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How to Remember Everything You Read

Learn how to remember everything you read in this Howcast video about memory techniques featuring memory expert Barry Reitman.


Hi, I'm Barry Reitman, author of Secrets, Tips, and Tricks of a Powerful Memory, and I'd like to discuss how to remember everything you read. Of course, there's different types of reading. You may be reading something very technical, or something for homework that's kind of difficult, or you may be reading for pleasure but still want to remember it. That will dictate how elaborate a scheme you're going to use.

But in general, you're reading let's say a novel. It's interesting and it's the kind of thing you want to discuss, maybe have a book club at the end of the month, and you want to be able to speak intelligently about it. The first thing I'm going to suggest is are you enjoying it? If you're enjoying it, that book is going to unfold almost like a motion picture, and what you see like a motion picture, is much easier to remember than words that you read on a page. That doesn't cut it for anybody.

If perhaps it's for an exam in school, it's still a novel, but now you have to remember some of it, I would encourage you to finish a chapter or a section and then go back and write it down. Maybe diagram it and it's a story about Christopher Columbus coming to America and landing in the West Indies, and I'm going to see those boats, those three boats sailing across the sea. I'm reading the why. I'm reading the words. But not really, I'm seeing the picture. By doing that, and then when I finish that chapter, if it's something important to me that I have to remember for an exam in school, I might write it out in my own words. I might actually draw silly pictures of those three boats coming to some islands in the West Indies. No, I don't have to be a good artist. The very act of drawing it will help embed those pictures in my mind and that's how I do it.

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