How to remember what you read

We always want to memorize what we read, but actually, we don’t succeed, because regardless of our wishes our memory has some peculiarities. For example, one of those peculiarities is that when the information is not interesting for us, our brain considers it useless and sends it deep inside our memory. Let's see how to remember what you read more easily ))

  • Introduction

  • We always want to memorize what we read, but actually, we don’t succeed, because regardless of our wishes our memory has some peculiarities. For example, one of those peculiarities is that when the information is not interesting for us, our brain considers it useless and sends it deep inside our memory.
  • Answer the questions...

  • In short, we can say that before reading you should answer three questions. First one is “What do you read?” (if we give an eight-year-old boy a text about wave genetics he will stop reading after some words because information written in it would be boring for him. It means that context is crucial). The second question is “Why do we read?” (You should clear up whether you are reading to inform about it your friends, or because you have an exam tomorrow or you want to know the answer of a question you are interested in, or maybe there is another reason). And the third one is “How do you read?” (is it an e-book or a paper book, are you stressed or relaxed during the reading, are you concentrated on the text or are there other things drawing your attention?). The answer to the first question is easy to find, and we can get to the second one, about which we should carefully think because it is the most important. Here we can see the solutions of such questions as whether we will remember it for a short time or a long, we will read it concentrated or distracted, what percent of the text we will remember, what parts we will memorize and so on. For example, if you are just reading to pass the exam tomorrow and you were not somehow familiar to that topic before reading it, then you will forget that information after the exam, but if you are learning to use it afterward in your life, then you will hardly forget it for some time. Anything that you do in your life you do for a particular purpose regardless of whether you realize it or not. The same is with the reading. You should understand what your goal is, why do you read so that afterward you don’t be surprised and shocked when you don’t succeed. So reread this part and try to grasp what is written. It is essential to read it carefully before you go ahead.
  • Visualizing method

  • Through the exercises of the previous chapter, you can develop your imagination and the ability to create associations, which will help you to practice this method easily. Using your prospering imagination (especially visualizing) and the ability to get connections between those mental images, you will be able to memorize the plot of the text, the essential ideas, and its general construction and so on. At the beginning before you read a text, imagine that your brain is a projection booth, where the text you read is reproduced through pictures and voices. In this way, the text becomes for you a trailer or film filled with decorations, characters, intrigues, and further events.
  • Basic principles

  • 1) While reading, visualize what you read! Fix the moments, emotions, mood, physical feelings that you experience during the reading. It could be difficult at the beginning as reading and visualizing can hamper each other, but actually, this is not a significant problem as visualizing happens very fast and it doesn’t manage to impede your reading process. You may sometimes need to stop reading make your mental images clearer and then continue reading. 2) Pay attention to the sequence of mental images, which you have during reading. Are they in the right order and logically continue each other or are they in wrong order, as if they are a combination of different parts taken from a film, like the mosaic? If the visions are in the wrong order, there can hardly be any connection between them (or even no connection), but if they logically continue each other as the events in text, then the connection between them will be powerful, and after repeating it for some time, it will be fixed in memory. Also, try to fix the ideas of the pictures that come to your mind. 3) Try to order the conceptions of mental images and put in one construction. For example, each chapter of a story represents a group of perceptions, which together comprise a particular assembly, and the group of those constructions are included in the whole story. In most cases the chapters of the books are composed of subparts, which are separated by subtitles, so we can take a subpart as the smallest construction and within or around the mental images aroused by the subtitle collect the other mental images. 4) Try to explain conceptions and the mental images, which you will discover reading the text. It is important what the author wants to say and how. The answers to these two questions will be clear for you if you try to interpret the author’s work from your perspective. Instead of trying to reject or confirm the author’s ideas try to introduce your thoughts about that text. The aim is not the result (rejecting or confirming) but the process (interpretation), and if you like the author, maybe it will influence that you unconsciously try to find facts to prove his opinion. To avoid this, you should realize the process and try to analyze objectively.
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