Ever since I was a little girl I have been a reader. My mother read to me often which instilled a love of books early on and most importantly, a habit. This carried on all through school, then I moved out on my own. With a job and other obligations, I was no longer in the habit of reading.
A few years ago I decided that I was going to once again make reading daily a priority. I feel better when I read; it forces me to make time for myself during the day and it helps me sleep when I read before bed. But being a mom of a teenager and a preschooler as well as working from home, how is it possible to make time to read when you’re busy with kids, family, work, social obligations . . . life?
It isn’t always easy, but it is possible. If you are determined to carve out more time to read, these are the tips that I use. I find that they really do help. I hope they help you, too.
1. Keep your next book visible and handy.
I have found that keeping a To Read pile (or just my next book) out in the open has helped me a lot. My nightstand might be a little cluttered, but it gives me a visual goal that I can see. When I look at them it gives me the incentive to finish the book I am currently reading.
2. Keep an ongoing, current list of books you want to read.
I have had a Goodreads account for years and I have only just started actually using it in the past couple of months. I enter the books that I want to read in my Goodreads account as soon as I see something that interests me. This way I always have a list going and the list is with me at all times so I am able to check my list when I’m at the library or a bookstore. Goodreads will also give you suggestions based on the books you’ve read. I love that!
3. Make a Pinterest board.
This is another way that I keep a list of books that interest me. There are people pinning books lists all the time so I pin them and then choose a book or five to add to my Goodreads list.
4. Mark your progress online.
You can also mark your progress in Goodreads which helps with motivation.
5. Bring a book with you everywhere you go.
I don’t always read my book, but I do always have one with me when I leave the house just in case. A book or Kindle will fit nicely in most purses and diaper bags or there is always the Kindle app on your smartphone.
6. Read instead of playing around on your phone.
This is the hardest one for me and I’m not going to sit here and tell you that I have given up my phone. Trivia Crack calls my name and I have to keep up with people from high school that I will never see again, but I’m trying. Baby steps.
7. Read what you like.
Well duh, right? But really, how many times have you passed over a book because your friends have made fun of it? “Oh, Twilight sucks. Sparkly vampires, how lame.” or have made elitist comments about reading only the classics or literature. Come on now. Read what makes you happy regardless of anyone else’s opinion. If it makes you happy then you will read more of it and reading is good.
8. Set a goal and gradually increase it.
Today, make the goal to read a chapter. In a few days, read two chapters. Or choose a number of pages. Set a goal and stick to it. It will become easy and you will find that you are eventually exceeding your goal. You can also set a goal for how many books you would like to read this year and enter that number into your Goodreads account.
How do you find the time to read? If you can’t, what is your biggest hurdle to reading more?