Reading with the Right Brain - Read faster by reading ideas instead of just words


How much do I want to read more? 8/10

Original concept for speed reading.
The idea is to seperate the part of the brain that "see" the words and bring them to your brain. And the other part that actually do the understanding.
The focus here is on the understanding, with using the other part of the brain.
It's inspiring to know the author was a slow reader until the age of 49, and then went from 200 wpm to 450 wpm.

I felt abnormal just like him, thinking I could never read normally. I'm a slow reader that loves to read. Just like him.
I believe reading faster can be done without compromising comprehension and can even improve it if done right.


Introduction

This book is about learning to read conceptually and imagining and visualizing what you are reading.

Frustration

I had always wished I was a better reader. I wanted to read more but I was so slow.
What was wrong with me? Maybe I just had a slow brain. Maybe I could never read faster.

Discovery

Then one day at the age of 49, in the summer of 2000, I was sitting in my yard trying to get through a book on the interesting science of fractals. But again, it was a struggle.
something interesting happened. As my mind idled, I began to notice patterns in the arrangement of the words.

What if reading in “idea clumps” would make reading faster?
Grouping letters into words is easy because of the spaces between words, but what about ideas?
What if I tried to concentrate on these complete ideas instead of individual words? I grabbed a pencil from the house and started marking off groups of what I thought sounded like meaningful chunks of words with slashes like this:

But before / we go into / an introductory discussion / of what chaos theory / is trying to accomplish, / let us look / at some historical aspects / of the field. / If we look / at the development / of the sciences / on a time-scale / on which / the efforts / of our forebears / are visible, / we will observe / indications / of an apparent / recapitulation / in the present day, / even if / at a different level.

And wow! Suddenly when I read these phrases as complete units of meaning, the ideas seemed to jump off the page, straight into my mind!
I marked up and read several more pages. This looked like a breakthrough. I could read the text faster, plus the text was easier to understand.
This was the solution I had been looking for. There was one problem though. How could I read like this without needing to first manually mark up the text?

Development

This original online reading tool, which can still be found at speedreader.com/v1, resulted in plenty of positive feedback.
I came up with are what led to the creation of my own course now at readspeeder.com

I realized faster reading mostly required faster thinking, and the only effective way to think faster is to process more information at a time—that is, to read whole ideas or thought-units, instead of words.
Then I discovered that if I visualized what I was reading, I would automatically think in larger concepts.
the attempt to visualize was still focusing my attention on mental concepts rather than words.

contrary to how the left brain merely described things, the right brain thought in pictures; and by suppressing the descriptions on the left side, you could use the special right brain talent to actually draw what you saw instead of what you thought you saw.
This seemed similar to what I was doing when visualizing the thought-units. I was using my visual right hemisphere to imagine the real concepts of what I was reading.

the left brain handles information one step at a time, while the right brain looks at whole patterns of information simultaneously.
it became apparent where my difficulty in reading had occurred. I was concentrating heavily on the left-brain function of decoding words, and was leaving the real comprehension of ideas pretty much to chance.

This approach to improving reading skills is different from previous approaches because it doesn’t suggest pushing your speed and waiting for your comprehension to catch up. Instead, it teaches you how to strengthen your comprehension and then let your reading speed increase on its own.
To read faster you must forget about how fast you are reading and put all your attention on what you are reading.

Initial Speed Test

Time your reading:


A wife was preparing a breakfast of fried eggs for her husband when he suddenly burst into the kitchen.
“Careful!” he said. “Careful! Put in some more butter! Oh, my gosh! You’re cooking too many at once!
“Too many! Turn them! Turn them now! Now! We need more butter! Oh, my gosh! They’re going to stick!
“Slow things down a bit! Careful! Careful! I said be careful! You never listen to me when you’re cooking! Never!
“Right, turn them! Hurry up! Turn them now! Are you crazy? Have you lost your mind? Don’t forget to salt them. You know you always forget to salt them. Use the salt. USE THE SALT! USE THE SALT! USE THE SALT!”
The wife stared at him in disbelief. “What the heck is wrong with you? Do you think I don’t know how to fry a couple of eggs?
The husband replied calmly, “I just wanted to show you what it feels like when I’m driving.”


152 / 51 sec = 3
3 x 60 = 180 wpm

What Your Speed Means

400 WPM seems to be a common plateau for many people. It is like some sort of physical speed limit.
Exceeding four hundred words per minute appears to require a fundamental shift in mindset; readers can only pass this speed when they stop thinking of the words.


Chapter 1: Getting Started

Background

READING IS COMPREHENSION.
It is this discovery that allowed me to increase my reading speed from 150 words per minute, to a very enjoyable 450-500 words per minute.

The idea stemmed from the realization that comprehension wasn’t just a part of reading; on the contrary, reading was nothing but comprehension. Seeing text and recognizing words, was only the delivery process—but it wasn’t reading. The words delivered raw data to my brain, but this data wasn’t actually read until I understood it.

All those speed reading books, programs, and courses that I’d tried in the past only focused on eye movement and word recognition—that is, learning to see words faster. But seeing is not reading.

