View Full Version : Reading Techniques


Fraser_0762
08-10-14, 01:08 PM
I'm trying to get more into reading, but have the typical issue of being unable to process the information for very long. By the time I get half way down the page, my mind is no longer making sense out of what it is that i'm reading, which basically results in me reading the same sentence/paragraph over and over again until it finally sinks in. :doh:

I'm wondering if any clever clogs on here have came up with a work around for this? Does anybody know any mind techniques that can improve information processing when it comes to reading?

Medication is out of the question, so I need something more practical.

vpilar
08-10-14, 02:08 PM
After reading each paragraph I try to don't look at the text and explain for myself what I just read... I repeat this a few times to make sure I have understood it.

For each section, I write the key points or highlight them.
If it's important to really understand the text with all details, then I'll end up with writing lots of summaries in different levels for a single paper or chapter of a book for example.
By summaries in different levels I mean, for example for each section I write a summary just to make sure I understand the main ideas mentioned in the section! but I don't want to have summaries that are longer than the text itself, so I summarize my summaries :) .. sometime I do that a few times...
As you can see, this demands lots of efforts :) so as you can guess, I don't do it quite often :) ... But whenever I have done it the results have been incredible :)

It also depends on the kind of reading you want to do...
If there is huge book or lots of papers for example, then this strategy is not very efficient :) Since you don't want to dig into the details and understand the text deeply!

That's actually one of my problems now! I start reading a paper very carefully, using the same strategy as I said, but I don't get to finish it since I spend too much time on understanding the details!
So what I try to do in these kinds of cases is this: I try to skim through the whole paper (or at least a few pages of it) in a specific time that I have determined for myself (usually half an hour to 2 hours or so..), while trying to understand the main points and the logic of the paper. I still try to write a few key points beside each section... or write question marks for the parts that I have no idea what they are talking about.
Then I try to go back and read each section again, and try to understand the general message in each section without digging into the details as much as possible..

It should be noted that even though reading and understanding the academic texts might be easier for non ADDers, but is still very challenging for everybody! ... you're not supposed to understand a scientific paper/ book by a glance!

.. However if the concern is about non-academic texts like Novels or news, and something like that.. then the problem is probably just distractions, and memory (at least for me!) then what would help I guess is trying to think about the story... after each section.. and remind ourselves about what has been read so far... it works as a review for me and helps me remember the story better. Also when you know that you're committed to do this, you pay more attention next time, because you really don't like to do it (going back and read again...) :p

Some tips that always help me in readings:
---Walking while reading!
---Reading loudly, rehearsing! Think like your life depends on understanding the text at the moment :p I never learn anything while reading in public! (for example in library) because the way I need to read in order to understand and enjoy the reading, people will either call police on me or mental health centre! :lol::cool:
---Summarizing and reviewing my summaries is the key for me!
---Talking to people, discussing the text with friends, colleagues after each reading session! This is super helpful!

Sorry for the long response..

apoeticdevice
08-10-14, 08:47 PM
Hey, I have a technique that I use.

I literally read a word at a time. It sounds insane but I feel that it helps me make sense of what I am reading. I gave up rereading sentences and paragraphs.

Try reading this article that is not related to ADD but it definitely changed my issues.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/27/spritz-reading_n_4865756.html

Hathor
08-10-14, 11:48 PM
By the time I get half way down the page, my mind is no longer making sense out of what it is that i'm reading, which basically results in me reading the same sentence/paragraph over and over again until it finally sinks in. :doh:



Does this happen in similar quantity no matter what you are reading, or is it quite variable?

Is there anything you can read without a real serious problem? Stephen King, magazines, anything?

Fraser_0762
08-11-14, 02:28 AM
Does this happen in similar quantity no matter what you are reading, or is it quite variable?

Is there anything you can read without a real serious problem? Stephen King, magazines, anything?

It can happen with more or less anything, even if it's a topic i'm interested in. I tend to do better with audio books as my auditory processing seems considerably better. I tried using one of those text to audio programs. Needless to say, it didn't have the desired effect. :lol:

Fraser_0762
08-11-14, 02:30 AM
Hey, I have a technique that I use.

I literally read a word at a time. It sounds insane but I feel that it helps me make sense of what I am reading. I gave up rereading sentences and paragraphs.

Try reading this article that is not related to ADD but it definitely changed my issues.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/27/spritz-reading_n_4865756.html

That looks interesting. Unfortunately I need to be able to read quicker than that as I have a lot of information to digest.

