Estimated reading time: 16 minutes
Are you someone who likes to read, or at least likes the idea of reading? But somehow never find the time to do it- don’t worry you are not alone.
We are all aware that reading is a great habit to have. And with many benefits for our mental and emotional well-being. Whether it’s a non-fiction book, a literary fiction, or a simple children’s book, it has the power to transport us to new worlds, broaden our horizons, and provide us with a abundant knowledge.
However many of us finds that it is (approximately) 100 times easier to reach for the TV remote or phone than for the book. Yes, making a reading habit can be a challenge, especially when watching Netflix is so darn easy to do.
But worry not! In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of reading and provide you with tips on how to make it a habit that will last a lifetime.
The Benefits of Reading
One of the coolest things about reading is that it can help us get a deeper understanding of the world around us. By exposing ourselves to new ideas and perspectives, reading can broaden our horizons and help us see the world from a fresh perspective.
It can also be incredibly therapeutic. It has a power to provide a much-needed escape from the stress of everyday life. By taking you to new worlds and introducing you to new characters, it can provide a sense of escape and help you forget about your worries. For a little while.
Your reading habit is also a great way to boost your mental and emotional wellbeing. Studies have shown that reading can help reduce stress, improve mental clarity, and increase happiness and well-being.
In addition to these benefits, reading is also a great way to expand your knowledge and make you a better critical thinker. Whether you’re into non-fiction or fiction, it can give you new insights, help you analyze things better, and make you a more well-rounded and thoughtful person.
Reading Habits: How to Make Reading a Habit
1. SET ASIDE READING TIME
The first step to building a successful routine is to set aside a specific time each day for reading. This designated time can be 30 minutes in bed, first thing in the morning, or any other time that works best for you.
One of the key benefits of setting aside dedicated reading time is that it helps you build a consistent routine. Consistency is the key to making any habit stick, and this is especially true for reading. The more you read at the same time each day, the easier it will become to develop a reading habit that lasts.
Furthermore, when you consistently set aside time for reading, you’ll find that the time you spend reading adds up quickly. Before you know it, you’ll have spent hours each week reading and exploring new worlds and ideas.
2. Set aside reading goal
Whether it’s reading one page a day, a chapter a week, or an entire book a month, set a goal for yourself and stick to it. This will help you establish a routine and make reading a habit. That list can serve as a roadmap for your reading journey and keep you focused on your goal.
When making your list, you can think of it in terms of numbers, genres, writers or subjects. That way you can diversify your reading material and expose yourself to new ideas and perspectives.
For example, you could set a goal to read two books this month, one from a specific genre, and one from a different genre. Allowing you to challenge yourself and expand your reading horizons. And if you’re an avid reader, you could set a goal to read a book a week or a book a day.
No matter what your goal is, make sure it’s achievable and realistic.
3. Take breakes and read
Switch up your habits and embrace reading as a way to relax and unwind. Instead of reaching for your phone, try picking up a book. Short on time? You could pick one filled with short stories or poetry even. Not only will you give your eyes a break from screens, but you will also engage your mind in a much more fulfilling and relaxing way.
Regardless if it’s just a few minutes here and there or a longer dedicated reading session, incorporating books into your daily routine can make a positive impact on your day. So next time you have a moment to spare, reach for a book instead of your phone and give yourself the gift of relaxation and rejuvenation.
In addition to providing a (much-needed) break from screens and daily stressors, reaching for a book has the power to broaden your perspective, expand your vocabulary, and increase your knowledge about various subjects. So don’t let this great opportunity to improve your mind pass by you. Embrace reading as a break activity and see all the positive effects that come with it.
4. Track your progress
Track your progress: Use a reading tracker or a desk calendar to keep track of your reading goals and habits. This will help you stay on track and see the progress you’ve made.
The digital age has brought with it a flood of tools and apps aimed to make our lives easier and more organized. Reading is no exception, and there are several apps and online trackers available that can help you stay motivated and on track with your goals. So if you want to track the number of books you read, set reminders for time to pick up your next book, or connect with other readers- there’s an app for that.
Using an app or tracker to support your reading habit can also give you a visual representation of your progress and help you set achievable goals. For example, you can set a goal to read a certain number of books per month or per year, and track your progress as you go along. This will help you stay accountable and keep you motivated to continue reading regularly.
