Who among us wishes they had more than 24h in a day?
I often think about all the things I could do with a little bit of extra time. I could go to that yoga class in my hometown I’ve been dying to try. I could go out with friends more instead of seeing them once every few weeks. Or I could bake more often because who doesn’t love more cake?
The list of possibilities is endless, but there’s one thing all bibliophiles share: we wish we could read more because, let’s face it, our TBRs are endless.
But reading can easily take a backseat if you allow it. Before you know it, you haven’t opened a book in months because you’ve got other things to do (studying, working, going to football practice, practicing for your recital, etc.)
To help you read more, I want to share what helped me be more productive.
1. READ ON YOUR COMMUTE
This is my number one tip. Have you ever considered how many hours, days, weeks, months you spend on public transport your whole life? Let me tell you, it’s a lot. Personally, I spend two hours on a train every day. That’s ten hours a week. It would be a shame to let that time get wasted, wouldn’t it?
Reading on the train has been a life changer for me. In the mornings, most passengers listen to music, read the newspaper or quietly sleep against the window. I used to fit into the first category, but I found that reading a book suited me much better. Surprisingly, it gives me energy and makes me excited for the day to come.
It’s a little trickier in the evenings. Most passengers are excited they get to go home and talk about their day to colleagues they share their commute with. For me, this means it’s harder to read since I need my peace and quiet to focus. But no worries. That’s what tip number two is for.
2.LISTEN TO AUDIOBOOKS
Now, some people consider this to be cheating, but I’m not one of them. Audiobooks are a perfect substitute for traditional reading. As I’ve said in the previous section, it’s a great way to continue reading your book when your surroundings are too loud and distracting. You can just pop in your earphones, close your eyes, and focus on the words and the story.
Audiobooks are also useful in other situations. Do you have to fold laundry, do the dishes, or make dinner? Why not listen to an audiobook while you work? Trust me, it makes chores a lot more enjoyable. Time will fly by and before you know it, you can curl up in the sofa and read another book.
3. READ WHAT YOU ENJOY
This one seems fairly obvious, but too many people read books they don’t enjoy. As you may know, I rarely (if ever) DNF a book, but I know that others get into a reading slump simply because they’re not enjoying the book they’re reading so they’d rather not read anything at all. Sound familiar?
One piece of advice: get rid of it.
If you’re struggling with time, the last thing you need is to read a book that makes you feel like you’re wasting it. Now, I’m not saying you should give up on every book after five pages, but there’s also no point in sticking with a 300 page book if you’re not enjoying it by page 100. Cut your losses and pick another one.
4. PARTICIPATE IN A CHALLENGE
The last thing you want is another deadline, right? Wrong. I’m here to tell you that setting a reading challenge will do wonders for your productivity. Committing yourself to a monthly or yearly goal such as the Goodreads Challenge will motivate you do keep reading. Let’s face it: nobody likes to lose.
5. JOIN A COMMUNITY
Are you bad at motivating yourself? Do you want someone to push you to read more, share your passion with someone, ask for recommendations? Joining the book community might just be the thing for you. Whether you decide to join the world of book blogging or bookstagrammars, you’ll find a wonderful community of like-minded people who share your passion and who’ll understand what you’re going through.
Do you like my tips? How do you find time to read? Do you ever get into a reading slump? Let me know in the comments!