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Who Else Wants To Know About Enhancing Speed Reading Utilizing Mind Maps?

By Dr. V J Mariaraj

Speed Reading is a method for improving our reading ability so we can assimilate and understand information faster. In the current era of information overload, speed reading will be a great boon to smoothly tide over the flood of available information.

Just think about the way in which you are reading this article. Most people read the way young children read - moving letter-by-letter or word-by-word. The time period of the eye resting on a word before moving to the next is called "fixation". Most adults read one block of words to another in a continuous flow. Occasionally, they might move back to a preceding block of words if they are unclear about something. These disruptions to the flow of reading are knows as "skip-backs".

By far the most common problem is sub-vocalization. As your eyes move over the reading material, you will find that you are reading the words silently inwards. You can experience it as slight movement in the tongue or throat region. Such sub-vocalization causes a mismatch between the reading speed and thinking speed.

One way to overcome this problem is to count silently from one to ten or repeat the sound "aye "aye aye". As it will be impossible to vocalize both, it is a sure way to break the habit of sub-vocalization. You will soon find that you are no longer processing the words in the tongue or throat but in the top of your head, an area called "thought stream". As your reading speed keeps pace with your thinking speed, your reading speed and comprehension greatly improves.

Another method is speeding your eye movements. As your eyes move faster than you can sub-vocalize. Your sub-vocalization will gradually decrease and stop. Using a glass screen draw 2 vertical lines in felt-tip, 5cms wide, with the text wrapped within it. Now move your eyes in a "Z pattern down this central strip, at a slightly faster speed.

Since your mind is not reading word by word, it is compelled to "fill in the gaps". This impels the mind to build associations and patterns in the written text. This leads to greater comprehension and increased memory of the reading material. The mind can effectively substitute words without any loss of meaning.

Also, when you move your eyes down a central strip of text, you widen your peripheral vision. This in turn, brings the right hemisphere of the brain into the reading process. This way you will make much more use of the right brain's ability to synthesize and build associations and links within the material.

So speed reading is not just about how fast you can read. It engages much more of the brain and thereby enhances your comprehension and creativity. Speed reading is a master tool especially for those you profess a learning style that is non-linear, open to visual stimulation, and ambitious.

Mind Map is one such excellent tool, which can aid you in the process of speed reading The essence of Mind Map is that it uses non-linear way of writing, wherein a great deal of association, color, pictures and other visual aids are used As a non-linear method, it employs key words or phrases to convey the quintessence of a thought or sentence. By exposing to Mind Map technique you will learn the fine art of using concise words and phrases to convey your thoughts, know the power of association to grasp the overall significance and deepen understanding and be receptive to the visual stimuli to enhance your memory.

Working with Mind Maps, you will know how to keep pace with your flowing thoughts, without hindering its speed and flow. Mind Mapping therefore, is a complementary tool to speed reading. By invoking robust mind enhancing techniques, Mind Map prepares you on the road to high-speed reading.

When you are able to keep pace with your flow of thought through effective key words, you will soon know how to give full expression to your racing thoughts. Mind Maps therefore, can serve as an invaluable tool for not just speeding your thought process, but also for noting them down effectively in tandem.

About The Author
Dr. Vj Mariaraj is a Mind Map enthusiast and has been using Mind Maps for the past twelve years. He has created over 5650 Mind Maps. To learn more about mind mapping send an email to

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