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The term “bookworm” used to be an insult. It was a school yard joke used in the same context as Geek, Nerd or brainiac. But reading has seen an overhaul. Is now cool Reading, something that we should incorporate into our everyday lives simply because it is good for us.
Many business owners and opinion leaders can’t stop talking about what, when, and how much they read, and the message is clear: more is better. Some even suggest that we should read a book every day to be successful.
But who has so much free time? There are hundreds of blog posts, videos, and articles with titles like “How to Read 300 Percent Faster in 15 Minutes” for quick reading. It seems we have to measure our words per minute and devour the entire list of best-sellers in the world. New York Times.
The read It’s one of my greatest joys. I read to explore new ideas and perspectives. For the past 13 years, learning from others has also helped me start my JotForm business at a company that serves 4.3 million users. But I’m not interested in collecting books to be read as hunting trophies.
The secrets of fast reading
In the 1960s, US President John F. Kennedy claimed he could read 1,200 words per minute. While speed reading has been in the spotlight for a moment in recent years, the pursuit of that skill has been around for decades.
After the 1990 edition of The Guinness Book of RecordsHoward Berg said he could read more than 80 pages of text per minute. That’s roughly 25,000 words every 60 seconds. However, reading specialist Mark Pennington says Berg’s skills were invented.
Researchers systematically debunk the claims of Berg and the world champion in speed reading, Anne Jones, who allegedly made the thriller from 624 Dan Brown sites, infernoin 41 minutes and 48 seconds.
Keith Rayner, an eye-tracking researcher, explained, for example, that tactics like reading large sections of pages at once are not biologically or psychologically possible. Our “foveal viewing area,” a small indentation in the macula, is the only part of the eye that can send clear, focused images to the brain. Everything outside of this area enters our peripheral view.
We just can’t read a whole page at a time. The human eye cannot zigzag the text and still pick up the meaning correctly. Applications that claim to increase reading speed by displaying one word at a time can also be misleading. They may promise to reduce the time your eyes spend moving from word to word, but we don’t stop thinking when our eyes move.
We process content all the time, but our eyes only move 10 percent of the time. When the brain scans a page instead of reading it, we spend less time and attention on critical analysis, interference, and empathy, wrote UCLA psychologist Patricia Greenfield.
This means that scanners can’t really pick up what they’re reading, and we deny ourselves the ability to understand complex ideas or develop informed opinions. The truth is simple: The faster the reading speed, the less understanding. And that’s fine when you’re scanning a shopping list or looking for your seat in the theater.
Sometimes we don’t have to consider every word. But when we try to gain wisdom and challenge our thinking, speed erases any purpose.
“I took a speed-reading course where you ran your finger down the middle of the page and I could read ‘War and Peace’ in just 20 minutes. It’s about Russia,” Woody Allen once said.
Reading well is a reward
Science, business and even former American presidents have contributed to speed reading fame. But there is a deeper question that we haven’t addressed: why do we want to read faster? Of course, if someone reads a book for a week or even a day, that’s great if it’s a pace that they enjoy.
We all have different reading speeds and levels of understanding in the area of human abilities. You don’t have to come up with an arbitrary number, e.g. B. finish 100 books per year. In addition, not all books are created equal. For every insightful and incredible title out there, most of the shelves also contain a ton of bad works. Some books are just not worth reading.
The taste also varies. The book, which hits a nerve in some, will bore others to tears. And we all read for different reasons: from the momentary escape to the acquisition of knowledge and the joy of the beauty of master writing.
Speaking of beauty: Many titles deserve more than just a quick read. These books are to be enjoyed like a glass of good wine. Run through the words of Gabriel García MarquezFor example, it’s like assigning a return on investment to one of life’s greatest joys.
When we read to cross a finish line, we absorb very little and miss an increasingly rare opportunity for quiet reflection. Yes, some of the most successful people in the world read a lot, but it’s also because they’re curious and like to learn. So we shouldn’t pay attention to how much they read, but how they read.
