How To Remember Everything From Audiobooks

Ionutz Kazaku

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Listen more effectively with these scientific & practical tips.

Why you don’t remember anything after you finish an audiobook?

We don’t listen to audiobooks just for the sake of it. Our goal is to remember and use the newly acquired information for the future. In order to make knowledge stick, we should take practical and scientific approaches.

Here are the tips which help me remember everything and listen more effectively to audiobooks — 

Tip #1: Increase the Listening Speed

You think you won’t be able to concentrate?

The default audiobook speed is slower than our day-to-day conversations. This means that if you are listening to 1.0x speed, you won’t be able to focus because it will get very boring and you will constantly distracted. However, if you are multitasking, it is better to decrease the speed.

Find what works for you. I listen to 1.3x while I take walks and do chores.

Tip #2: Choose the Right Book

Don’t listen to non-fiction.

Some books are better on audio and some are better to be read. I find it very difficult to concentrate and remember anything when listening to non-fiction. These books tend to have lots of scientific facts, insights, studies and new ideas that should be read instead.

I like listening to fiction and biographies. Both of them are a form of a story which comes more natural when you are listening.

Tip #3: Combine Activities

Multitasking helps you learn better.

Steve Jobs believed his most creative ideas came when he was walking. Walking energizes our brains. When combining it with audiobooks, a better understanding of the book and new, creative ideas will spark.

You are being more productive.

That doesn’t mean you should be working, scrolling through social media or doing other activities which will distract you rather than help you.

Tip #4: Impress Yourself

The tactic I used to do in school.

Lie to yourself that you find the information in front of you super interesting.

Often times we reach a point in our book that we don’t find particularly engaging. When such moments come, lie to yourself and act as if it is indeed engaging. Both your interest and alertness will spark, which will lead to remembering what you read that day.

Sounds funny but, it works amazingly.

Tip #5: Choose a Good Narrator

Experience books from a different perspective.

A good narrator will help you bring the story to life by creating a cinema inside your head. They know when and how to emphasize important moments. Dialogues are also performed the right way, with the correct intonations and inflections.

Voice actors are a game changer.

Tip #6: Take Notes & Revisit Them

The most effective tip for learning.

Most audiobook apps have the option to save clippings and take notes at specific moments in the book. They are a great way to keep track of new lessons or facts that you didn’t know before. The option to write down notes with your pen is always available.

I find it easier to take 30-second-clippings and afterwards transfer them to my digital journal.

Tip #7: Associate the Information

Link the text to something you already know.

If there is a particular insight or principle you wish to remember, think back to a time when you were part of a specific example involving the principle. You will understand the lesson better because you have already experienced or seen it in the past but, in a different way.

You will rarely remember the author’s point of you but, you will always remember yours.

You will always be the main character.

Tip #8: Listen & Read the Same Book

Joe Rogan’s advice.

When David Goggins came to JRE Podcast, Joe mentioned that he read David’s memoir and afterwards listened to the audiobook as well. It is a great way to view the story from a different perspective. It unlocks new insights that you haven’t noticed when reading.

Also, if you want to re-read a book, listening to it instead will uncover new insights as you are no longer the narrator, you are the listener.

I really hope these tips will make the listening experience more effective and productive. Keep on learning!

Manage the books you’ve read/listened with this template.

Thanks for reading :)

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Writing about Books & Reading. Reading books, listening to podcasts, writing articles — constantly learning.

Las Vegas, NV
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