Advertising
Advertising

4 Effective Strategies To Remember Everything You Read

4 Effective Strategies To Remember Everything You Read

Have you ever encountered the following scenario:

You: I just read a great book!

Friend: What’s it about?

Advertising

You: (paused and tried so hard to recall what you’ve read)

Or have you forced yourself to finish a book in a day or so, because you worried you would forget the previous chapters after a reading hiatus?

When it comes to widening our knowledge base, unfortunately, we usually prioritize quantity over quality. Yes, the more you read, the more information you get, but we tend to forget the things we read after a short period of time. Our inability to retain information from what we have previously read is dauntingly common. We sometimes skim through the passages; or read word by word, letter by letter, without understanding the content; or even scan the book and get to the next — to bombard ourselves with piles of knowledge. But how often does loading and stacking help us retain what we read?

Advertising

If we can’t remember anything from the books we read, what’s the point of reading? To make your reading effective and meaningful, here are 4 strategies to help you retain what you read:

1. Generate questions and look for answers

One reading habit we have is to completely immerse ourselves in the text and drill into the details when we read. We think the best way to get the most out of a book is to complete all of the chapters, but we don’t always remember the walls of text upon closing the book. One method to retain our memory is to first go through the table of content (the table of content is here for a reason!) and generate a list of questions, then actively search for answers in the book. When we have a purpose to read a book, it is easier to find and remember what we read.

2. Scribble in the margins while reading

Jotting notes is definitely a great strategy to better knowledge retention. When a certain paragraph stands out to us, we will usually highlight or copy the text, but instead, we should use our own words to summarize key ideas to make a stronger impression. Through this process, you are teaching and explaining to yourself on the points. If you are able to give an outline of the passage without hesitating, you can ensure you have really comprehended and digested the content.

Advertising

    3. Research on points that you don’t understand

    When you try to rewrite the summary with your own words, you may encounter points that you find ambiguous or vague. Take the extra 10 minutes to research deeper to get a fuller understanding. This doesn’t mean to throw yourself in at the deep end. Taking the extra step to research can help you understand the subject matter with more details, because most authors assume their readers have some sort of background knowledge of the topics prior to reading the books. For example, for a philosophical book, the writer automatically assumes the readers have a certain level of knowledge on different ideologies in the era that the book is written.

    4. Apply the knowledge to your real life

    As mentioned above, jotting notes leads to a better retention of information. Many people hold the misconception that the more detailed our notes are, the better we will retain what we have read from a book. While we are so focused on cramping every single bit of a book into our notes, we often forget that we are simply copying paragraphs from the book to our notes. Also, how often do you revisit your notes? Most people’s answer is never. So your hard work in jotting notes have completely gone down the drain.

    Advertising

    To make your reading and note-taking session more effective, try to incorporate your own life into whatever you are reading. What this means is when you are taking notes, also think about how the knowledge you read could benefit your life and solve real-life problems. When you do this, your notes will become more insightful and useful, helping you remember what you read from the book.

      Reading requires devotion of time and effort

      It may sound unnerving and stressful to spend much more time just to retain what you have read. It could be quite heavy at first, but as you follow the strategies more and more, your efforts will pay off and you will definitely have a better retention after reading each book.

      More by this author

      Frank Yung

      Writer. Storyteller. Foodie.

      Your Future Self Will Thank You For Starting To Do This For Only 10 Minutes Every Day 10 Best Standing Desks That Are High in Quality and Cheap in Price Finally, a Way to Avoid Jet Lag: The Jet Lag Calculator The Best Places Around the World to Retire in 2017 Take 5 Minutes To Read And Improve Your Writing Skills Forever

      Trending in Hobby

      1 Science Says Knitting Makes Humans Warmer And Happier, Mentally 2 18 Things You Need To Know Before You Get Your First Tattoo 3 17 Free Websites That Will Improve the Quality of Your Life Today 4 Streaming or Downloading: Which Is the Best Use of Your Mobile Data? 5 7 Fun Things To Do When You’re Home Alone

      Read Next

      Advertising
      Advertising
      Advertising

      Last Updated on February 11, 2021

      The 20 Most Creative Instagram Accounts That Will Inspire You

      The 20 Most Creative Instagram Accounts That Will Inspire You

      Instagram allows you to see exactly what inspires people and how creativity is drawn from their everyday life. We use Instagram to capture what makes us smile, what brings joy to our life, and what we are passionate about, and the accounts listed below are sure to inspire you in turn.

