How to read more books

books

…these are my bed table books of the past months…

I love reading, it sounds very non-special, but I do like it. I get inspiration from the books, I enjoy to see how words come together and how thoughts are evolving.  For some lucky people reading is working. Warrant Buffett, one of the biggest investors and top executives of this century estimates that 80 percent of his working hours are spent reading or thinking. I think – lucky him!  I want his job… since I do not have his job now, I read in my free time.

This is what works for me to keep reading on top of my agenda:

  • Set the reading targets and monitor how you are doing. After Nikita was born and I went back to work I had literally no time to read and I was very concerned that I am not reading enough. Last year I set a target to read a book a month. I finished the year with 20 (not 12!). This year, my target is 26 – a book in two weeks. I take pictures of ones I read, I am very behind this year’s target J but having a target helps.
  • Carry a book with you (buy smaller size books and carry them with you). It is amazing how fast a book can progress if I read 20 min on the bus every day. Kindle or IPAD would work as well.
  • Read before going to bed. This is my time to clear the mind and reading fiction book is best. If I am reading a book that makes me smile it also helps get to sleep with positive thoughts.
  • Teach others in the family to love reading. Every day before going to bed we read books, 1 book for Sasha, 1 for Nikita. They learn to like to read and there are times when we all can have 10-15 minutes of family reading time on the weekend when everyone read/looks at what he likes.
  • If you do not like a book, throw it away. This was the most difficult habit to learn. From childhood I was taught that books should be read to the end. And with some I really struggled to get to the end. I learned to stop and treasure my time. I give a book 50-100 pages depending on original expectations to prove it is worth my time.. if not – I put it into recycle paper. Major progress making reading even more enjoyable!

 

Other advice I found on the web that I disagree with.

Reactive vs proactive reading.. There is this that we became too reactive in reading clicking on what pops up on the screen or what other people are referring to.  And we should think what we want to read before going online. I actually like when people that I know are recommending what to read. I can save my time for searching as I know whose advice to follow.

Start the day with reading 20 pages – not realistic for me at least in the next 10 years. It is an activity with very abstract purpose (why 20 and not 15 + 5 min sleep,  why not skip today). It is also a difficult one to start at 5:30 or 6am when the eyes just won’t open.

Read only 1 book at a time. This does not work for me. I typically have 3 books on hand that are in progress. 1 easy fiction book to read when tired and when want to relax, 1 book on management/self development and 1 other like about art or children education…. I mingle between them depending on the mood. Wherever I tried reading only 1 I got stuck and could not finish the heavier ones…

Think what works for you and build your reading routines to learn, get inspired and enjoy the book time!

Polina

 

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