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Read for Speed

As a child, my parents allowed me to read anything, except comic books. My father said it wasn't educational and filled a child's head with foolishness. I obeyed him for the most part. Once in a while, at a friend's house, I would read "Mad" magazine and laugh for hours at the absurd humor. As a young adult I realized my father's theory was a miscalculation for progressing human development.

Variety in reading is crucial to success. It's even more important to read periodicals and books outside our chosen profession. For over 25 years I have made it a point to read a different newspaper everyday. Doing this has been invaluable in allowing me to adjust my discussion speed, depending on the type of person(s) I'm talking to at any time. It's allowed me to communicate more effectively with different people from the mail room to the board room. I've never been sports minded, but I read the sports section of a newspaper at least once a week. Why? It's helped me to at least be able to hold a topical conversation with someone; anyone. It also expanded my network of people who have helped me along the path of life.

Bonds between people are based on common interests. The more variety in our reading, the more we can expand our sphere of influence with people. We can speed up or slow down to get our ideas across to people.

Reading information only relevant to our job skills or professional is a speed trap. If we limit our reading, we limit our opportunities and the speed at which we can progress. Among other things, Success is directly related to variety in reading.

These days I read comic books, novels, pieces of paper I find on the street and the "Wall Street Journal". I always encouraged my daughter to read whatever she wanted. As long as she was reading, I knew she would maintain the right speed in school.

Go ahead. It's OK to speed today when you meet with someone.

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