Finding More Time To Read
After university I found it very hard to pick up a book and turn the pages, the excess of researching and creating essays was overall just a bit much for my puny brain. The intense academia stunted my creativity for a while and stopped an essential part of my inspiration coming through. It’s an incredibly mindful activity that can allow you to not only escape for a little while but on occasion provide you with the connections you need in other aspect of you life, for me my book choices often spark some lightbulb moments that influence my creativity and ideas. Since then I’ve become much happier to turn the pages but it took time, so I thought I’d share a couple of ways I slowly found my way back to (almost) devouring books once again.
Do you have any tips for getting back into reading ??
Set Reading Goals
I’m not quite there to read so many books in a month / year but giving yourself simple manageable goals can help ease your way in , they could be as basic as:
#01 || Reading a couple of pages every other day
#02 || Try for 1 book a month
#03 || Revisit an older read you know you’ll get some joy out of
#04 || Try a chapter a week / maybe 2 / maybe a chapter a night
Don’t Be Afraid To Say Bye To ‘Bad’ Books
Since university, I’ve tried to leave excessively wordy, intense sometimes dull reads behind but like the cliche you never can tell what you’re going to get with a book. We only have a limited time so attempting to muscle on through a book you’re not enjoying is wasted energy. There will always be a new book love to discover but it’s important to not give into the guilt of not loving a book despite thinking you would. They may not necessarily be bad books but they may not be right for you and your wants at the moment.
Pick Something That (Might) Appeal
Like many things our tastes and interests change over time - this is also true of our book choices. When I was younger my genre of choice was predominately fantasy, whilst I still love my ol’ favourites (Terry Pratchett forever), of late I’ve been reaching more and more page turners that are related to creativity, art and photography. Choosing from a topic you have more of an inkling for could make things more likely to encourage you to pick up the next read. I also once read that sometimes it just isn’t the right time for a certain book, on occasion books can sit on our bookshelf for a long time but that want is still there to read it - so a book may appeal but it can take a little longer to get round to it.
Use ‘Dead’ Time
Unfortunately, we as a generation / society spend far too much time on our phones and social media, this is something I’m not to proud to admit but I fall victim too as well - far too easily. My efforts in filling my time aren’t always as productive as I’d like them to be. To consume rather than actively participate is such an easy trap to fall into. It can take some big mindful adjustments to your routine and how you approach down time but many of our ‘dead time‘ activities can be swapped for a few pages of a book like …
#01 || Before bed instead of TV
#02 || After work / Sunday nap
#03 || Scrolling social media
#04 || On public transport
#05 || At an appointment
#06 || During your lunch break
Keep A Book Beside You
A tip so simple but can be over-looked is to physically keep a book with you: in your school / university bag, on your bedside table, in the bathroom etc. It can be the best reminder to pick it up and read a couple of pages. Something that is just as important is to find your preferred method of reading be it a Kindle, comic, pdf or a physical print and anything inbetween - having a format you’re more taken with can make the act of picking up your next read even easier. For me I’m a physical print kind of girl, it’s incredibly comforting to sit with a book either basking in the sun or cuddling underneath a blanket in the colder seasons.