How to Add a Little More Reading to Your Life

Life is busy. We often find ourselves winding down our day thinking of all the things we did and the things we have to do tomorrow. But how many times have you told yourself you should start reading more yet struggle to find the time? One of the best ways to start anything is to start small and gradually. Slipping a little more reading into your life is no exception.

One of the very first activities of our day (or at least usually is, if we can manage) is eating breakfast. If you’re someone who eats breakfast peacefully solitary, try spending some time reading the newspaper, or a poem, or even just a page from the book you’ve been meaning to start. Reading can also be incorporated into any other time you’re eating as well.

However, if you’re usually eating with family or eating with a significant other, you can designate reading time with them instead. Carving out reading time for your home to settle in with a book can be a great way to get others onto your ambition to read more. Try persuading your family or significant other to agree to read for 20 minutes before you start to prepare dinner or after you’ve eaten. Getting others on board will also help motivate you to stay on track and continue your reading quest.

Another time of day you could afford some reading is while you’re working out. Reading on the stationary bike or walking on the treadmill definitely requires some coordination, but can be just as easy as watching the TV mounted to the gym wall.

You can also swap the screen for a book while watching TV at home on your couch. Binge watching your favorite show is always tempting, but it’s an equally good time to read. If you just can't give up the show and you're watching something that has commercials, especially the same commercials you’ve seen five times already, you can always opt to read during them. Since sporadic bursts of reading between TV may make the flow of reading a bit challenging, it might be best to read non-fiction or short articles that can be finished in little time or easy to come back to without forgetting the context.

You can also read while you wait. If your day is busy with hurry-up and wait kinds of activities, like waiting for meetings, picking kids up from school, or waiting for your train, there is always a little time to squeeze in a page or two.

Finally, one of the most convenient times to read is right before bed. When you get in bed, you’ve made it! You have completed your day and have resigned to rest for the night. The down time before you sleep can be used to read a chapter of a book, but if you’re too tired and sleepy for a chapter, reading just a page a night can make a dent.

If you’re someone who finds it hard to stick to one book or other reading for long periods of time, keeping multiple books around can help keep the reading going, even if it’s not from the same book. Switching between books that hold your interest can help make reading less of a chore and more fun. Additionally, having a physical stack of books lying around can be motivation to pick them up more often!

Reading is an easy fix for any chance you have time to kill! The best way to read more is to have something you’d like to read handy, so if keeping a book in your bag, in the car, by the couch, by your bed, or in your office seems do-able, try it out! With the digital version of books, magazines, and newspapers, interesting reading material is never far from reach. Whether if you love the feel of a paperback in your hands or if you love the convenience of a kindle or smartphone, find the sorts of material you like to read and keep them with you!

-Brianna Cochran

Photo Credit: paologmb reading via photopin (license)

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