8 Effective Ways of Improving Your Reading Skills

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The importance of reading skills

Regular reading influences a variety of personal skills that permeate all aspects of our lives. Reading across a wide variety of topics enables us to interpret and better understand the world around us. It can also develop our ability to communicate effectively, helping us assimilate and absorb different types of communication in our workplaces, such as emails, messages, reports, and presentations. It encompasses several vital aspects that work together to develop comprehension, fluency, vocabulary, and sharpen our ability to engage with the people around us.

8 Effective Ways of Improving Your Reading Skills

Ways to improve reading skills

There are a variety of ways one can improve reading skills. Here are eight ways you can further your reading skills.

1. Practice is essential

Regular reading is a prerequisite. Like building any skill, constant practice is vital. Consciously set aside 30 minutes to an hour each day for reading. Be it news articles, fiction, business features, or anything related to your areas of interest, take the time to practice your reading skills.

2. Set reading goals

You can set reading goals to develop your vocabulary and improve your ability to connect things you read and your thoughts and ideas. For example, you can set a goal to learn terms and phrases related to a particular topic like management, technology, or any subject that interests you, such as photography or wildlife. Find meanings to unfamiliar words and build your vocabulary to a higher level.

3. Do an overview

There is no stated rule that you must read everything from the first word to the last. It would help if you practiced the art of previewing and scanning texts, titles, captions, and headlines to get an idea of what you are reading. This can help you grasp the basic concepts and the text’s theme before you begin reading it.

4. Read Silently

Another essential aspect of learning to read fast and effectively is to read silently. The best readers are the ones who read silently, wholly immersed in the text. It helps you develop the concentration and the focus required to comprehend and absorb what you are reading. Find a quiet place without any distractions to do this.

5. Have a purpose

Knowing your purpose for reading a text can help you get engaged with what you are reading and what you hope to gain from it. Additionally, you will be able to connect with the author’s points of view and perspectives.

6. Apply reading techniques

As you read different types of texts, you can apply select strategies to increase your comprehension. Learn to identify the text structure- such as, is it informational, leisure, persuasive, or provocative. Using techniques like slow and methodical reading, or highlighting passages as you go along, or even taking notes helps you improve your ability to digest what you are reading.

7. Internalize the content

You can increase your understanding by connecting what you are reading with your life or work situations. Making personal connections through parallel thoughts can help you comprehend the text through association. It vastly enriches your reading experience.

8. Summarize your reading

Try to verbally summarize what you read by sharing with a friend or write a summary to help you retain and comprehend what you read. This will help in exercising your absorption and retention capabilities.

In Conclusion

Like most activities that become a habit, a regular reading practice will turn it into a routine. Since reading skills involve concentration, an easily distracted person will find reading a great way to practice focus and attentiveness. Quiet, immersive reading for long periods can have an almost meditative effect.  It helps quieten the mind, freeing it from distractions, and in the process, you, almost always, gain something invaluable.

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