Whether you get your reading in while waiting in line at the grocery store, when you’re not busy at work or at night just before you hit the hay, devouring the next chapter in our current book always leaves us with a feeling of accomplishment. Just as long as it’s not while you’re driving, it doesn’t matter where you get your reading in, so long as you’re making progress on your book, right? The next time you pull your book out in passing and read only a few paragraphs, ask yourself how well you remember those passages later on.
Far more important than simply making progress on your book is reading retention – how well you recall what you just read. While reading retention sharply decreases when we’re distracted or multitasking, nestling in for a good session of speed reading (which you can learn all about here) is the best way to not only make progress on books, but actually remember what you read later on. That means that you can blow through those shorter kindle books in a single sitting.
Here are the best ways to increase your reading speed, reading retention and enjoy your books more.
One of the biggest mistakes people make when speed reading is failing to eliminate all distractions. This means repeatedly putting your book on pause to go grab something or do something. In order to optimize your reading experience, make sure that you do these simple things before you crack open your book (or Kindle):
1. Turn your phone off. Then plug it into a charger. Preferably in another room. Some people find this incredibly difficult to do, but if you’re focused on reading and not checking Facebook then there is no reason to have your phone with you, right? Also, reading books on your phone makes it incredibly easy to become distracted.
2. Keep cold water nearby. By far, the number one reason people put their books down is to run and grab something to drink. The foresight to have something cold to sip on nearby makes for distraction-free reading and improved reading retention. While coffee and tea are great, they are not optimal for evening reading sessions unless you enjoy tossing and turning all night. Alternatively, a swig of ice cold water has the same stimulating effect as caffeine and won’t make you lose sleep. Reusable stainless steel water bottles that stay cold over long periods of time without leaking condensation all over your nightstand, like The Coldest Water, is a game changer. That’s why The Coldest Water bottles are perfect for avid readers.
3. Stand up while reading. Or pace around the room if need be. Strangely enough, this is a tried and tested method of your increasing reading speed. That’s because standing or pacing increases blood circulation and gives you a boost in mental energy. Conversely lying in bed under the covers is the worst way to read a book, but definitely the most comfortable.
So the next time you really want to power through a book, tuck your smartphone into bed instead, grab your Coldest Water Bottle in one hand, your book or Kindle in the other and start doing laps around your house.