      Here are our 20 top creative Instagram accounts that you should be following today.

      1. Humans Of New York

      Brandon Stanton walks the streets of New York City taking street photography, and he gets his subjects to open up about life details that even many family members may not know about them. It makes you smile and connect with the images at a new level.

       2.  Paris in Four Months

      Carin Olsson moved to Paris and is documenting every part of her experience, from the macaroons to the Eiffel Tower with all of its shimmering lights. If you want to go to Paris but can’t get there today, Carin will take you.

      3. Civilized Caveman Cooking

      George Bryant offers up more than his love for cooking Paleo cuisine as he shares more about life, joy, and happiness. His coined hashtag is #hugsandbacon.

      4. Andrew Knapp

      Andrew has taken the world by storm with his adorable version of Where’s Waldo? His version is Find Momo, and stars his border collie.

      Advertising

      5. Idafrosk

      Ida Skivenes has developed a knack for food art. From the world of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to Strawberry Fields Forever, she has recreated it all with food.

      6. GrandmaBetty33

      Grandma Betty is fighting cancer and is inspiring others to smile and be happy in life. She brings a smile to your face instantly and is like having your grandma right beside you.

      7. Maya_on_the_Move

      Tania Ahsan captures the world of her cute bulldog, Maya, on her adventures in New York. Maya makes appearances that will make you smile, laugh, and inspire you to go out and create something special.

      Advertising

      8. Leoleoparis

      Leo captures the life on the streets of Paris. Most of his work is done in black and white, offering that iconic Parisian look.

      9. Jacob Santiago

      Jacob Santiago creates stunning, vibrant images around New York City, showcasing the architecture and streets. I’m sure you haven’t seen the streets of NYC like this before.

      10. Julie’s Kitchen

      Julie Lee showcases how everyday produce can create colorful art designs. At first glance, you think it is just a design; then, a second take illustrates that it is really fruits and vegetables.

      11. iloveplaymo

      iloveplaymo brings together photography and Playmobil toys in action. The images are up to date with current world events and everyday life.

      12. “Red” Hong Yi

      Red Hong Yi loves to paint without a paintbrush. Her style uses daily items to create lovely images.

      Advertising

      13. Alexis Diaz

      A breathtaking artist from Puerto Rico who loves to paint murals. Alexis’s work is featured all over the world.

      14. Murad Osmann

      Murad Osmann is a music video producer, but his claim to fame on Instagram has been his photographs with his girlfriend leading him by her hand.

      15. Simone Bramate

      Simone Bramate is a storyteller who just so happens to take delightful photos as well.

      16. Willie Kessel

      Willie Kessel brings beach life right to your smartphone. Amazing surf and lifestyle images that take your mind off of all of the work and stress in your life.

      Advertising

      17. Nick Ulivieri

      Nick Ulivieri is a talented photographer who loves to capture the windy city of Chicago and skies, especially during storms. His images are gorgeous and make you realize how wonderful life really is.

      18. Jo Jerry

      Jo Jerry’s landscape photos around Santorini, Greece, make you want to book a flight immediately. The bright colors and simplicity in the images make his photos stand out from the rest.

      19. GoPro

      GoPro uses fan-sourced images on their account that are all captured with a GoPro. Creativity to the max is used in these images and range from the grocery store to incredible surf.

      20. Vin Farrell

      Vin Farrell is a creative who works on the agency side for large clients and has a knack for photography. His iPhone captures amazing aerial images around NYC and the world.

      Featured photo credit: Andy via flickr.com

      Read Next