By Angela


a. Audio Books – Techniques for a Positive Experience

b. Children’s Stories with Important Messages

Reading was one of my favorite pastimes. Not only did I read for pleasure, I also made sure I kept up with my professional reading. After my brain injury, I could only read short pieces at a time. Books, which gave me so much enjoyment, were sources of torture. . I took notes on things that I read and read them over and over again to help me remember what I had read. When reading from books, newspapers or magazines, I felt like I was drowning in a sea full of words. I would get sick to my stomach and have migraines from either reading or listening so intently. And my eyesight would go blurry and take a week to return to normal.

I became so frustrated, I gave up on the thought of reading. But I missed the enjoyment I used to receive from books. So I took another approach. I went back to listening to books, but this time, instead of listening to a CD three or four times until I finally knew what was going on, I let go of the idea that I must remember what I heard. I told myself it was good enough to listen and enjoy for the moment and I didn’t need to remember the story.

Although I don’t know what most therapists would think, this strategy is working for me. I’m glad I’m not in school, since there would obviously be the pressure of having to remember what I heard and be able to talk intelligently with regards to what the story was about, etc. For me, this goal was much too large, required too much effort whereby I could not accomplish tasks necessary for everyday living. The consequences from spending this much time and energy on listening/reading and remembering far outweighed the benefits. If I was going to make any progress in this area, I needed to break it down into smaller pieces where I could experience some success in reaching my goals. (Click here for Audio Books – Techniques For A Positive Experience)

Have you experienced difficulty with reading and/or remembering? What strategies have helped you? Each of us have problems with different things which will require different strategies. Share your story and tips so we can learn from one another.

© Angela Cramer, 2008


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