March 30th, 2022
Tips for Speed Reading
Most of us want to read, but it can be hard to find the time! There are always a thousand different things vying for our attention, leaving us very little room to sit down and read a book or an article for an hour or two. We may be able to squeeze out a few precious moments, but it’s not enough time to read a substantial amount and really get into what’s being read. So how can we make the most of the little time we have? That is where speed reading comes in! What is speed reading? Well, it’s exactly what it sounds like. It’s increasing the speed at which you can read by using a few different tactics. These tactics will still allow you to consume information and let you do it at a much faster rate! That is what I will be talking about today in this blog post. So without further ado, let’s dive in!
Silence Inner Voice
The first and most important tactic is to silence your inner voice. Each of us usually learns to read by following along with the words on the page and saying them in our minds. But what if I told you that your brain can comprehend the information without saying it in your head? Mind blown! By silencing this inner voice, you can move your eyes faster across the page and still get the information. It definitely takes some practice! But if you keep at it, eventually, it will become second nature to you. One of the best ways I’ve found to work at it is to take your finger and move it along the sentence you’re reading. However, the trick is to move your finger slightly faster than your inner voice can say the words. This will cause your mind to “catch up” to your finger. By going too fast for your mind’s voice, you will slowly begin to silence it. It won’t have anything to say! Practice doing this with a paragraph, and once you’re done, see what you remember about what you just read. You might be surprised at the information you got without reading it in your mind! If you found you didn’t remember as much as you wanted to, try doing it again but a little slower. Make sure it’s still faster than your inner voice, though!
Doing this tactic alone will significantly improve your reading speed. If you don’t remember anything in this blog, remember this: silence your inner voice! This will be your greatest way to read faster!
The next tactic is to track the words with your eyes differently. Here’s another piece of trivia for you: your eyes don’t actually read every word on a page! Instead, they naturally “jump” from point to point across the page. One great way to see this in action is to cover one eye and read a line of words. You’ll most likely notice that your single eye won’t naturally read every word, but rather, it will move across every two or three words. With this knowledge under your belt, you can then decrease the number of words you read by starting your eye tracking a couple of words into the line on the page and ending it a couple of words before the line ends. Let me give you an example of approximately how your eyes track the line:
This is how your eyes naturally track.
As you can see in the above line, you can start your reading at the “This” part of the line. Your brain will understand the word or two that came before it. And as I’ve mentioned before, your mind will naturally “jump” from spot to spot instead of reading every word. You don’t need to read the first couple of words, and you don’t need to read the last couple. Even though your eyes don’t see the word directly, your peripheral vision will!
Take a speed reading course
The final tactic I want to discuss is to simply take a quick online course for it! There are lots of free and paid courses you can find online. These will cover even more methods for increasing your reading speed and comprehension. Look up some videos on YouTube! There are lots on there that cover this topic!
I hope I’ve helped a bit in giving you an idea about how to speed read. Following the above tactics will significantly increase your reading rate and allow you to finish that book in no time. Happy reading!
Until next time,