Guest blogger, #Bookstagrammer, and #BookTokker @saraplanzreadz is back with tips for getting the most out of your reading time!
Finding the Time
Reading has been a part of my life since I was very little, but it's never too late to make reading a part of your day. Here are a few tips to fit more reading time into your life and get the most out of it.
- Start your day and end your day with a book. Keep a book beside your bed so that it is the first thing you look at when you wake up and the last thing you see before you go to bed. I know it can be tempting to start and end your day with your digital life (emails, social media, news, etc.), but spending a few minutes each day reading can help you center yourself for all that life throws at you.
- Work reading into your workouts. If you make the time to work out, use that time to multitask and read a book. Adding a book to your workout gives you the time you need for reading, and it helps pass the time faster and in an entertaining way. Consider it exercise for your body and mind!
- Audiobooks allow you to read EVERYWHERE! While commuting, exercising, working around your home, or grocery shopping, you can listen to audiobooks. And yes, listening to an audiobook does count as reading. In fact, some people retain more while listening to audiobooks than they do while reading a physical book.
- Always have a book with you. Bringing a book wherever you go gives you the ability to use quiet moments you encounter throughout the day to work in a few extra minutes of reading.
Maximizing the Time
Now that you have found the time to read, using that time wisely will allow you to get the most out of your reading experience. Here are a few things that I do in order to truly enjoy a book.
- Put away devices while you read. This is always the first thing I do when I sit down to read. Take a look at your phone and find where it shows you the amount of screen time you are spending on it each day. I guarantee you will be shocked by how much time you are spending on these devices. Put it in another room or set your phone to Do Not Disturb to remove the distraction.
- Get comfortable. Comfort is key to allowing yourself to sink into the book you are spending time with. When I read at home, I take a few minutes to eliminate any distractions and surround myself with whatever I need to get comfortable. Whether it is a favorite beverage and snack, music, good lighting, or a snuggly blanket, creating a relaxing space helps you get the most out of your reading time.
- Be an active reader. Annotating books has been a big help for me when it comes to actively reading. Highlighting passages and quotes that make an impact allows the book to stay with you long after you have finished it. It also makes it easier to find those parts if you want to revisit the book. (Check out my previous guest blog post, Book Annotating 101, to see what it's all about.) I also find it helpful to keep a reading journal, which allows me to track my books and my thoughts as I go.
Remember, we all have the same 168 hours each week. Using even a small portion of that time to read, and most importantly, enjoy that reading time, is something that I believe we can all benefit from. Think of it as literary self-care. Happy reading!