Since starting my blog and Instagram page almost two and a half years ago one question comes up time and again.
How do I manage to read so much?
In all honesty the answer is that I just love reading. As such I’ll always find time to do it. Add to that the fact that I don’t watch that much T.V, preferring to pick up a book instead, my commute is long gone (hello home working) and I don’t have any dependents. All this means I can rattle through reads at a reasonable pace.
I can’t claim to be a fast reader, at best I’d say I’m moderately fast, and I tend to be very prone to distractions. What I can say is that I have mindfully carved out reading time each day. Making it as much a part of my daily routine as exercise and my midmorning coffee. It is much more enjoyable than the former and a perfect pairing for the latter.
I see reading as an act of self care, an opportunity for mindfulness and to expand both my empathy and understanding of the world. Since the start of the pandemic this daily act of self care has been a touchstone of sanity, a little certainty, and escapism, when everything else seemed to be a little uncertain.
It is, of course, a wonderfully entertaining thing to do as well.
If you’d like to read more books in 2022 I have a few hints and tips which work for me:
- Set yourself goals which are achievable – that could be to read a certain number of books in a month or a certain number of pages a day.
- However, don’t let these goals spoil your reading experience. See them as a fun challenge, but not something arbitrary. Life happens, reading slumps happen, remind yourself of this.
- If setting big goals feels too daunting you could set targets which are smaller – start with something simple like reading 10 pages a day or for 10 minutes each morning.
- Make your reading time a real experience – light candles, play some calming music, curl up in a cosy and comfortable seat. This time is a gift so treat it as such!
- Related to this, think about creating a reading ritual. For me I like to make my evening/post work reading special by lighting a candle (check out the fabulous botany and books for my favourite candles), putting on some atmospheric lighting and blocking out all other noise and distractions.
- And a word on distractions – put down that phone. Aeroplane mode or do not disturb setting is your reading friend.
- Try and carve out dedicated reading time each day – look at what times would work for you. For me that’s first thing in the morning (with my first cup of tea of the day) and before I go to bed each night.
- Connect with others who love reading. Being part of the bookstagram community is such a joy. You’ll find people to buddy read with, find people who want to talk about the joy of reading and you’ll find yourself inspired to pick up different books.
- Learn which genres, authors and types of books you love. Seems a little obvious I know but if you have a shelf full of books you know you’ll love then you’ll be more inclined to pick them up. Though I absolutely encourage you to read outside of these comfortable reads.
These are just a few of my ideas. Do you have any suggestions?