10 Tips On How To Read Faster And Retain More

Ever wonder how some people are able to read super duper fast and still manage to hold onto all that they’re read? Fortunately, there’s no magic involved and no one is born with the ability to speed read. It’s a skill that can be learned and in this article Beauty and Tips takes a look at how you can learn it too.

Anyone who wants to get smarter should read more books. Within books are some of the world’s greatest ideas. There are books that help us to be more productive, books that improve our practical skills, books that teach us emotional intelligence, books that arm us with new ways of making money and so on.

In a nutshell, if there’s a skill you want to pick up and master, all you need to do is turn to a book.

In this way, books can change lives. They open our eyes and make us see things from fresh perspectives. For many people, however, there’s one small snag: Time. We just don’t have the time to read all the books we want to read. Worse still, we read far too slowly. We want to read faster but retaining all that we’ve just read seems impossible.

Is it possible to read faster and retain MORE? It sure is! Let’s take a look at 10 ways to do it.


To get a better understanding of what you’ve read, it’s a good idea to perform a quick preview of the whole chapter so that you’ve got the general gist of what it’s all about.

Essentially, what you’re looking to do is read the first paragraph, a bit of the second paragraph, and then the final two paragraphs of a chapter. This should then give you a general overview of what the chapter is all about, which will then boost your understanding as you fly through the chapter for real.

Especially with non-fiction books, the gist of what a chapter is all about is summarised in the final two paragraphs. Read this summary first and then blast your way through the rest of the chapter.

Set Time Aside

It’s impossible to comprehend what we’re reading if we’re in a rush and need to beat the clock. How can you read fast and retains what you’re reading if your partner is literally stood over you, waiting for you to take them out?

Set time aside. Plan ahead for when you’re going to read.

Read Without Distractions

It sounds simple enough but how many times do you truly read without distractions? For many of us, there always seems to be something going on in the background, whether it’s our phone bleeping or something on our mind.

Clear your schedule, clear your mind and clear your desk. When you want to read, read without any distractions so that you can focus on reading fast and retaining what you read.

Read Fast Three Times

Albert Einstein was a genius so it’s well worth listening to him when he said that to truly make something stick, we have to read it over three times.

Think about it: How often do you remember the gist of a complex sentence you’ve read just once? Read it a second time and you might grasp and remember it, but it’s only after the third reading that it starts to stick.

So read each chapter super duper fast and then re-read and re-read again.

This will take a bit of time, but the faster you do it, the better you will get. Try it and don’t worry if you pick nothing up the first time around. Knowledge and understanding will emerge on the second and third times.

Don’t Sweat It

When you come across difficult passages that you can’t comprehend, it might be normal for you to spend some time trying to get your head around them so that you understand. Perhaps you make a cup of coffee before returning to the passage to tackle it again.

From now on, don’t sweat it. If a passage is tricky, keep ploughing forward. Don’t try to work it out now but return to it later when you re-read (quickly) the chapter again.

Remember that, in isolation, some passages can be difficult to comprehend. But when understood in the context of the whole chapter, they can make a lot more sense. Don’t get stuck on a difficult bit but keep reading to the end of the chapter and perhaps, by then, that difficult passage will actually make more sense.

Time It

Are you reading faster than you did last week? Well, you’re hardly going to know unless you time yourself and track your progress!

From now on, time yourself in 30 minute blocks. See how many total pages you read in 30 minutes and then compare it with the previous week. In this way, you’ll see how far you’ve come – or how far you need to go.

At the same time, track how much you’re comprehending. True, you’re reading faster, but are you retaining what you’re reading?

Don’t Read Each Word

The most successful speed readers don’t read every single word. Instead, they distil the essence of a paragraph or a sentence by reading as much as is necessary.

All you need is the gist of things to comprehend what’s going on. Boost efficiency by skimming words and even sentences.

Be Awake And Alert

It’s impossible to read fast and retain more if you feel fatigued and drowsy. If your brain isn’t engaged, it’s game over.

Drink coffee and improve your diet to boost your concentration. And if necessary …

Take Nootropics

Nootropics improve our mental performance, boosting our focus and retention of knowledge. They include caffeine and adderall and they’re popular with students who need to revise.


Lastly, the old saying that practice makes perfect is true. The more you practice speed reading, the better you will get at it.

So read fast and read often. Read whenever you get the chance.

Eventually, you will realise that your ability to read fast and comprehend what you’ve read has improved.

Honestly, there are no massive tricks involved. People who can read fast and retain what they’ve read have become good at the skill simply by just doing it. And that’s what you need to do, slow coach!

Do you have other tips on how to read faster and retain more?

Stay happy!

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