For example, I can “read” this medical text: “Aspergillus was detected histopathologically in the visceral pleural cavity.”
since I am not a doctor, all my mind processes is "blah blah blah."
You haven’t read anything until you’ve comprehended it.

Why Read Faster?

The truth is, there is no right speed. If you know how to read faster, you can read faster or slower if you wish. If you have the right tools, you are free to choose the one you prefer for each situation.

Why This Method?

allow me to share some of the comments that were emailed or left on my website about this method:

Layout of This Book

Comprehension must come first. Instead of pushing your speed while simply trying to retain your comprehension, faster reading will come as the natural result of better comprehension. Rather than focusing on speed reading, you will be focusing on speed comprehension.

Repeating Exercises

other benefits to repeating an exercise. Rather than having an unfair advantage on the second reading, you will actually be further reinforcing your skills in new ways.

Practice Exercise #1

The shift into higher reading speeds comes as a result of learning to read with the right brain, reading whole ideas rather than words.
Since each exercise is exactly one thousand words long, the calculations will be simple and the results will be easy to compare.
60,000 / SECONDS

The black and gray highlighting should automatically guide you to the larger blocks of information. At this stage, just get used to seeing text divided into meaningful thought-units.
What is most important is that the phrases make sense to you and are easy to imagine.

The Velveteen Rabbit


There was once a velveteen rabbit, and in the beginning he was really splendid. He was fat and bunchy, as a rabbit should be; his coat was spotted brown and white, he had real thread whiskers, and his ears were lined with pink sateen. On Christmas morning, when he sat wedged in the top of the Boy’s stocking, with a sprig of holly between his paws, the effect was charming.
There were other things in the stocking, nuts and oranges and a toy engine, and chocolate almonds and a clockwork mouse, but the Rabbit was quite the best of all. For at least two hours the Boy loved him, and then Aunts and Uncles came to dinner, and there was a great rustling of tissue paper and unwrapping of parcels, and in the excitement of looking at all the new presents the Velveteen Rabbit was forgotten.
For a long time he lived in the toy cupboard or on the nursery floor, and no one thought very much about him. He was naturally shy, and being only made of velveteen, some of the more expensive toys quite snubbed him. The mechanical toys were very superior, and looked down upon everyone else; they were full of modern ideas, and pretended they were real. The model boat, who had lived through two seasons and lost most of his paint, caught the tone from them and never missed an opportunity of referring to his rigging in technical terms.
The Rabbit could not claim to be a model of anything, for he didn’t know that real rabbits existed; he thought they were all stuffed with sawdust like himself, and he understood that sawdust was quite out-of-date and should never be mentioned in modern circles. Even Timothy, the jointed wooden lion, who was made by the disabled soldiers, and should have had broader views, put on airs and pretended he was connected with Government. Between them all the poor little Rabbit was made to feel himself very insignificant and commonplace, and the only person who was kind to him at all was the Skin Horse.
The Skin Horse had lived longer in the nursery than any of the others. He was so old that his brown coat was bald in patches and showed the seams underneath, and most of the hairs in his tail had been pulled out to string bead necklaces. He was wise, for he had seen a long succession of mechanical toys arrive to boast and swagger, and by-and-by break their mainsprings and pass away, and he knew that they were only toys, and would never turn into anything else. For nursery magic is very strange and wonderful, and only those playthings that are old and wise and experienced like the Skin Horse understand all about it.
“What is REAL?” asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. “Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?”
“Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.”
“Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit.
“Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.”
“Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?”
“It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”
“I suppose you are real?” said the Rabbit. And then he wished he had not said it, for he thought the Skin Horse might be sensitive. But the Skin Horse only smiled.
“The Boy’s Uncle made me Real,” he said. “That was a great many years ago; but once you are Real you can’t become unreal again. It lasts for always.”
The Rabbit sighed. He thought it would be a long time before this magic called Real happened to him. He longed to become Real, to know what it felt like; and yet the idea of growing shabby and losing his eyes and whiskers was rather sad. He wished that he could become it without these uncomfortable things happening to him.
There was a person called Nana who ruled the nursery. Sometimes she took no notice of the playthings lying about, and sometimes, for no reason whatever, she went swooping about like a great wind and hustled them away in cupboards. She called this “tidying up,” and the playthings all hated it, especially the tin ones. The Rabbit didn’t mind it so much, for wherever he was thrown he came down soft.
One evening, when the Boy was going to bed, he couldn’t find the china dog that always slept with him. Nana was in a hurry, and it was too much trouble to hunt for china dogs at bedtime, so she simply looked about her, and seeing that the toy cupboard door stood open, she made a swoop.
“Here,” she said, “take your old Bunny! He’ll do to sleep with you!” And she dragged the Rabbit out by one ear, and put him into the Boy’s arms.
That night, and for many nights after, the Velveteen Rabbit slept in the Boy’s bed. At first he found it rather uncomfortable, for the Boy hugged him very tight, and sometimes he rolled over on him, and sometimes he pushed him so far under the pillow that the Rabbit could scarcely breathe. And he missed, too, those long moonlight hours in the nursery, when all the house was silent…


5 min.
60 000 / 300 = 200