Bottlenecks faced by readers

When we read, we hold information and concepts in our mind. Our brain processes words, sentences, and paragraphs to gain meaning. However, at times we may not be able to hold what we’ve read. In the process, we may have trouble grasping the meaning of the content. We may also tend to forget the beginning of a passage by the time we get to the end. Here are some challenges that inhibit our reading ability, and some tips to overcome them.

Losing track
Sometimes we can lose track of what word we are on, or we can lose track of what line we are on when moving from one line to the next. Losing track while reading wastes time and can obstruct our comprehension.

 Not able to focus

Halfway through while reading a simple passage, we have no idea what we just read. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? It’s called ‘distraction’ in short. Instead of paying attention to the matter, we could be thinking of what someone said, or drift away in the excitement of an upcoming event, or have a constant urge to check our cell phones, or lack the interest to read.

 Not able to conceptualize

Sometimes, it so happens that words by themselves make sense. However, we may find it difficult to understand what a passage is conveying, despite knowing the meaning of each word. We tend to read the passage over and over again until we can comprehend or ask someone to help us understand the content.

Not able to remember

Being able to remember all the essential details of what we read comes in handy at some point in time. If we are not able to recollect a few details even when we’ve just reached the end of the passage, we need to work on our memory retention.

Solutions to common reading problems

Give yourself a break
High levels of stress and fatigue can lead to the issues mentioned above. Our body needs enough rest/ sleep to function well while we are awake. Some good distraction that can calm your nerves will also help. In this way, you’ll be in a better position to do some productive reading.

Take Notes

While you are in the process of taking notes, you will stay focused on the content since you are making a conscious effort to read and understand. This will keep your mind from wandering and improve the chances of remembering things. It also helps you make a note of important details for future reference.

Mark your place

If you have trouble keeping track of which line or sentence you are on, then you can mark your place either by pointing to each word as you read it. Pointing to each word with your finger can help your eye see where it should be reading.

 Read out loud

While in the comforts of your room, you can try saying each word out loud, or at least mouth the words. This multisensory approach will allow you to see, hear, and feel (with your mouth) what you are reading. It can help you stay focused, understand better, and remember what you are reading.

Discuss with others

When you discuss with others, you get more out of your reading, and it may also help get more insights into the matter. This can also motivate you to read and enhance your knowledge base.


These are some steps you can take to overcome the previously mentioned reading problems. Be sure to practice them as you read to get the best out of your reading.

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