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When I was in 7th grade, I had a lot of trouble reading. My mother used to sit by my side, and explain each paragraph of each school reading assignments to me because I didn't understand what I was reading. She would have to read each paragraph to me, and then after each paragraph, she summarized what we just read.

In class, I tried to hide the fact that I couldn't read. My teachers gave us the last 10 minutes of class to start our reading homework, and I would sit there for the last ten minutes of class staring at the page, pretending I was reading it -- I remember a terrible feeling of not wanting to get in trouble for not being able to comprehend. I had to wait until I got home so my mother could explain it to me.

How did I ever get into Cornell University? By eighth grade I started understanding a little on my own, but I was reading at an incredibly slowly rate. In eighth grade, I got hold of all the speed reading books I could get my hands on. I read them all very slowly at the time. I even went out and took a course on speed reading. Then I developed my own system which was easier and produced quicker results. I started practicing these techniques every day, and as I started to read faster, my understanding increased. I found that I stopped daydreaming and thinking about other things while I was reading, and started getting the larger meaning. I was reading faster and comprehending better.

I found that when you read slowly, word by word, you get lost in the words, lose the bigger picture, and your comprehension drops. When you read faster, your concentration actually increases and your comprehension goes up because instead of getting lost in the words, you see the overall picture.

Senior year of college, I decided to put my skills to the test. I decided to not do any reading the final third of the semester in any of my courses until one week before the final. I was carrying a full load, taking five courses, and each had about 350 pages of reading to do for that third of the semester. I allowed myself only one day to do all of the reading for each class. On Monday I did all the reading for my psychology and the Law course. I had to read 200 pages of handout reading material, in addition to 7 chapters of text, each having at least 25 pages. In the past I wouldn't have been able to get through two chapters in a day, and now I was getting through two chapters like it was nothing. The next day, I did all my reading for another course, and the next day I did the same thing for another course. I was able to do all the reading for each course in a day, and I did extremely well on the exams.

The technique of speed reading which led me to be able to do this is what you are going to learn today. My passion for teaching others is driven by my excitement of knowing how much others can improve and seeing them improve with my guidance. The techniques you are about to learn, I have taught to thousands all across the country who have already doubled and tripled their speeds. It is my sincerest hope that you will benefit from reading this book, and then use what you learn here to help others succeed as well.

If you are thinking, "I am a really slow reader, there's no hope," don't worry. You are going to improve tremendously in this chapter. If you are a fast reader, that doesn't mean you won't improve either. You are going to improve dramatically, as have executives of large businesses and students of top IVY League Universities. I was recently speaking at both Harvard and Cornell University giving lectures. Many students of the students in the audience were fast readers to begin with. Each student in those large filled rooms at Harvard and Cornell tested their initial and final reading speeds. We will do the same for you in this book. Of the students attending those two programs, over 80% at least doubled their reading speed by the end of the hour and a half! So again, if you are a good student or a fast reader to begin with, you will still improve greatly!

John F. Kennedy was a speed reader. He read seven newspapers and a book every morning while President. He was upset at his cabinet for not being able to keep up with him, so he hired a speed reading instructor to come in and teach his entire cabinet. The same techniques he had them learn are the same techniques you are going to learn today.

Did you ever read something and have no idea what it was about? Do you notice that you start daydreaming or drifting while you read? Are you the type of person who has to always re-read what you read, because you don't understand it? I used to be the master of these type of things, and now I've mastered faster reading with an increased concentration and comprehension. I'm going to show you how to break these habits. I'm going to teach you a little technique of using your hand to reading faster.

You're going to learn how to double your reading speed in this chapter. You're going to learn how to widen you eye span, push yourself to read faster, prevent re-reading paragraphs, and stop daydreaming while you read. You will learn how to be awake, alert, and reading at your best using these techniques. Ready?


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