What’s your reading speed? How many words can you devour in a minute? The world’s fastest reader, Howard Berg, in an interview gave a shocking revelation about his reading speed. According to him, he consumes 25000 to 35000 words per minute, and reads about 30,000 books a year. Now that’s huge. But page and font size determines a lot in speed. If you can read less than 200 words per minute, then you’re less than an average adult reading speed.
Are you the wishing to become a fast reader? Berg gives us insight on how to go about it:
1) Create a library for yourself:
Amidst the busy lifestyle many of us are adapted to, we can create a quiet corner to dissolve pages of books. Our ‘library’ can be anywhere we find convenient, quiet and a bit out of reach to avoid intrusion. Berg fashioned this library as a kid growing up in a violent and hostile environment, and was unperturbed by the violence by finding a safe place.
2) Get Curious about knowledge in other fields:
Not everyone may fancy reading for another course when there are enough books for the course at hand. But that was Howard’s story. He studied Biology and developed interest on how the brain works, leading him to study Psychology alongside his primary course in New York State University. Howard in the course of this discovered that school only teaches you what to learn, and not how to learn. So to learn things faster and easier, Berg adopted reading 80 pages of books per minute to learn more about the brain.
3) Maintain your tempo:
You do not have to give reasons to back down on a new speed level. Not minding other contending issues, do you best to get better at your speed and not peg yourself backwards. Howard maintained his speed and later increased it to 100 words per minute.
4) Be Concerned about what you have to get from the book:
Howard gave this advice as a way of sifting out the main message of a text from walls of words.
“I don’t really care about the reading part. I care about the information I can get and use and I think that’s what people really want today. They don’t want speed. They want understanding in less time so that they can actually use it when they need it”
Does Speed Reading affect comprehension?
An average adult that reads 200 words per minute can achieve 60% comprehension, out of which 10% is retained. How can you improve on this? Howard stressed the need for improving on your comprehension, and applying the understanding gained. Statistics reveal that about 10% of knowledge from a book is retained after 24 hours, but applying the knowledge gained makes the reading experience more significant.
So How do you read a book? Howard Berg gives the following clues
1) Pre-read the book in few minutes by glancing through all the pages to see if it has something significant to offer, or something you might find interesting. Your findings should determine if the book is a go-ahead or not.
If the book is right for you, then search for what you know, what you don’t know and what you need to learn. Do not spend time trying to learn everything when at the end of the day you cannot remember everything.
2) Find out the significance of every new knowledge learnt, and dissolve every confusion the book throws at you.
It must be understood that reading is about speed, comprehension and retention; and not just speed alone. Don’t be over emphatic about completing a number of pages in record time to feed your ego as a fast reader. Every writer has his message in his book and desires a better understanding from his reader; so if you’re consumed in sucking in the pages of a book to pounce on another in a short while, then you have lost the purpose of the book to you.
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About the author
Jimmy Umana is a content writer and a lover of creative and inspired writings. He also inspires the younger generation in making a conscious impact to the world of creative artistry with special attention to character development. He also inspires young authors through online and offline tutoring sessions.