I love the feel of a book in my hands and the scent my nose picks up while I turn the pages. Reading clears my mind and I get hooked in the action as if I’m the main character. Sometimes, I even find myself hurrying with the kitchen dishes just so I can quickly get back to a great page-turner.
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But often, with all the daily activities, housekeeping, working, and taking care of a child, it’s hard to carve out the time to read. But I try to find it, because it’s my way to unwind after a fast-paced and noisy day.
This year, I’ve challenged myself to read 15 books, and along the way, I’ve discovered some tips that I want to share so you can turn more pages too.
1. Set a reading goal
One way to motivate yourself is with a goal. Decide on a number of books you want to read in a certain period of time. This year, I set the goal of reading one book a month. You can also set yourself a reading goal of 20-30 pages a day.
On my books-to-read list, I have some great titles, like “Fangirl” by Rainbow Rowell, “Ten Tiny Breaths” by K.A. Tucker, “Shopaholic to The Rescue” by Sophie Kinsella, and “The Fault in Our Stars” by John Green.
To help you meet your goal, schedule time to read. I started my reading challenge by dedicating 30 minutes a day just to sitting down with a book. If you have a packed schedule, a good way to find reading time is by swapping it with an existing habit. Instead of swiping through Facebook during breakfast, read your favorite book. Or make the most of your commute by reading on your daily bus or train ride.
2. Find a comfortable reading space
Create your perfect reading spot and don’t be afraid to rearrange your furniture.
I’ve created a comfortable place on the corner of my sofa with some soft pillows for my reading space. The pillows and the colors that surround me make me feel safe and warm. I love curling up in that spot with a book in hand.
Go ahead and have some coffee, tea, or even a little treat while you read. Or venture outside, go in the park and read on a bench. The sound of the birds will relax you.
3. Choose the book format you like
If you travel a lot and you want to read on-the-go, an ebook reader is a good choice. Bonus: It saves space on your bookshelves, and ebooks are a bit less expensive and many public libraries let you borrow them for free.
Another format to consider is the audiobook. For some, listening to audiobooks is better than reading. I love listening to audiobooks while I drive or when I’m just walking.
Although I own an ebook reader, I still like reading paper books. The physical experience of holding a book and making a trip to the library are part of what makes reading special to me.
4. Join a book club
A book club is a great way to hold you accountable with your reading goal. Check out the bulletin board at your local library, bookstore, or coffee shop for one. Or ask friends and family for a reference.
If you don’t have the time to meet once a month in person, join an online book club on Goodreads, such as RW Bookclub and Oprah’s Book Club. Just search for the perfect fit for you, sign up, and start interacting with fellow book lovers.