5. Join a bookclub
Reading is an incredibly personal experience, but it doesn’t have to be a solitary one. In fact, making reading a social activity can be a great way to stay motivated and increase the amount of books you read.
Whether it’s a book club at your local library or an online group, connecting with others who share your love of reading can be extremely satisfying. By joining a book club, either an existing one or starting your own with friends, you have the opportunity to discuss the books you’ve been reading with others who have similar interests.
Book clubs can take on many different forms, from deciding on a book of the month to meeting weekly for discussion over coffee. These meetings provide a space for you to delve deeper into the books you’re reading, and to practice your analytical skills. By engaging in discussion and hearing different perspectives, you’ll be able to gain a deeper understanding of the themes and ideas presented in the books you’re reading.
In addition to all that, book clubs can also be a great way to connect with others and make new friends. Whatever you’re reading- fiction, non-fiction, or anything in between, there’s bound to be someone out there who shares your interests and loves to talk about books.
6. Experiment with different formats
Physical books, e-books, or audiobooks- experiment with different formats to find what works best for you. This will help keep reading interesting and enjoyable.
For those who struggle to sit down and read, audio books can be a great alternative. Many popular titles are now available in audio format, allowing you to listen to your book while driving, working out, or doing chores. With various subscription apps such as Audible, you have access to a wide selection of audio books.
Additionally, there’s also a large selection of audio books available for free on YouTube, so there’s no need to break the bank. By adding audio books into your daily routine, you can make the most of your downtime and continue to make progress on your reading goals.
7. Choose interesting books:
If you’re not interested in what you’re reading, you’ll quickly lose motivation. Choose books that interest you.
This can mean switching from fiction to non-fiction, or squuezing poetry into your reading habit. By doing so, you’ll not only prevent boredom, but you’ll also expand your knowledge and broaden your horizons. The possibilities are endless, so embrace that.
8. Read multiple books:
Also, don’t limit yourself to just one book- read multiple books at the same time to keep things fresh and interesting.
Reading that way is a great way to maximize your reading experience and make the most of your time. By having different books for different parts of the day, you can take advantage of your natural rhythms and focus to get the most out of your reading.
For example, consider starting your day with mindfulness or self-improvement books in the morning, when you are more receptive and focused. These types of books can help set a positive tone for the day and provide you with practical tips and insights to help you live your best life.
In the evening, when your focus may be weaker, consider switching to a novel or a work of fiction. Reading a good book can help you unwind and escape from the daily stress, making it the perfect way to end your day.
9. READING BEFORE BED
Reading before bed is truly the easiest way to make reading a habit. It’s an opportunity to wind down from a busy day and make the transition to sleep more seamless. Many people find that reading is a more relaxing and calming activity compared to watching a movie or TV show before bed. Not only does it help you fall asleep faster, but it can also improve the quality of your sleep. By replacing screen time with book time before bed, you can establish a routine that is beneficial for both your mental and physical health.
And, as mentioned before, reading before bed provides an opportunity to escape into another world, forget about the day’s stressors, and start fresh the next day. Incorporating reading into your bedtime routine can be a small change that has a big impact on your wellness.
10. Find a comfortable reading spot
It’s time to find a nook! It can be in your home or away from it. If you are outside look for a quiet park bench, or a coffee shop, a place where you feel relaxed and comfortable. This will make reading a more enjoyable experience.
If you are staying in, it could be a comfortable chair, a cozy window alcove, a balcony, or any other peaceful location. Just make sure to add some soft pillows and a lamp to enhance the atmosphere. Having a dedicated space for reading can help you fully immerse yourself in the story and forget about the distractions of the world around you.
This peaceful retreat can be a haven for your love of reading and a place where you can escape into new worlds, characters, and adventures. So take the time to find the perfect location and create a cozy, inviting space that will always inspire you to pick up a book and lose yourself in the pages.
11. HAVE IT ON HAND
Having your reading options at arm’s reach can be a great motivator to pick up a book instead of mindlessly scrolling through your phone. The saying “out of sight, out of mind” holds true for many of us, so keeping a book or two within close proximity is a great way to encourage reading more.
You could carry a book in your purse for those moments when you find yourself with some extra time, or leave a book by your bedside for those nights when you’d like to wind down with a good read before going to sleep.
