welcome to autumn: school has started, and the end is most definitely not in sight. you’re busy. you’re tired. you want to read, but you don’t have time. or, at least, you think you don’t have time…!
hello! i’m back today with a few tips i thought might be useful for keeping up with reading during the school year/busy times. personally, i know i make excuses for myself when i don’t read (often during the school year); i don’t have enough time, or i could be doing something more “productive.” WELL, i’m here today to debunk the myth that you don’t have enough time in your day to read!
01. reading during small vacancies in your schedule
this might be something you’ve heard before, but if you are trying to read more, be ultra aware of the 10-15 minute pockets throughout your day that you can use to get ahead on reading. or you could try to get other random tasks (like homework, menial tasks, etc) done so that you have more time later in your day. although these small windows of time can seem insignificant, they definitely add up over the course of a day, week, or a month.
02. making time in your schedule
similarly to my first point, you can look at reading as another item on your to-do list that needs to get done. i know this might make reading feel like a drag for some (“ugh, just another thing to do!”), but i really think it’s worth a try. once you look at reading as a built-in part of the day, you shift the other events in your schedule to make room for it. voila! a designated time to read!
03. reading on your phone
you know all those times you go on your phone during the day? this is another time when it all adds up at the end of a day, week, or month! i know i don’t always have a book with me at all times, but most likely, i have my phone and a queue of books waiting on the Libby app for me (books i placed holds on six months ago *sigh*).
if you’ve ever thought, “hey, i wish i could multitask while reading!” audiobooks are most definitely worth a try! i started listening to audiobooks pretty substantially in june of this year, and i haven’t looked back. basically, i’ll put on an audiobook while i’m getting ready in the morning, doing laundry, sending emails, etc. it gives me something interesting to fixate on while doing otherwise mundane tasks. that way, it’s like getting two tasks done for the price of one 😉
plus, i find that it can be great to listen to audiobooks on commutes or during times i would otherwise not be able to read a physical book.
if you’re an audiobook skeptic, believe me, i was too. i had some difficulty at first staying focused + finding narrators i actually enjoyed listening to. what helped me was listening to books i already knew i loved (for example, Six of Crow and Crooked Kingdom) just to get a feel for what audiobooks were like. from there, i started listening to really long/difficult books i wasn’t sure that i would be able to get through in the physical form. xan has a great post on audiobooks you should definitely check out!
05. reading before bedtime.
reading is obviously a great way to end your day, whether in physical or audiobook form. i think this is my most used method for increasing my reading during the school year! i try to finish homework around 10 pm, get ready for bed, and set aside 30-45 minutes of time to read/listen to a book. recently, i’ve gotten into a nasty habit of looking at my phone before bed (and then getting distracted by my phone for an extra 30 minutes…), and i know i can easily switch that time out for reading! right there alone is an extra 30 minutes i can spend listening to an audiobook or curling up with a paperback.
sometimes, while listening to an audiobook before bed, i’ll just turn off the lights, set a sleep timer on my audiobook app, and listen until i fall asleep. wham bam. reading + bedtime mushed into one.