How to read 52 books in a year

I must confess, I am not a great reader by any stretch of the imagination. I would certainly fall into the category of the person who only reads books when on holidays. So, when I came across this short podcast I was interested to see what the advice was. Jim Kwik reinforced the benefits of reading, broke the goal down into manageable pieces, and has given me a simple framework to help me execute. For those interested the podcast details are below

Podcast Name: Kwik Brain with Jim Kwik

Episode Name: Read 1 Book a Week (52 Books a year)… Without Speed Reading

Episode Length:13 minutes

Episode Link: Click Here

Date: 28 March 2017

Or for those who prefer to read, below is a short summary we have put together for you…

Jim believes leaders are readers and that someone who reads 52 books a year will have a huge advantage over the person who only reads 2 books a year and I certainly cannot argue with that.

Some initial points he raises before getting into the tips are

  • The average CEO reads 4-5 books per month
  • The quicker you learn the quicker you earn and you learn more knowledge through reading
  • If a person has decades of experience in a certain field we have the ability to download this information and turn decades into days
  • Warren Buffett reads 500 pages every single day. Knowledge builds up like compound interest and he devotes 80% of his day to reading.
  • A person who reads has a huge advantage over the person who doesn’t. The person who doesn’t read has no advantage over someone who is illiterate.

If you have a book that has been sitting on the shelf for a long time and haven’t got past the first chapter it is becoming shelf help and not self help. So here are Jim’s tips to help you read one book each week

  1. Keep an active book list – everyone has a To Do List but Jim recommends keeping an active book list too. Whenever you hear a recommendation for a book write it down or enter it into your Smart Device to refer back to.
  2. Start by testing your reading speed – the simplest way to do this is picking up a book, putting on your phone for a 60 second timer and seeing how may words you read at a normal pace. Jim suggests an average reading speed is 200-250 words per minute.
  3. Measure how long it takes you to read a book – The median word count for books on Amazon is 64,000 words. If you are reading at 200 words per minute it takes you 320 minutes to finish that book. This equates to 45 minutes reading per day to finish that book in a week. You now know how much time to allocate to reading each day to achieve your goal.
  4. Schedule your reading – most people have the intention of doing but fall down when other things get in the way. Schedule the reading at a time you know you can execute and treat it with the importance it deserves.

Jim finishes the podcast by also pointing out that over time it is likely your reading speed will increase so the time need to achieve this goal should reduce over time. Imagine if your reading speed were to improve threefold – you would then be able to read one book a week by allocating 15 minutes of reading per day.

Good luck – let me know how you go!!


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