It’s simple …I think. I’ll explain the steps in more detail sometime down the line, right now I’d just like to scrape the surface and talk about what, in a book, you would want to memorize anyway. Out of all the memory books that I’ve read, no one really covers this topic well, if at all. I think the basics are pretty simple though. Let me elaborate with some bullet points.
There should probably be different strategies for different books though. So what types of books might we come across?
- Story books -harry potter, vince flynn, tom clancy, etc
- Educational books -dummies books, books for class, self-help books, programming books, history books, etc.
What would you memorize in a book anyway?
- Table of Contents – be able to recall a chapter heading from its number (i.e. Ch 2. How to memorize…)
- Important points in each chapter
- The sequence of important points in each chapter – be able to talk about the chapter from beginning to end
- Every page in the book – recall what each page number was about
- Lists given in the book -numbered instructions, bullet points, etc
- Every single word in the friggin book, or maybe just a few particular passages word-for word.
Hmm…. what about the self-help books where you’re assigned things to learn and do? Well that’s not stuff to be memorized. That’s stuff, as you already know, to DO! When you’re reading books like that, you’re supposed to keep a list of “next actions” and to-do’s that you get from the book – you could just fold up a sheet of paper, stick it in the book, and write them on there.
In this post, we’re not talking about actionable items. We’re talking about stuff to be memorized.
Now, where’s the fun, or desire, in memorizing all this junk if you can’t do it really quickly and easily and be able to recall it as if you had actually studied the material over and over? There no fun in that at all. If you’ve ever read any memory book worth its salt, you’d know that memorizing stuff is not as hard as our peers, grade school teachers, and college professors made it out to be. On the contrary, it’s actually really easy … and fun! Did I say fun? Yeah, it’s actually fun.
Most of the people who write the memory books are magicians with a memory show, scam artists who stole someone else’s material, self-help books that don’t know what they’re talking about, and pointless drivel that was published to turn out a cool million. While some of the methods are great and some of them are completely missing the good stuff, a lot of them are targeting the wrong audience -or so it seems to me. In my opinion, it would be great if elementary school kids learned this memory-speed-reading stuff from the get-go; imagine how kickin rad they could be if they were able to start out memorizing books at the age of 10. Think about it – when they’re like 25, they would be winners, at least in that (reading) aspect.
Also, Speed Reading. Speed reading is great and all, but going faster does not mean you’ll remember more. None – NONE – of the speed reading books that I’ve read (a lot) show you how to ACTUALLY remember that stuff that you read. They’ll just tell you to skim the chapters before you read them, then skim again, and again, then read it. You gottah read it three times before you start to remember anything.
Anyways, if the magician memory guys and the speed reading crew and the school kids would get together, they could probably make some real magic happen. And that’s why I’m here. I’d like to get the ball rolling, and show at least a few people how memorizing a book, or anything else that you read, is fairly easy.
Stay tuned for the next post in this series! For now, I’ll leave you with some reading material.