Rapid reading: speed reading technique 14. Rapid reading from cover to cover.
Look quickly (2-10 seconds per page) at every page, searching for ‘hot spots’ of key information. Do this after a work session to collect any final bits of information.
Reading from cover to cover means going quickly through the book sequentially looking at every page for key information. This is what most people think speed reading is (whereas it is just as valid to go backwards and forwards through the book or only go to specific sections to look for relevant information.)
HOW TO rapid read
Look quickly through the book, looking consciously at every page (2-10 seconds per page). Use the speed-reading patterns (speed reading technique 15) to look for hot spots (speed reading technique11) of key information. Any time you find key information you can slow down and read around it (dip) until you have grasped the point, and then resume rapid reading.
Why read from cover to cover?
- Less experienced spd rdrs will typically rapid read after they’ve worked with a book for 20 minutes, checking for information they may have missed. Because you are familiar with the book from previewing it and having a work session, it is relatively easy to spot new information. Rapid reading can be helpful in the early days for getting over the feeling of having missed something if you don’t read from cover to cover. As you grow to trust (speed reading technique31) your ability to gather the information you need and accept the 80/20 rule (speed reading technique5), you are likely to use rapid reading less for this purpose and use your time for moving on to new books.
- Experienced spd rdrs often rapid read a book instead of doing a work session when their purpose is to understand its message or to get an overview of the information.
However, both experienced and inexperienced spd rdrs need to do something with the information (take notes speed reading technique17, talk about the information speed reading technique19) if they want to be sure of remembering it (speed reading technique16).
When you have understood the downloading process (speed reading technique28), you can be confident that as you consciously take in information using rapid reading, you will also be taking all the information into your non-conscious mind. This is why experienced spd rdrs sometimes use rapid reading in place of downloading since it is more satisfying to the conscious mind.
If you still feel you’re missing something
You’re not alone. It is very common in the early days to feel that we have to read word for word to get all the information. This often stems from the way we were taught to read as children. And at times you may experience irritation, disappointment or tension – which seems to be an inevitable part of a successful learning experience. Avoid getting cross or criticizing yourself. Instead …
- Trust the 80/20 rule. You probably don’t need to get all the information in the book, and even if you did, you wouldn’t need to get it all in one go, and reading sequentially in the same way as you would read a novel is not the way to get it.
- Do not judge the process by your first experiences. New skills may take a bit of time to become second nature. Keep going.
- Switch on your inner smile and relax. The more you practise getting into a good state, the easier it gets and the more often you feel good ‘for no obvious reason’.
- Notice what is already working. Focus on what you have achieved and build on that.
- Check what you think you’ve missed. Once you’ve followed the spd rdng approach to a book, go back and read it sequentially to see what you’ve missed. It’s likely that you will have gleaned at least 80% of the information you need (not the same as all the information it contains), but what you might have ‘missed’ is the feeling of reading conventionally. Feel free to read conventionally for pleasure, alongside using spd rdng techniques for information.
Reading in a new way
Cross your arms. Now cross them the other way (with the ‘wrong’ arm on top). Most people find this uncomfortable. (Some can’t do it.
We get used to doing something (eg reading) in one way and when we first try a new way, it feels wrong. Or we feel we haven’t got enough – there may be something else in the book that we’ve missed. Or we feel guilty because we’re not doing it the way we were taught. But it’s just a feeling.
In school, the teaching of reading stops once you can decipher letters and words. Thereafter you’re on your own. Some people develop their own reading strategies, but most of us don’t. Most of us learn them later in life. You’re learning them now. You can always go back to reading in the old way if you want to (in first gear) – or you can choose to use spd rdng techniques to read quickly and easily for the rest of your life. Once they become second nature, they’re just as comfortable as (and much more effective than) your old traditional reading.
YES BUT …
All this isn’t proper reading!!!!!
You’re absolutely right, if by ‘proper reading’ you mean conventional reading.
With conventional reading, you take three or more days to read a book.
With spd rdng you can usually get the important information from a book in less than half an hour.
With conventional reading, you usually forget 90% of what you read within 48 hours.
With spd rdng you can retain as much information as you need for as long as you need it.
With conventional reading, you read everything in the same way.
With spd rdng you have a variety of techniques and strategies which you can adapt for different types of reading materials.
With conventional reading it is easy for your attention to wander.
With spd rdng it is easy to stay focused.
With conventional reading, the author determines how you get the information – whether you need it or not.
With spd rdng you are in control of how and when you get the information – and you only spend time on information which is relevant.
Conventional reading implies that reading something is enough to make you an expert.
Spd rdng gives you the techniques to genuinely build your expertise quickly and easily.
Read all the 37 speed reading techniques in our
Spd Rdng – The Speed Reading Bible: The Speed Reading Book with 37 Techniques, Tips & Strategies For Ultra Fast Reading (Speed Reading, Study Skills, Memory … Skills, Memory and Accelerated Learning
Read more about the Speed Reading Coaches