Recently, I read that if you read about one subject, for one hour each day, in seven years you will know enough on that topic to be considered an international expert.
This New Year I have given myself a challenge: To start this process in not just one area of study, but three. Heaven only knows how far I will get, but, as incentive, I’ve chosen to blog about the subjects as I go.
An hour a day means that I will be devoting 7 hours a week to each chosen field of study. I plan to post, every Friday at midnight, my notes/thoughts from each hour of reading that week.
It wasn’t easy choosing my three subjects; for I have MANY interests. All of which I’d love to know about expertly. However, there were a couple that stood out, and one that simply fell into my lap.
My first choice was Child Development. My husband and I are hoping to have children very soon and a well-informed (humble) parent is a good parent. To kick off the New Year, I’m starting with The Psychology of the Child, by Jean Piaget.
My second choice was Orthodox Christianity. I have been Orthodox since age 6; and while there is much that I know of the church, the older I get, the more I realize what a small piece of its theological grandeur that is. My starting book will be Everyday Saints and Other Stories, by Achimandrite Tikhon.
The third topic is Antiquing. There are a couple reasons for this; firstly, because it is a subject of great interest to me. And, secondly, because I already owned the book I will be starting with. And that is money conscientious (I’m going to be reading roughly 1000 books, in total, and that gets expensive). The book is called Antiquing for Dummies, by Ron Zoglin & Deborah Shouse.
Before beginning, I thought it would be prudent to find out just what my reading speed actually is; because, obviously, the faster I am, the more I can read in an hour (My eventual goal is to get down to one book a week).
According to the Staples test, I read 167 words per minute. That made Me 33% slower than the national average. However, after some practice, roughly 20 minutes in total, I took another reading test by ReadingSoft. According to it, I am up to reading 320 words per minute, however my comprehension is only 55%.
Throughout this challenge I shall be working to improve both my speed and comprehension. Some of this will happen naturally but I’m hoping that by being mindful of it while reading, I will increase my rate of improvement.
The websites I used for research and testing, and the books I’m starting with:
Child Development (365 HRS/YR for 7 YRS) – The Psychology of the Child
by Jean Piaget
Religion (365 HRS/YR for 7 YRS) – Everyday Saints and Other Stories
by Archimandrite Tikhon
Antiquing (365 HRS/YR for 7 YRS) – Antiquing for Dummies
by Ron Zoglin & Deborah Shouse
The article about speed reading in general; http://www.forbes.com/sites/brettnelson/2012/06/04/do-you-read-fast-enough-to-be-successful/#5520cec158f7
The first and second tests I took; http://www.staples.com/sbd/cre/marketing/technology-researchcenters/ereaders/speed-reader/ http://fourhourworkweek.com/2009/07/30/speed-reading-and-accelerated-learning/