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Monday, July 26, 2010

Rapid Reading

My apartment building has a lounge with a library full of books. Every now and then I try to give up some of my old books and take a few new ones. A few weeks ago I found a very intriguing book titled "Break-Through Rapid Reading" by Peter Kump. Did you know that less than 1% of Americans can read faster than 400 words per minute? I bet you don't even know your reading rate!*

This book is surprisingly very helpful. I am actually skipping over some sections in order to get to the key takeaways (I know it seems counter intuitive that I am speed reading a rapid reading book) and I have found one key nugget of information:

In chapter 3, the book states that your hand is your built-in reading accelerator. Most people read at about 240 words per min because eyes need about 1/4 of a second to fixate on an object. However using your finger helps eliminate unconscious regressions 10-20%.

This book has some powerful information. I've already started practicing a few of the techniques and have noticed a difference. In the corporate world it is such a wonderful advantage if you are a fast reader. So start using your finger, it may look weird in public but it really helps!

*It can be calculated by finding: (a) words per line read, (b) total lines read, (c) multiply a x b, then divide this number by the minutes you were reading...hence wpm.

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