After interviewing over 1,000 of the richest people in the world, Steve Siebold discovered the one trait nearly all of them had in common was that they were avid readers. For instance, Warren Buffett spends up to 80% of his day reading.
For the rest of us who know reading is a good habit, but can’t seem to find enough time to get through a book on a regular basis, the only way to accomplish our reading goals is to read faster.
Easier said than done, huh?
Actually, it really isn’t that difficult to speed up your reading rate. So if reading has become a time drain and keeps you from doing other important things, the following guidelines will help you read faster in 10 minutes or less. It may take some practice, but soon you will enjoy reading all the books, magazines or whatever without worrying about the time spent.
1. First of all, you have to find your current reading speed.
- Grab a book.
- Set a timer.
- Start reading at your normal speed for 1 minute.
- After 1 minute, stop and count how many lines you read.
- Multiply the number of lines by the average number of words per line.
- This is your base reading speed expressed in words per minute (WPM).
2. Stop subvocalizing.
Subvocalization means that when we read anything, we tend to say each word in our mind. If you read like this, you can only read at the same rate that you speak. What you have to do is practice reading by only looking at the words and allow them to filter into your brain.
3. Use a pointer.
This step alone will revolutionize your reading speed. By using something to direct your eye, you will begin to concentrate on the page instead of reading every word in your head. Try sliding the tip of your pen or your index finger under the words while reading. It will help you to read at the speed of the pointer. Then slowly try to increase the speed of moving the pointer and thereby your reading speed will also increase. Seriously, try it!
4. Practice reading by scanning.
Instead of reading word-by-word, attempt to take in several words at a time. Begin with two, then three, then five, and so on. You will need to use your peripheral vision for this. Train your eyes to focus on chunks of words on the middle of the line, and your peripheral vision will help you to understand the rest. When you read multiple words at once, your eyes can move more rapidly across the page, which will increase your reading speed.
5. Test yourself again.
After you practice the techniques above, calculate your new reading speed.
Again, set a starting point on the timer and read the same page for one minute. Implement the techniques that you have practiced, especially using a pointer. You will discover that you’re now reading much faster speed than you usually read. After one minute, stop and count the number of lines you read. Find the average number of words and determine your new speed rate.
If you practice reading like this on a daily basis, your reading speed will skyrocket. Just spend 10 minutes every day practicing the reading techniques, and soon you’ll be reading 500 pages a day like Buffett and devouring all those books sitting on your shelf.