NLP studied effective learners and effective teachers. From there, strategies have been developed and taught to people around the world to retain more information in a short period of time, from a book or a training manual.

Follow the 9 steps below next time to read a book to retain more information in a shorter period of time. This is not a conventional of reading a book. This is simply a very effective and improved way of reading lots of books fast and still retaining more information than the average person.

So take your book, a piece of paper, some pencils and get ready for it.

1. Read the table of contents. Familiarize yourself with the main ideas of the book. In lots of books, the table of content is lomg enough to be able to gather enough information to understand the main points of the book.

2. Read the appendices. Read the appendices carefully. They are sometimes summaries and important notes of the book. You can find charts and ideas summarized in such a way that you won’t even need to read the entire book.

3. Draw a mind map. Mind map have been used for centuries, for learning, visual thinking, brainstorming, memory, and problem solving by educators, engineers and people in general. A mind map is a great way to gather information visually. Buy an inexpensive box of markers and draw a map. The main idea of the book should be drawn in the center of the page. The different chapters should be drawn as a word/image that must be alone and sitting on its own line, radiating out from the center.

4. Read the beginning and the end of each chapter. The essential of a chapter is usually at the very beginning and the very end of the chapter. It is sometimes sufficient to get the whole idea and some details of the chapter.

5. Create another mind map. Now, you have gathered more information. Create a second map.

6. Let everything sink in. Wait for about a day or two. You can start another book if you want or just relax. Read you mind map again just before going to bed.

7. Create a third mind map, result of the 2 previous one. In the morning, gather your 2 mind maps and create a new one. From this new map, you may have specific questions, then go to step 8.

8. Research specific answers to questions you might have about a specific subject. Usually, drawing mind maps will trigger questions. Just go search for the answer and draw it on your map.

9. Complete your final mind map. Again, read you new map before going to bed and in the morning create a brand new and final map with main ideas, points, chapters and details of the book.

By following these 9 steps, you will read faster and retain more information than by reading as you were taught in school, from cover to cover, without taking any notes, trying to remember what you can.

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