Reading is definitely something I know I should do more of, but somehow, I just don’t prioritize it all the time. Does anyone else do that—knowingly not do something you enjoy and that’s actually good for you? Since I do truly love it and always crave more of it, I’m taking charge. I figured writing this article would hold me accountable (hopefully?!). First up, I’m trying to make tweaks in my routine to actually make time to read—because for me, that’s always my excuse.
This is a similar concept to choosing a time to work out—the best time is the time you’ll actually go. So, the best time to set aside for reading is whenever you’ll actually do it. Where can you find moments of silence? Or have free time? For me, that’s right before bed or first thing on a weekend morning. I struggle with sleep anxiety, so giving myself a half hour or so of reading calms me down and I actually look forward to it. On the weekends, it’s a nice way to slowly move into your weekend days (and a side of coffee is a must!).
Without book recs, I don’t think I’d ever read. Asking friends and family for their favorites helps to create a never-ending list of books I know will more than likely be incredible. And for me, if I have a really good read to look forward to, it helps me stay motivated and excited. I’ve also heard about the idea of doing monthly book swaps with friends, as opposed to book club where everyone’s forced to read the same thing. I definitely want to start this up with my group of girls!
Having one on hand
When I’m conscious about reading more, I try to keep my book in my bag. That way, whether I’m waiting for a friend at lunch, am on the train, or pretty much anywhere, I can turn to that instead of my phone on autopilot. A lot of the time I don’t think I have enough time, but somehow I’m always caught up on my Instagram scrolling. This is a healthy swap!
If you’re still looking for a little extra motivation to finally pick up that book you bought last year, you’re in luck. Reading can have such a positive impact in different areas of your life, so if you need more reasons to carve out time, think about these benefits:
Benefit #1: Mental stimulation
Your brain requires exercise just like the rest of your body and reading is the perfect workout. Instead of looking at keeping your brain active and sharp as a chore, get into a good book and you won’t even notice all the hard work you’re doing. Plus, you’ll improve your vocab and writing skills without even trying.
Benefit #2: Stress reliever
We live in a world where everyone is constantly on the go and stress levels are through the roof. Creating an opportunity for yourself to escape for a few minutes (or hours if your schedule allows) and just let everything else fade away is an invaluable way to spend your time. Even making time a few nights a week can make a big difference.
Benefit #3: Break from tech
I know reading on iPads and Kindles still technically counts as technology, but it’s a totally different ball game when you’re actually reading and not switching to Instagram every other minute. Taking the time to focus on something other than emails, social media and work should really be moved closer to the top of your to-do list. I personally love picking up a real book, so that’s my go-to for my occasions.
Have you noticed any reading benefits?
How do you make time for it?
Or are you totally not a fan?