Hathor
08-11-14, 03:55 AM
I tried using one of those text to audio programs. Needless to say, it didn't have the desired effect. :lol:

Oh well I don't know what to say, perhaps the text to audio will work soon and if not there are new audio books all the time. :)

KarmanMonkey
08-12-14, 01:53 PM
For me a few things help:
1) Short bursts. Especially when it's a heavy read, I need to take it in extremely short intervals. When I was in university, I discovered that the only effective way for me to study was by only spending 5-10 min on each subject before switching to the next. I don't need to stop entirely so much as just shift gears to keep my mind engaged.
2) Chosen distractions. Let's face it. When we're reading and unable to get into that hyperfocussed state, our brain is going to go looking for something more stimulating. I choose to give it something to chew on that I know won't stop me from reading. Examples: Music without lyrics, pencil/pen to twirl, doodling, rocking chair, foot tapping (be conscious of other people nearby)
3) Frequent breaks. Even if it's stretching or grabbing a glass of water from the fridge. I need to make it a "break on a mission" though; if I just take a break without a task in mind, I'll end up doing something that turns a 5min break into a 3hr one :-P
4) Don't "Power Through It". I find that if my mind is wandering and I'm not retaining what I'm reading, it never pays off to try to force myself to keep going. A short strategic detour is far more effective (and far less frustrating) than rereading the same paragraph 72 times.
5) Tactical Reading. Especially with school, and now that I work in mental health, it simply does not pay to read an entire paper. I skim. I read the intro, conclusions, and a handful of other bits, then if I feel I need more information I go digging for what I need. From what I've learned, us ADDers have to choose quality over quantity when it comes to study. We can learn quickly, but we need to be strategic in our approach.
6) Most strategies you read will be useless. I'm referring, of course, to the 99% of the online guides and suggestions that weren't written with the ADD mind in mind. Try not to feel bad if you can't do things the same way you see others doing it. Find your own method, your own strategies. Try everything until you find something (or several somethings) that work!

peter00
08-12-14, 08:17 PM
Does anyone else tend to skip over words that look too hard to read? Feel this may be a trait of dyslexia.

Darkneko
08-12-14, 09:45 PM
I only have reading trouble with textbooks for uni...I usually right notes from the book and in another coloured marker or pen draw arrows from it putting the information into context. Like for my studies most of my professors had a specific focus and the information fits into that. Example is for one of my subjects Depression and its treatment was the focus and when we learned the theorys of depression, we focused on how they created the treatments. It takes time but its worth it because it really sticks in. Relating it back to something you know helps too.

petester
08-13-14, 12:48 AM
I have they same problem with pretty much no solution I love to read but when im stressed ill read a page and not process it sometimes ill stop and think about the subject and the page will come to me I guess my mind is so hyper I can do two things at once I can dwell on a problem and read it overwhelms me though if you figure it out could you let me know? Thanks

Mom2GnJ
08-13-14, 03:21 PM
I agree with text to audio or audiobooks, especially if you're an auditory sort of learner.

lmg2474
08-13-14, 05:33 PM
I basically have to highlight every single sentence as I go along because the bright color is stimulating. I find that books with brightly colored pages help me focus a lot more than ones that are simply black and white (or worse, electronic). So maybe just try highlighting every sentence (which is extremely inefficient) but for me it's the only thing that works.

apoeticdevice
08-21-14, 01:44 AM
That looks interesting. Unfortunately I need to be able to read quicker than that as I have a lot of information to digest.

Well let me know what works out for you because I can definitely use any help so I can attain what I read.

Ing3nium
08-21-14, 02:45 PM
I'm trying to get more into reading, but have the typical issue of being unable to process the information for very long. By the time I get half way down the page, my mind is no longer making sense out of what it is that i'm reading, which basically results in me reading the same sentence/paragraph over and over again until it finally sinks in. :doh:

I'm wondering if any clever clogs on here have came up with a work around for this? Does anybody know any mind techniques that can improve information processing when it comes to reading?

Medication is out of the question, so I need something more practical.

Try visualising whatever you're reading. E.g. if reading "door" then visual a door. A picture usually stays in your head longer than words.

Fraser_0762
08-21-14, 04:06 PM
Try visualising whatever you're reading. E.g. if reading "door" then visual a door. A picture usually stays in your head longer than words.

I'll think about a house door, which will then turn into a door for a NASA shuttle. Before I know it, i'm flying high in the sky, meeting strange alien creatures from other galaxies..... err, what was I reading again.....