the points.
- MP3’s & Youtube Videos
Now a days, the entire book comes in a readable or watchable format. Do you know how easy it is to listen to a book when you drive, go to the toilet or just do some house work? I used to literally listen to one full book when going on my long runs of 30 kms. In 3 hours, I would complete almost 50% of the entire book. (However, do this if you are running where there is no traffic or you are running in a running track)
- The Scanning Ritual
So after you have done the above, when you purchase the book, read the index, scan through the chapters and check for the chapter summary. The Heading of each chapter will give you an idea what the book is all about and the chapter summary will give you the main points of each chapter.
- Follow the 80–20 Rule
- I want you to take a particular chapter.
-Quickly check how many pages are there.
-Then look at every paragraph and quickly scan through it.
-See what line or word stand out.
-Do it once or twice and keep moving on.
-At the end of the chapter see what stood out in your head.
-I can assure you one thing — 80% of the content can be summarized into 20% of its actual size.
If you don’t believe me — do this strategy first and ask yourself what did you learn. Then read through it slowly word-for-word and see if there is any difference.
I can assure you, you will see what I have stated is true
- Read Word-For-Word NEVER!!!
When I was young, I used to read word-for-word.
Guess what — it didn’t amount to anything or any use. Even today, I wonder what in the world did I learn, read and remember?
The answer is nothing.
Read books — each and every line & paragraph FAST. Make this a habit. See what words JUMP out of the page. And eventually you will be a Fast Reader. Majority of the words and information shared in a book — is useless (unless of course it is a technical book)
- Your Environment Matters
It is NOT possible to read with speed, focus and concentration if there is noise, distraction and people. Make sure you are sitting in a quiet place alone and away from everyone. Then and only then you will be able to read at this level of intensity.
- A Plan, Target, Decision & Strategy Matters
If you want to read a book you need to first have a plan.
I normally make my plan the night before that the next day I would read 1, 2 or 3 books.
Once that plan was made, I would keep everything ready for the following day.
When I say have a target —it would be very specific & measure-able — like reading 20 pages per hour or 1 page per minute — whatever did match my ability with regards to the book.
Then you need to make a decision — no matter what I will complete this book.
Then you need to have a strategy in mind — Go to some place where no one will disturb you where it will support you to reading the book.
Let me share my strategy
I would drive down 30 minutes to a place — where I knew 100% the traffic going back home would waste a hour of my time. So once I drove down to that location (coffee shop), I would order my cup of coffee (Which would always be over-priced — so that wasting it would pain me), I would ensure that I took a table slot which was in one remote corner and I would start reading the book with a pencil, note book and ruler with me. Oh and guess what — my smartphone would be left at home. So I would have no other choice BUT to read and complete the target.
So if you were to do these 10 steps, I can assure you, you WILL be able to read 300 pages in one single sitting.
Oh yeah, and as a bonus, if you want to remember and recollect the information that you have just heard or gone through it — follow the Richard Feynman method — Think you have to teach 3 year olds what you just learnt — how would you do this?
That will force you to process the information in a way that not only others will understand — you will never forget what you just processed in your head.