December 2, 2019

How to develop a reading habit

Many people wish they were reading more books. How do you get to adopt this new life-changing habit of reading? Just put in practice the following advice.

How to develop a reading habit

Many people wish they were reading more books.

I am not sure why this is a common wish though. It's completely up to each person to pick up new habits or drop old ones. In theory at least.

It seems that picking up a new habit, especially one such as reading more, is quite difficult in practice.

I think this has to do with book reading traditionally associated with school and obligatory study. Many people read books only when they were told to do so, and they have bad taste.

In contrast, TV is primarily associated with entertainment, fun and having a good time.

This is so weird since both mediums are mainly used to accomplish the same thing: tell stories, fictional or nonfictional.

But why should someone read more in the first place? I will be brief.

1. It's the closest we have to time travel

What was Albert Einstein thinking when he was alive? What did the ancient Greeks say about life? You cannot travel back in time and ask them. But you can read what was preserved throughout the centuries. Reading (good) books is like having conversations with the greatest minds that have passed from this planet.

2. More things to talk about

Humans are social animals. They tend to socialize by gathering together and talk. And guess who among the tribe wins the admiration of the others. The one with the more interesting things to say. Books give you all kinds of interesting and useful things about our world (and beyond).

3. Upgrades your mind

It's been shown that reading helps with memory and concentration. It even helps with reducing stress and relaxing in general.

Ok, so how do you get to adopt this new life-changing habit of reading you might ask.

I believe that most people don't even try because it just sounds hard. Don't be one of them. Just put in practice the following advice.

1. Read every day, even a little

Read every day. It doesn't have to be a lot. Just commit to daily reading. I know you might had a hard day at work. Just read a single page if it was that hard. If it was an easy day at the office, read more. Just make progress on your currently active book. If you always make progress, you will be pleasantly surprised that as days go by, you complete books that you thought were impossible to finish.

2. Always have an active book

When you are close finishing your book, start looking for the next one. This is for avoiding having a big gap without reading at all because you are "looking for the next book". Creating a habit is difficult, but it can easily break if you just drop it for a few weeks.

3. Choose your books carefully

If you are reading with this system, the chances are you will be reading quite slow. Therefore, when selecting which book to read next, take your time and consider whether you want to read the book because it interests you or you just saw a few good ratings.

4. Read at the same time every day

Do not read when "you feel like it". Set a schedule in advance for reading and stick to it. You can watch Netflix before or after your reading time. But it's important for a habit to stick to do it consistently over time, and if possible, at the same time. Quite common is to schedule the reading time just before you go to bed, or as soon as you wake up.

Hopefully, I convinced you that developing a reading habit is worth having. Now it's up to you to make this a reality. No one else can.

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