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The Lost Art of Slow Reading

By Keyla Sweeney

First thing I must say is, I’m guilty. The internet age with its videos, memes, social media posts, in addition to all the new distractions we enjoy has fully converted us into text skimmers. Yes, there are many benefits about being a fast paced reading, especially when we are students, however in the long term this practice diminishes our understanding and capability to reason.

In order to grasp deeper Truths we must resist the impatient to hurry on in reading. We may’have fall into the habit of skim so rapidly that often we miss the main part of what the author is trying to say. We are not tasting the ideas. In her article This 1897 Text Gives 3 Clues Why Today’s Students Can’t Write, author Annie Holmquist list skim as one of those reasons. She also cite Dr in Latin, Edwin Lewis, a rhetorician and novelist, who said: ”Thoughts cannot be read so rapidly as words. To get at the thoughts and really to retain the valuable expressions, the student must scrutinize and ponder as he reads. Each word must be thoroughly understood; its exact value in the given sentence must be grasped.”

The forgotten rewards of reading slowly are so beneficial that we should consider to bring them back by appointing time apart to simply read. Needing some motivation? Here is some:

According to a study from the University of Sussex, UK, in 2009, reading slow is more effective than listening to music, drinking tea or taking a walk in relaxing the mind.

Reading slow also improves the ability to concentrate, reduces stress levels and deepens the ability to think, listen and empathize with others.

Reading slows helps us to decelerate from the fast pace of modern life.

When you read slow a history or a novel you disconnects and join into a different world to engage with fictional characters and time, often more entertaining than watching a movie.

Getting into the habit is not hard. Start for booking 7 mins during the next week, and let us know in the comments how it goes. Many great old books can now be found online for free.

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