Why reading more books won’t actually make you successful

Why reading more books won’t actually make you successful

Hi there! Today’s article might be sounding controversial to some people, its not bad for you to actually reason towards my path or even counter whatever this is. This is just in my opinion that being successful does not actually depend on the number of books you read in case some motivational speakers have been telling you that of which i know that some time in our lives we come across people that just think they know it all. My opinion though!

Nowadays the society revolves around two things; trends and efficiency.

Headphones with wires are now regarded as gadgets of the past. Direct messaging someone on social media platforms is an effective form of communication compared to posting letters. Mobile apps are used to open bank accounts. Multitasking is now regarded as a marketable skill.

Our later opinion on bookworms is evolving. Now reading books is suddenly a cool thing to do.

The shift has brought on a wave of new courses and YouTube videos claiming to help us consume increased amounts of content in less time, aka “speed reading”- essentially streamlining our reading habits. Nearly every month I find a some new article from someone claiming to have read 100+ books in a year. Who cares?!

This has only been further glorified by iconic founders and rich CEO’s promoting books as one of their secret keys to prosperity. There’s nothing outwardly wrong with this, but it has led to a fundamental misunderstanding about reading books and how they relate to one’s life achievements. You don’t tell a grown human being that cos of the books that you read you make more money from your business that is not related to the book.

Increasing the number of books you finish reading wont necessarily result in higher levels of intellect or accomplishment because reading in itself doesn’t make you more successful.

It’s about how and what you read that really matters.

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“In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you.” — Mortimer J. Adler

The way I see it, there are two ways to read any book you like to read:

  1. Slowly, efficiently, and with a goal. The goal being to learn from the book AND retain as much information as possible as you flip through each page.
  2. To finish it.

Seriously think about why you’re reading next time you pick up a book. Is it for pleasure? Knowledge? Success? This understanding will be help in selecting titles that you can read at a pace that is comfortable while promoting comprehension and real cognitive development.

If you are reading like a school student that is required to read for hours every week about topics that they are not always interested in, you’ll just be skimming with nothing retained. Useless right???!!!

Fast reading will not get us cadence and complexities of style and language. It will not get us anything that enters not just the conscious mind but the unconscious. It will not allow the book to burrow down into our memory and become part of ourselves, the accumulation of knowledge and wisdom and vicarious experience which helps to form us as complete human beings.- Susan Hill

In Conclusion

Some people really can read dozens and dozens of books every year; they truly love to read and create schedules that accommodate their passion. And in all honesty, I wish I put more of an emphasis on reading. I don’t prioritize it as often because its not my thing.

However, I think it is important to understand why and how you approach reading to reap the most benefits. What most people don’t realize is that the sheer volume of available content we read from social media statuses to magazine advertisements is blurring our ability to differentiate between skimming and comprehending.

Think of consuming books as a way to feed your mind in the same light as consuming food is how we feed our bodies. You want to input high-quality sources to output high-quality results.

You need to realize that the power of books isn’t knowledge; it is in being able to understand every bit of what you have read and apply that knowledge to your life.


About Syphonn

Syphonn is a Geographer, Graphics/ Web designer and Content Creator.

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