The library is an amazing institution that understands one universal principle: free shit rules. On top of easing any financial pressure to follow through on a book you’re not enjoying, there’s also the added incentive of finishing something before its due date. Also, almost every library now supports some kind of ebook borrowing program. So once you’re set up, you might not even have to leave your home to get library books.
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Watching live TV? Just sneak in a little reading. This works especially well while watching sports (especially football or baseball) at home. Just mute the TV and read in five-minute intervals. Fun fact: you could’ve read a thousand books in the amount of time you’ve spent subjected to ads. That's just one place. There are various other places you can sneak in a little bit of those pages.
I really believe that anyone can make time to read. Chances are you wish you read more since everyone feels this way. The secret is to not think of reading as a precious thing. If you’re only going to open a book on the off chance you have several hours to kill in a comfy chair with a glass of scotch, it’s only ever going to happen when you have several hours to kill in a comfy chair with a glass of scotch.
Most people keep their reading on their nightstand. If you read at night, you probably only get through a few pages before you get sleepy. Instead, I recommend reading in the morning. Even if you’re not an early riser, use the time you spend checking Instagram in bed to read a couple chapters. (I promise not much has happened since you opened the app at midnight.) Make coffee and ease your way into the day.
This is a bit of FitBit-style gaming. Keeping a list of what you’ve read will give you a sense of accomplishment. You can use GoodReads, but honestly, it’s just easier to jot books down in your phone’s Notes app. Also good: get into the habit of keeping a list of books you want to read next.
If you take the subway or bus to work, skip the podcasts and read. A half-hour commute can easily turn into five hours of dedicated reading time every week—enough for most people to read an entire book. You can try out using ebooks. But remember to read at your own pace. It's not necessary for you to skip podcasts completely. You can keep listening to them as and when you like.
You don’t have to commit to a book that drags. In fact, it’s more likely to make you quit your reading habit. Sure, you might feel obligated to finish a book you spent $15 on. If you feel uninterested, put it down and move on to a different one. You can always come back later to pick up where you left. Enjoying the activity facilitates the process.
Being well-read means making it a part of your daily life—not treating it as a luxury. And it’s not that hard. Like all things, it just takes a little bit of discipline and a little bit of trickery. Reading for a minimum amount of 30 minutes can also be beneficial.
We stack books with full intent to read them all, but then time escapes us while our To Be Read pile grows ever taller. Luckily, there are ways we can make time for reading.
Reading for pure enjoyment has been on a sad decline for a while now, with reports saying 24% of Americans haven’t read at all for pleasure this last year.
Life gets busy; books don’t get prioritized. Pew Research Center states the average American is still likely to read around 12 books a year.
But with over a million books being published each year, the undeniable fact is: we need to find more time to read.
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