The different ways we read
We all participate in three types of reading. If you’re scrolling through Instagram or flipping through a magazine at the supermarket checkout, this is one passive reading.
The second type is practically. This includes reading a psychology textbook or the fine print on a drug label. Practical reading has a purpose, and we make special efforts to get information.
The final type of reading is enjoyable and it’s totally subjective. Whether we read Fashion In the bathtub or in a Winston Churchill biography, we read to interact with the words and subject, not because we are trying to achieve a goal. When we read for pleasure, time and place vanish. We are entering another world.
If reading is fun, the content stays with us. We don’t forget the stories. We expand our vocabulary, process new ideas and are much more likely to react to what we absorb.
All three types of reading are valid and useful. However, when we are trying to improve our lives and careers, the 100 books we complete are just as useful as the lessons we apply. Even the sharpest and brightest books don’t change anything if we haven’t processed them properly.
As the American philosopher Mortimer J. Adler wrote: “Good books are not about seeing how many of them you can read, but how many can communicate with you.”
Here are some tips to help you find books that can help or inspire you:
1. Check out the classics
Most of the books on today’s bestseller lists are repackaged versions of classic titles. Return to the original sources and explore the lengthy wisdom. Choose the best in each area that interests you.
The goal Eliyahu M. Goldratt’s was first published in 1984, but this “business novel” introduced the theory of compulsions and is still absolutely relevant in today’s technology-based world.
2. Letting go of prejudices
“What’s your owed pleasure?” It’s a fun interview and a party question. But I think we should abandon the idea that some books are just guilty amusements, titles that should only be read on the beach, for example. Reading doesn’t have to be boring to be valuable.
How to fail at almost anything and still be successful is from Scott Adams, the creator of the comic strip Dilbert. It’s fun read that made me laugh on almost every page. It’s also full of great career advice on how to use systems rather than goals to create lasting change.
3. Choose for yourself
Reading to impress others is rarely satisfying. Life is too short to endure the books that put you to sleep. Read what you love and enjoy every moment. Dealing with a topic that fascinates and preoccupies you can add more value to your life than reluctance to go through someone else’s “must-read” list.
A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of the Stoic by William B. Irvine is a philosophy book on stoicism and how it can help us avoid chronic dissatisfaction. It may not be for everyone, but I found it very interesting.
4. Go back to the books you love
My favorite books feel like a comfortable pair of shoes. They are warm and familiar but always provide comfort. I keep coming back to beloved titles and discovering something new every time I open the lid. Rereading a book that inspired, motivated, or changed you is ultimately more powerful than a new title that doesn’t move you.
I have a copy of The war of art by Steven Pressfield on my iPad and the audiobook version on my Kindle. When I have problems with work, I randomly pick a chapter and listen. In less than five minutes, I’ll be ready for success.
5. Take notes
We retain additional information when we take manual notes. You can mark up sections or jot down notes in the books you own, or keep a notebook nearby for any comments. By actively participating in the books, you can better absorb and interpret the content.
The principles of the product development flow by Donald G. Reinertsen was my introduction to the manufacturing model read. After writing down a pile of things, I was inspired to review the development process in JotForm. We continue to trust the Reinertsen principles and have never looked back.
6. Start or join a book club
Reading is a solo hobby, but a book club can make you feel collaborative. It is interesting to hear what others think about a title and the discussion can highlight different perspectives. You are also likely reading books that you may not have chosen for yourself. You don’t have to love them, but it’s a great way to play literary.
I haven’t read The year without pants Scott Berkun with a book club, but it would be an excellent choice for a non-fiction group. On the surface, it’s a story about remote working, but Berkun’s experience has shown me how to scale a team without making it bigger – a valuable principle whether your teams are working in the office or on a beach in Bali.
Clear the finish line
Nobody should judge their worth by the number of books or the titles on the shelves. Reading, of course, has a number of benefits. Educates, increases our empathy and expands our awareness. It’s just fun too.
So let’s stop reading to grow our business and bank accounts, and instead focus on the simple joy of flipping through a really cool book page after page. Don’t quit until your business income is stable