Do you also have a wish list of books to read, but you never find the time?
Waiting for the holidays to catch up on your reading?
It’s a pity we often don’t find the time to read books, as they expand our mind and bring us new ideas. The most successful people actually do a lot of reading — Bill Gates reads about 50 books per year, and Elon Musk read the full Britannica Encyclopaedia by the age of 9. Check out this article about the incredible benefits of reading every day.
So it’s important to invest in your personal development and read more. Now, we can hear you think: how to fit this in my busy schedule, between work and the gym and my social life?
Here’s some great practical advice from the man who read one book every day for a whole year — find out how to read quicker and better from Jay Shetty!
Do you make these common mistakes when reading?
Jay starts by setting things straight — avoid these two misconceptions about reading.
One of the biggest mistakes is that we think that books need to be read cover by cover, whatever their size is. But that’s not the case, Jay clarifies.
“It’s like doing groceries and going to every aisle for just the few things you need. You never do that. You make a list, go to the specific aisles and you grab what you need. Books are no different. You can find what you need, especially in non-fiction books, much quicker and more efficiently than reading every single page.”
The second big mistake is that we often reading from our willpower instead of ‘love power’, Jay continues. Do you also drag yourself through some books, with every page feeling like a struggle? It means you’re relying on your willpower while you should be reading with love. Focus your energy on books you’re truly excited about.
So now we know what not to do when reading. Let’s get cracking on what we need to do to speed up and improve our reading!
Trick #1: Check out the TED talk or YouTube video about the book
Jay reveals it’s the first thing he does before reading a book. “I try to grasp the concept of the book as quickly as possible, to understand the underlying principles.”
It will allow you to judge whether you still want to read the book, or maybe you learned enough without needing to read it entirely. Or on the contrary, the video can spark your interest and motivate you to read further.
Trick #2: Highlight the sections of your interest
If you decide you want to read more of the book, here’s a great way to get started.
Highlight the sections that interest you most in the table of content, Jay recommends. “It’s like picking the things you really want to taste from a menu. It makes you conscious about what you read and what you want to learn.”
One part that’s particularly worth reading is chapter 1, Jay adds. It usually contains a useful introduction on how to read the book — but after that, only pick the chapters you really want to dig into.
Trick #3: Speed up your reading
So you selected your book, watched its video, and marked your chapters. Jay has a couple of tricks up his sleeve to speed up the reading process.
If you’re listening to an audio book, you can increase the speed of the speaker. If you’re reading a book the classical way, you can simply use your finger to guide you — moving it quicker down the page will enable you to read faster, Jay says.
Another way is to focus on the most important words and sentences in a paragraph. You don’t need to read every paragraph in full, as our brain will make the necessary connections between key words. In a chapter, you can focus on headings and subheadings and quickly catch the main messages.
A final trick to speed up your reading is to read every first and final three sentences of each paragraph that you’re interested in, to quickly see if that part of the book is worth your time. It allows you to grasp 90% of the meaning by reading only 30% of the text, Jay explains.
“We have this fixation on reading every word, finishing every book, finishing every page. The reality is that most of us never let that happen.”
By letting go of that fixation you will actually be able to fit in regular reading into your busy schedule. These tricks will allow you to quickly learn from some books, or select the books that you’re truly excited to read from cover to cover.
Final trick: write down your “3 S” of every chapter
Jay gives away his final trick: “I make sure that after every chapter I write down the “3S” formula: the story that really inspired me, a statistic that blew my mind, and thirdly, I make a note of something I want to share with someone else. It’s a great way to get more out of a book.”Try out these tricks and see which ones work for you. And keep in mind, it’s not about the number of books you read, but what you learned from them!
Check out more motivational guidance from Jay Shetty here.
And we can’t wait to hear your views and experiences in the comments below!