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How to Speed Read- Learn Most Useful Skill

How to Speed Read- Learn Most Useful Skill

This week I wanted to learn how to read really fast. The plan was simply to find the best techniques to drastically increase my current speed of 230 words per minute which is the total average better way. But still pretty bad considering that some people can read more than 1000 words per minute. This was my chance to finally read all the books that abandon me and try to become a productive person.

But seriously when you realize how much we read every single day imagine how many things you can learn or how much time you could save by reading that fast?

So I started researching videos, articles, and everything else that could help me get there in 7 days. To keep track of the progress I took speed reading tests on two different websites and I will take them again a week from now to see if there's gonna be any difference?

After about 6 hours of research, I made at least of 4 techniques I needed to learn to master speed reading and one technique to actually comprehend and remember what I read. So I started from the basics of reducing subvocalization.


5 Tips to Speed Read


1. Reducing subvocalization

This first step gives you access to all the other 5 techniques. During my whole life I've subconsciously repeated all the words I was reading in my head and this means that reading out loud will be basically the same as reading in my head pronouncing every single word. But Here's the thing, you must speak at about 150 words per minute which is much slower than what you can achieve while reading.

Shut down the inner voice going along in your head

So the trick here is trying to shut down the inner voice going along in your head and only rely on your vision. I try to practice for a while and Luckily I could already do it from the beginning but sometimes I found myself unconsciously going back to repeating in the world and that's because subvocalization increases comprehension.

But for this step, it's important not to focus too much on that. Anyways, I kept trying and when I felt confident enough I decided to move to the next fundamental step grouping the words instead of reading every single one of them.


2. Grouping words

These techniques were already blowing my mind. I've been training my whole life to read each word individually but the reality is that you can get way faster if you start grouping the words and read them as one. To do that you could draw one or lines on the page. I mean you could simply imagine the lines without actually drawing them grouping the words in two or sections. I started a book and I decided to practice with 3 sections because it's obviously easier but still, it took me a while to get used to it.

I could almost Similarly understand the meaning of the sentences but at first, I kept unconsciously jumping back to reading every single word I tried on books and then on the screen and it took a while but slowly the technique started to feel more natural. After 2 hours I took a speed reading test and by combining the first and the second technique I could see the first good result 419 words per minute. I was expecting it. That's great.

At this point, I kept repeating a few tests online but my speed remained basically the same and that's why I decided to move to the third step using a tracker.


3. Use a tracker

This step is really powerful but it simply consists of taking your finger or a pen and use it to track the words you are reading. Imagine if you had to count every word on the page. It would be much easier to do it if you help yourself with a tracker and the same goes for reading. While you read your eyes tend to jump back and forward or focus too much on the same point and all these jumps work against the reading speed.

But by using a pen or your finger you effectively give the eyes a precise point to follow making the movements much smoother. I started holding the pen under my hand keeping it flat on the page and I tried to focus early on its speed by underlining each line I was reading. I realized that the tracker was also helping me dictate the pace and keep the speed consistent.

I spent a few minutes trying this technique but this time my comprehension was insanely low. At first, I didn't know why. I thought the pen was the problem so I tried with my finger and nothing changed. But then I tried to change the book and immediately felt a huge difference. Maybe it was because of the font or the topic. I have no idea. But anyways I kept practicing for a while with a new book and then I decided to test my reading speed on paper.

This time I'd been able to read a page in 55 seconds which is about 440 words per minute. But honestly, this was a fake result because my comprehension was insanely bad and then it happened exactly when happened. During my typing in my first video, I remembered that I'm Italian with an Italian book. The test gave 26 seconds for 203 wards which means 468 words per minute without distant comprehension.

This result was insanely better compared to what I've got in the beginning. But if I wanted to improve speed and comprehension I still need to learn 2 other steps one of them being reading in the middle.


4. Reading in the middle

What I mean by that is that if you focus on your finger you can see everything that is around you. That thanks to your peripheral vision and you can actually take advantage of this feature. You have 3x faster. Using your peripheral vision could increase the reading speed by 300% because it allows you to understand the full sentence while pointing your eyes only in the middle of it.

How to Speed Read- Learn Most Useful Skill

Reading less words and therefore saving a lot of time by following the tips in this article, I drew 2 lines on the page basically skipping the first and the last word of each sentence. If you start reading from the second word and stop to the second last one you'll be still able to see the first and the last words even if you're not actively reading them. I read about 30 pages like this always imagining two lines almost the edges of each sentence.

And when I got more confident I started excluding the first and the last two words instead of one but I'm not gonna lie. It's hard.

At times I felt I wasn't understanding a single word and I often had to go back and read the text again. But as I read the line I tried to focus only on the speed at this stage and at the end of the 5th day, I felt I was reading pretty fast. I feel like I have acquired some sort of superpower in everything I read right now. I read it extremely fast. It's great. The last step before trying the final test and see how much progress I actually made is all about increasing comprehension.


5. Comprehension

The technique consisting of reading slightly faster than your comprehension allows for a few minutes. This way you will slowly get used to a new level of speed and after slowing down your comprehension will be increased. I practiced this technique for 20 minutes going really fast and then slowing down. And after a while, I finally decided to try the reading test. One last time I started the experiment at a speed of 230 words per minute and at this point I was extremely curious to see how fast they could read after 6 days by combining all 5 techniques.

And to find that out I took 3 types of tests.

1. The first one a line in English
2. The second one with an English book
3. And the third one with an Italian book

1. And the first test went pretty well. 436 I take it. but I found it pretty difficult to apply the speed reading techniques while reading on a screen.

2. For the second test reading an English book.
I tried to maintain a great level of comprehension and I've got a slightly different result 430 which wasn't bad but not great.

3. But Luckily things went differently with the third test with an Italian book and this gave me by far the best result 541, That's insane.

I basically doubled my reading speed in 6 days and you can easily do it too. And this is huge for me because I've never read a lot of books even if I know that they're great. But after this things will definitely change.

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