In this digital age, the importance of being able to absorb information quickly and efficiently is more pronounced than ever. For me, I get tonnes of information every single day. It used to be just the simple newspapers.
Now I get an inbox full of mail, newsletters and every kind of news and information. Websites are publishing new articles and content every day. And it does not help that my newspaper has grown so much that it now comes in 3 sections, or 4 depending on the day.
With such a flood of information coming to you every day, you need to be able to sift through the lot, and absorb only whatever is necessary. And you have to absorb it fast as well.
As such, speed reading is a skill that you should definitely pick up. You need to learn to read at lightning quick speeds. What you learnt in school? Throw it out. As students, we were taught to go through text slowly to understand the words and sentence structure. Yes, that is great if you are learning the language, but most of us are already proficient in English, so why are we still reading like students?
The focus now should be on absorbing knowledge, not improving language. So instead of going through text word-by-word, sometimes just making a fast sweep through the text, and grasping its overall content is all that is required.
As you read, urge yourself to go faster and faster. This takes time and practice, so be patient.
Good readers can "see" and understand a chunk of text at once. Once you get to this stage, you will be saving yourself a huge amount of time. Time that you can now spend doing other more productive tasks!
And when you come across something really useful or interesting that you want to memorise, simply pause, and re-read the portion of text several times. The human mind stores information that you re-read better than something that you just take a cursory glance at. To make an even greater imprint, repeat the main points to yourself out loud, or write the summary of the important details down on a piece of paper.
Just by increasing the rate at which you sieve through the important information and the junk, and learning how to absorb and retain the key points, will suddenly free up a large chunk of your time!
Alvin Poh has been specialising in web development, content distribution, advertising and marketing strategies since 1995. His goal is to provide practical information based upon his years of experience to help webmasters, website designers, and self-employed people achieve their goals in today's competitive Internet. At his site, you can learn how to make money online.