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19 Powerful Techniques to Build a Reading Habit (2019) | Nick Wignall

Find Your Why

List various reasons why reading is fun or enjoyable or important. As you stumble on things that seem especially meaningful, try to elaborate on them.

Because the more clear and specific you are about why a reading habit is valuable to you, the more it will become a part of your identity and therefore an enduring habit.

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The Essence

It’s important to have a deep willingness to read and grow in the process. Approach reading as a fun, enjoyable and transformational activity that ultimately impacts your life. 

With this kind of mindset, you’ll become intentional about the books you read by picking out those areas in your life that need improvement and plan towards growing to the next level by reading the right books that target those problem areas.

Determine Your Reading Goal

Start off by setting a goal. This goal should be articulate and backed up with a purpose.

For some, it could be a goal of reading 24 books in a year. Once you’re done placing a target figure to your reading goal, then divide them into smaller goals.

Make a List of Books for Each Month

Write out a list of the amazing books you want to read. Ask for recommendations from friends and mentors. 

By being intentional about your reading list, you’ll stay focused on your ultimate goals and avoid lurking at any book that passes you by. 

Warren Buffett
“Read 500 pages like this every day. That’s how knowledge works. It builds up, like compound interest. All of you can..."
Warren Buffett
Learning constantly

To get better results in life you need to learn constantly. And the best way to learn is to read effectively and a lot.

Upgrading your brain

A new idea, outlook on life, mental model, is all it takes for something to click inside your brain.

Your brain will start making connections between books that seemed to be on different topics. The more you read, the more links you form and the richer your understanding becomes.

Skimmed Read

Reading is a complex process that involves the brain's visual and auditory processes, phonemic awareness, fluency and comprehension. There are billions of pages available to read online, along with billions of print books sold every year. All this choice is making us want to skim our reading, as we are short of time.

There are trade-offs in this 'speedy' approach, as we are sacrificing the quality of understanding over the quantity of information.

Slow Is Good

The speed-reading habit is making us lose our deep attention and focus, gradually shunning denser, more complicated content. Instead of optimizing for speed, we need to optimize for comprehension, deep understanding, and retention of information.

Deep or slow reading, when the brain is attentive, absorbing, understanding and analyzing text expands our attention span and improves concentration and learning.

Better, Not Faster Reading

The brain develops stronger analytical skills and gets into critical thinking mode, forming new connections and even creates new ideas.

Deep focusing on a book is one of the best investments of your time.