People always ask me, “How do you find the time to read so many books?” Between work and life, it can definitely seem impossible to squeeze in something additional. But, I have learned so many strategies that work and am here to share with you how to read more books so you too can achieve your reading goals and create a reading habit.
How to Read More Books
As to the “why,” that’s up to you, as your motivation can be to learn something new or to have a few minutes a day of self-care. The good news is this particular hobby has the ability to change your life in so many worthwhile ways.
Related Post: The Lifechanging Benefits of Reading
When Warren Buffet was asked how to prepare for an investing career, he responded to read 500 pages a day. He stated that knowledge compounds like interest, and I couldn’t agree more with his mindset on his reading habit. (Source)
I have noticed better reasoning, decision-making, and communication skills within myself from reading more. Without getting too deep, I truly believe that people reading more can change the world in big and small ways.
In June 2018, I realized I had read around 20 books that year and wondered whether I could ever hit 50 books in one year. Well, I hit 50 and kept going, reading 80 books in 2018. At the time of first posting this blog post in October 2019, I was reading my 99th book this year, even after planning my wedding and taking my honeymoon throughout the first half of the year, working full time and blogging. If I can do it, you can do it too. These are my tips for how to read more books.
Tips & Tricks on How to Read More Books
Always have a book on hand.
Always have a book available to you, even if it’s via the Kindle app on your phone. This helps you squeeze in some reading when you unexpectedly have time on your hands, such as in line at the grocery store or in the waiting room of a doctor’s office.
Tip: If you don’t know what to read, check out my customizable guide to what to read next.
Read in numerous formats.
Reading via numerous formats, such as paperback, ebooks, and audiobooks also helps make books more accessible to you when the time arises. For example, if you are stuck in traffic, you can listen to a book (a great way to start reading classics), and when you are sitting and waiting, you can physically read. If your e-reader’s battery is dead, you can read your paperback.
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Set a goal and track it.
Setting a goal and tracking it provides accountability and motivates you to watch the numbers climb. It gets into your psyche and pushes you forward in ways you may not expect. I track my reading goals with reading calculators like Goodreads and with my Reading Journal.
Engage with other bookish people.
Surrounding yourself with like-minded people can also motivate and inspire you. There is power in community. Goodreads is a great place to connect with bookish people. You can start by following me on Instagram @jules.literarylifestyle as well as the hashtag “Bookstagram.”
Avoid or limit time-wasting activities.
We all think we don’t have any time, but when you become mindful of acknowledging when you are doing things that are wasting your time, you find a lot more free time. If I notice myself scrolling on social media with no real purpose or watching a television show that I’m not totally into, I stop and pick up a book inside. It has dramatically provided more free time for me, and it can provide more free time for reading for you too.
Busy people multitask. That’s just how we get through life. And reading makes for a great multitasking activity. I listen to audiobooks while I do mundane tasks, like driving, cleaning, getting ready, and doing laundry. It can often add full hours of reading into my day, and it helps me “get through” the tedious nature of these tasks.
Buy an electronic reader.
Electronic readers are great because they can put you in the mindset of being a person who reads more, and because they don’t contain other distracting apps, like social media. Many also don’t have a harmful glare. I use and recommend this specific Kindle Paperwhite.
Check the current price on Amazon. If there’s a sale, grab it. They only happen a few times a year, so that’s a good deal!
Schedule reading time.
Sometimes when you schedule a certain time of day as “reading time” it becomes a habit over time. It can also force you to fit reading into your daily schedule the way you would schedule a meeting or a workout.
Buy books on sale and take advantage of free books.
From your local library to Amazon sales, once you start taking advantage of free and cheap book offers, it’s hard to stop and your TBR (to be read) list will pile up to an ongoing selection so that you always have something new to read.
Read numerous books at once.
It may sound crazy to read numerous books at once, but it works if you do it right. I read 2-3 books at a time. I read them each in different formats (i.e., one audiobook and one paperback book) and I read books of different types at the same time (i.e., one fiction and one non-fiction). This helps you to always have a book on hand. When the books are very different from each other, it also helps to avoid confusion. Lastly, it allows you to read the book you feel like reading most at any given moment.
My last tip is to read faster. When you are listening to audiobooks, you can play around with upping the speed. I usually listen to books at a speed of 1.5 or more. You barely notice a difference. And when you are reading non-fiction or lighter non-fiction, you can play around with reading every third or fourth word.
Implement the above strategies for how to read more books into your life and you will be well on your way to your reading goals!