Within the self-development space there’s a cohort focusing on how to speed read. That is, how to read faster to acquire more information. While it sounds like a super power, at the root it really is just another symptom of the quick-fix epidemic we have in the U.S.
The thinking that follows this kind of philosophy is: here’s my current state, here’s the goal. Now, I could work for it but let me just find the fastest route to reach the goal.
This sounds like a smart pathway, and for purposes of reaching the goal it could be considered efficient. But the trade off is The Work that an individual experiences on the journey to the goal. For speed reading, marketing tricks and “brain hacks” or drugs might help you reach that state, but you end up being reliant on the methods that helped you because you did not transform from within. Your brain did not reconstruct. The neurons didn’t solidify new connections to enable more powerful processing. No education of Self took place that renders you a changed individual with the capacity to automatically speed read.
When you transform, you go from focusing on speed reading to understanding and becoming.
At the level of understanding, the information you consume extends into your subconscious, which begins integrating with all of the knowledge housed in your spirit; it’s creating new recipes that eventually reach the surface, your awareness, where you begin to make sense of what you read and can apply in the world. The depth of awareness from that knowledge, if processed, sparks a change within you. You transform from the reading rather than trying to get through paragraphs as fast as possible.
The more understanding you have, the faster you’ll naturally read because the content will also integrate within you faster.
If you read a 2-page article, which is most important: finishing it in 5 minutes or taking 10 minutes to digest what you read?
When you read more 2-page articles, you’ll begin synthesizing the knowledge based on everything else you’ve been exposed to, which will enable you to read faster without trying.