There are all sorts of interesting statistics out there about how we live our lives. Every few years, some major publication will give the subject another go, and compile all sorts of weird, wacky, and wild stats related to how we spend (or waste) our time. Take for example, this piece from the Mirror a few years ago.
Perusing it, you’ll learn all sorts of things that will help inspire you to spend your time more productively, and perhaps investigate a life hack or two that may help you save time and improve personal efficiency. Consider the fact that the average woman spends 136 total days applying her makeup and cleaning up for dates (men get by with wasting just 46), or the fact that people spend nearly an entire year of their lives home sick from work, and all sorts of interesting associations and connotations should immediately begin leaping out at you.
One stat that didn’t make this particular article was how much time the average person spends reading. You can see this data in infographic form courtesy of the people at Russia Beyond the Headlines here, who compiled it using data taken from the World Culture Score Index. Even though the USA is towards the bottom of the list (likely due to alternative forms of media proliferating in comparison), the average person still spends on average nearly 49 minutes per day reading. Over your lifetime, this extrapolates out to nearly 2.75 years; a surprisingly high amount of time if you think about it.
Now switch gears, and contemplate life hacks for a moment. Almost all of them are useful – the most popular ones particularly so – and can definitely save you some time. However, you’re saving a few minutes here and there in most cases; hours at most. What if you could shave some serious time off a more substantial demand on your time? For example, the time you spend reading?
“One of the biggest benefits of the eyeQ program is that it can double or triple your reading speed, along with helping increase comprehension and detail retention at the same time” said Jeff Flam, CEO of the eyeQ program by Infinite Mind.
This means that over the course of a normal adult lifetime, someone who is able to speed read will save anywhere from a year to 18 months of time over someone who cannot. Alternatively, they will be able to digest that much more content; a speed reader reading an extra 400 words per minute over someone without the ability will be able to digest approximately 8,700 more full-length novels during the same amount of time spent reading. Considering the average public library holds around 90,000 books or so, this is a massive difference.
Think of all the extra information you will be able to absorb or retain, or the amount of time you’ll be able to save that would otherwise be wasted. Speed reading is definitely one of the most useful skills and life hacks a person can consider investing their time into developing, no matter what their profession or personal circumstances may be.