Keeping a book on your coffee table or workspace is also a great idea, as it provides a quick and easy option for those spare moments throughout the day. The more accessible your reading materials are, the more likely you are to reach for them when you have a few minutes to spare. So make sure you have a few options available, and you may find yourself reaching for a book more often.
12. Reward yourself:
Give yourself a treat after finishing a book to help keep you motivated and excited it. It could be a cup of coffee, a new book, or a relaxing bath, something that rewards you for your hard work and dedication to reading.
There are numerous reasons why rewarding yourself after finishing a book is important.
- It helps you stay motivated and excited about reading. If you know that you’ll be rewarded for your efforts, you’ll be more likely to look forward to reading and continue building your habit.
- Rewards serve as a form of positive reinforcement, which can help you establish a reading habit more quickly. Each time you reward yourself after finishing a book, you’ll be strengthening the positive associations you have with reading and making it easier to continue.
- Rewards can help you stay on track with your reading goals. By setting achievable goals for yourself and rewarding yourself when you reach them, you’ll be more likely to stick with your habit and make reading a part of your daily routine.
- Rewards help you celebrate your accomplishments and recognize your hard work. Whether you’re reading for personal growth, to expand your knowledge, or simply for the love of it, finishing a book is a significant accomplishment, and it’s important to take the time to celebrate it.
So, how can you reward yourself after finishing a book? The options are endless, and it’s essential to find what works best for you. Some people prefer to treat themselves to a cup of coffee or a sweet treat. While others may prefer to treat themselves to a new book, a relaxing bath, or a spa day. Whatever your preference, make sure to choose a reward that makes you feel good and helps you stay motivated.
Making reading a habit can be a challenge, but the rewards are well worth the effort. Whether you’re reading for personal growth, or simply for the love of it, there are countless benefits to making reading a daily habit. By setting achievable goals, finding a comfortable reading spot, and making reading a priority, you’ll soon find that reading becomes a habit that you look forward to each day.
So why not start today? Find a good book, set aside some time for reading, and start building a reading habit that will last a lifetime. No matter if you’re interested in non-fiction books, literary fiction, or a simple children’s book, there’s something for everyone when it comes to reading. So why not take advantage of all that reading has to offer and start building a better, more fulfilling life through books today? As James Clear said in his best-seller Atomic Habits- “Every action you take is a vote for the person you wish to become.”
FAQ Reading Habits
Yes, reading can become a habit. By setting achievable goals, creating a comfortable reading environment, and making reading a priority, it is possible to develop a daily reading habit.
To start reading as a hobby, you can:
1. Set a reading goal.
2. Choose a genre that interests you.
3. Find a comfortable reading spot.
4. Make reading a priority in your daily routine.
5. Start with shorter books and gradually increase the length.
6. Join a book club or discuss books with friends to stay motivated.
To start reading every day, you can:
1. Set aside a specific time for reading every day.
2. Make a reading schedule and stick to it.
3. Find a comfortable reading environment.
4. Choose books that interest you.
5. Start with short reading sessions and gradually increase the time.
6. Make reading a priority and prioritize it over other activities.
7. Track your progress and reward yourself for sticking to your reading routine.
Reading can potentially increase your intelligence and cognitive abilities, but it does not directly change your IQ.
Yes, reading can make you smarter by improving cognitive abilities such as vocabulary, memory, concentration, and critical thinking skills. Regular reading can also broaden your knowledge and understanding of the world, and provide exposure to new ideas and perspectives
FAQ Getting Back To Reading
1. Lack of time
2. Burnout: Reading the same type of books repeatedly or reading too much in a short period of time.
3. Lack of engagement: Reading books that don’t hold your interest.
4. Distractions: The presence of distractions, such as technology or other activities.
5. Physical or mental health: Certain physical or mental health conditions can impact focus and motivation.
To get out of a reading slump, try switching up your reading material, setting aside dedicated reading time, finding a comfortable and distraction-free environment, taking breaks from reading if necessary, and reaching out to friends for book recommendations or to discuss books.
FAQ Reading Too Much?
A reading hangover refers to the feeling of sadness, emptiness, or dissatisfaction after finishing an especially good book and having to return to reality.
When you read a lot, your brain is exercised, leading to improved cognitive abilities such as vocabulary, memory, concentration, and critical thinking, as well as increased empathy and understanding of the world
The amount of time you should spend reading every day depends on your personal goals and schedule. However, a good starting point is to allocate 15-30 minutes a day for reading.