I’m sorry about the absence of book posts lately, but quite frankly I’ve been struggling to find time for reading. So instead of trying to come up with a post about books that I’ve already read, I thought I’d just write about the struggle instead. I’m guessing that most of us can relate to the problem of feeling like you never have enough time to read. And not having time is possibly the oldest excuse in the book for not digging into your books.
But since reading more is one of my goals for this year, I need to get back on track. Here are a few tips that I’m currently using to make time for reading, and to tackle my ever growing to-read pile:
HOW TO MAKE TIME FOR READING
1. Switch Netflix to Novels
I love a good Netflix marathon as much as the next girl, and it’s not rare that I find myself staying up a bit too late to watch just one more episode. (We just finished watching all 8 seasons of Dexter, oops). Unfortunately that also means that there’s not much time left for reading in the evenings. So to make time for reading I’m switching that one more episode to reading a few pages of my current novel instead.
2. Have a Routine
Whether you love reading a book with your morning coffee or tucked into your pj’s at night, one of the easiest ways to get some reading done is by having a routine. I try to read at least half an hour every evening before bed. I find that it not only helps me tackle my reading list, but also gives me a better night’s sleep too.
3. Think About Transportation
If you have to commute to work, why not bring a book with you to pass the time? I spend nearly two hours every day on my way to work and back. And that time goes much faster when I spend it reading.
4. Keep a Book in Your Bag
Perhaps my favourite book quote of all time is Stephen King’s “Books are a uniquely portable magic”. And one of the reasons that I love paperbacks is because they are so uniquely portable. In fact, I try to keep a book in my bag at all times. So whenever I’m stuck on the bus in rush hour traffic, or find myself without company for lunch, I can read for a bit.
5. Set a Goal
Much like with anything else in life, the easiest way to get shit done is by setting a goal. Whether it’s an amount of pages, time or books, be specific and realistic. But don’t beat yourself up if you fall short. This year I’m participating in the Goodreads Reading Challenge, with a goal of reading one book a week. Some weeks I’ve read two books and some weeks I might get no further than two pages. But it’s already made me read much more.
6. Stop Scrolling
I don’t know about you, but I’m guessing I spend at least one hour every day just mindlessly scrolling through my phone. Whenever there’s a lull in my day, I tend to reach for my phone to flip through Instagram or Twitter. So instead of spending that extra ten minutes on social media (or looking at BuzzFeed articles of the cutest dogs you’ll ever see), dip into a book.
7. Read What You Love
This one may be obvious, but it can make a huge difference. At best I can finish a 600 page book in just one day and at worst it’s taken me months to read 200 pages, all depending on how much I loved the book I was reading. Trying to force yourself to read something you just don’t enjoy is never going to help you make headway with your reading list. Pick a book you love, and the pages practically turn themselves.
How do you make time for reading? Any great tips that I missed?