It’s a funny thing, Dewey’s. You can sit in your couch, a cold September evening, thinking that you don’t have enough time to read and then suddenly, a month later, you’re spending your entire weekend doing exactly that. Reading. Because it’s Dewey’s so now you have the time to enjoy those books that have been standing on your shelf for ages or that single love story that has been on your bedside table for weeks.
Most of us have full time jobs or studies that keep us busy during the week. We are balancing books, a job, friends and maybe a sport or two, a significant other, kids and so on. We have more than enough to spend our time on. It’s called real life and sometimes it’s a sneaky bastard, taking way more hours of the day than we want it to. Then April or October is coming along and we are taking an entire weekend out of the calendar, mark the days with a red X, doing grocery shopping in advance, cuddles up in the couch with a blanket and all those books … And we are taking the time and the energy to read. Just read. Have fun. Celebrate books with other readers. Enjoy our little private moment of pure heaven.
But who says that that moment can’t last forever? Or at least a little while longer after Dewey’s? If we have to be honest to ourselves, who’s deciding that we don’t have ”the time to read” in November or May? You can have all the time you want, but you have to stop for a moment and give yourself that piece of time. And maybe be a little creative. Make it a new habit of yours to take Dewey’s with you all year round. Here are my five most successful tips to more reading in your everyday life.
- If you can read – read
The first habit is to simply take the time to read when you want to. Instead of flipping through Facebook or all those blogs, instead of playing small games on your iPhone, close the laptop and leave the phone on the table. Take your book and make a moment that doesn’t necessarily require any brain power but just entertains you. When you first find yourself there, with an open book, you are much more likely to stay there and read a few of those pages. The hard thing is to actually sit down without electronics, laundry or whatever.
- Don’t snooze, do the reading thing
Another time where you might usually use your time differently is in the morning. Do you snooze? I do. “Just those 10 more minutes” I keep telling myself. But it’s a bad habit. It makes me more tired than I was at first and I never go back to a real sleep after the alarm went on for the first time. So now I’m trying to get up the first time I hear it. It gives me more time in the early morning and I can read while eating breakfast.
- Every book counts so make them count
We are living in a time where electronics are filling most of our days and for the book world that means that we have used the last couple of years to discuss audiobooks and later on e-books. Some readers are claiming that those “don’t count” because “it’s not a real book”. Like when you are re-reading because “you know the story”. But here’s the truth: No one can tell you what to read or if it “counts”. And who’s counting? Does it really matter? You can enjoy an audiobook while you are doing the laundry or do the cleaning Saturday morning. You can bring your e-reader to work and read on the bus or on your lunch hour, even though you can’t bring a heavy book with you.
- Read in public
I have almost an hour’s transport twice a day to get to work. Sometimes I’m in a big line in the bank/supermarket/whatever. Or I’m waiting for the train that is late – again. But instead of just staring out the window or getting mad because of the delay I’m always bringing a book with me. That gives me 2 times 25 minutes to read in the train and the same amount of time where I can listen to an audiobook if I want to. Plus, the extra reading if I’m in line, delayed or something else. I can squeeze reading in almost everywhere; it doesn’t have to be hours at the same time. 5 minutes here and 5 minutes there is 10 minutes and suddenly you have read the entire book.
Another trick of mine is reading at the gym. It sounds impossible but it’s actually not. If I’m just running I’ll bring my Kindle and put it on the treadmill where I’ll put the water as well. Instead of looking at the small screen with MTV, I’ll read. Try it; it’s not as hard as you think. Or you can listen to an audio book instead of music while your doing cardio etc.
- Bring a book to the bathroom
Okay okay, it might sound a little nasty but hear me out: You can read while you’re doing “your thing” if you want to – I don’t. But instead I have found myself reading quite well while brushing my teeth. It has always been an activity quite boring for me. I’m wandering around the entire house, unable to stand still for a minute and it had always felt like ages for me. But now I’m bringing the book with me and the time will pass way faster. I can usually read a few pages every time and I actually think that I might brush my teeth much better now than before. If I get caught up in the book I forget the time and suddenly I have been brushing for 10 minutes. Lol.
What is your best reading trick? How do you sneak in some reading in your life?
Thank you to Katja for a great post!