Have you ever been in a situation whereby you want to read more books but you do not know how? Maybe you struggle completing a single book and the idea of reading more than 60 books in a year just doesn’t seem possible. I know how it feel because I have been there. I would buy and get lots of books from my friends. However, completing them was just a whole nightmare.
I made this weakness more conscious and made deliberate steps to help me complete and read more books. The below 17 tips have been my most useful steps to reading more books in my life. Before we go any further, I created a comprehensive list of the best beginner personal development books to read that you can download down below.
You might want to read these posts ,too:
Let’s dive right in!
What can you do to read more books?
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1. Set specific goals
Setting specific reading goals will motivate you to read more. This is because, the moment you finish reading a book, the excitement of knowing that you have gotten closer to accomplishing your goal will make you want to read more books. When you get to achieve your goals, the excitement doubles and you feel great. Therefore, the more you set specific reading goals for yourself and accomplish them, the more you keep reading.
At the end of the day,you find that you have achieved more goals than you would have ever expected. So set some reading goals for yourself today.
2. Identify what hinders your reading
Sometimes you take a book to read but are unable to spend more than five minutes with it. Maybe its because you are trying to read when tired. So you end up sleeping after five minutes of opening your book.Identifying what makes you not or hinders your reading is important as it will show you what you should avoid or do more often when reading.
If you experience fatigue when reading, maybe you should work on reading when you are not tired. For instance, if reading before bed makes you fall asleep after five minutes of openings your book, try changing your reading routine to hours that you are most active like morning hours.
Below are some tips that will help you overcome reading fatigue :
- Try reading in the morning. Mornings are the best times for reading because your mind is not tired and you are active.
- Don’t read in bed. Reading in bed can be a cause of reading fatigue. This is because, your mind understands that bed is meant for sleeping not reading. That might be the reason why you feel tired when you read in bed. This is a bad habit especially if you experience insomnia. Bed should only be used for sleeping and sex.
- Use white noise to block noise. Maybe your reading is hindered by noise from traffic or your children. Using white noise to block all the noise is effective.White noise is a random signal having equal intensity at different frequencies giving it a constant power spectral density. Okay, I do not want to complicate your life by giving you hard terminologies. In simple terms, white noise is produced by combining sounds of all different frequencies together. Because it contains all frequencies, it is frequently used to mask other noises.Its like being in a noisy room and turning on the fan or television to drown out the other noise. So how is it going to make you read better? If you have trouble focusing on your book because of noise, creating a constant ambient sound could help mask activity from inside and outside your house. It should be anything that creates a consistent and soothing backdrop throughout your reading.
3.Incorporate reading in your daily routine
The more you read daily, the more books you will end up reading before the year ends. Don’t underestimate the power of 15-20 minutes of reading. I know how busy one can get during the day but that shouldn’t stop you from allocating some time off your day to read. The benefits of reading are worth making time for your books. Or, you can incorporate your reading routine into your daily routine.
There are various ways that you can create more time for reading. My favorite is to wake up a little earlier. You simply incorporate book reading into your morning routine. However, do not wake and immediately pick a book . Take time to fully wake up by doing some of these things and then pick your book, go to your reading area and get reading.
4.Carry your books wherever you go
If possible, carry the book you are reading wherever you go. This is because, you will never miss few minutes to spare during your day to read. Those small 5 or ten minutes you use to read in between breaks can help you finish reading a book in no time. So take advantage of every opportunity you have to carry your book around and read whenever you are able to.
5. Take advantage of your free time and reading
As I said in the previous point, always carry you books wherever you go. Whenever you are free, take out your book and read it. Do not underestimate the small ten or five minutes that you get to read
6. Listen to audio books when driving or running errands
Listening to audio books is a convenient way of reading books. When driving or making dinner, you can listen to the books without having to physically open them. Instead of allowing your mind to wonder aimlessly, take advantage and listen to a book.
I love audio books because it makes it easy for you to complete reading books. If you take two hours daily to drive around every week, imagine how many books you will complete reading if an average book is nine hours on audio. That means that you can listen to one book every week how amazing is that.
Every free minute that you have, take your ear piece and listen to a book. When waiting on line or jogging, listen to a book. You will be amazed at how how many books you can complete reading by listening to them.
7. Read short books
If you want to read more books , then you should avoid reading big books. There is nothing wrong with picking a 1000 page novel or book to read. However, chances are, you might take long to finish reading it. The reality of reading fatigue creeping in is real. By the time you will be completing reading that book, you might want to take an indefinite break from reading all together. Sometimes, you might be too tired to finish reading the book by itself.
The definition of short might be relative to different people. If you have been a reader for a long time, your definition of a short book might be different from a beginner. Go for what suits you and your reading level. Don’t look at the aspect of quantity and quality. The goal of this post is to help you read more books but don’t forget to get the most out of the books despite of this.
8. Take up a reading challenge
Have you read the quote that if a goal doesn’t scare you then its not big enough? It also applies to reading books. Challenges motivate us to read more and more books. The closer you get to achieving, the more confident and esteemed you feel.
- The first step to creating a book reading challenge is to identify how many books you want to read. You need to be realistic about it. You can’t expect to read 100 books in one year yet you can only find ten minutes per day to read. Identify how many hours per day that you are willing to commit to read. If you can find 10 hours per week to commit to reading, then you can finish one book every week. This means that you can challenge yourself to read 60 books in a year.
- The next step is identifying which books you want to read during the challenge. You don’t have to have it all figured out. But be sure to identify at least a quarter of the books you want to read in your challenge. This will save you so much time especially when you finish reading a book. You don’t want to finish reading a book then sit around wondering which would be your next book to read. At least have an idea of the next five books you want to read after you finish the one you are currently reading.
- The last step is to have a book reading planner to help you carry out the challenge with ease. The planner will help you schedule your reading time for your day, week and month. It will also help you list down the books you want to read and journal about what you feel about each book you have read. I know how time consuming creating a planner can be. That’s why I took my time to create a book reading printable and editable planner available in size A4, A5, US and HALF LETTER.
This book reading planner comes with:
- Reading log
- Wish list
- Reading journal
- Reading challenge
- Book review
- Favorite quotes
- Favorite authors
- Daily reading schedule
- Weekly reading schedule
- Yearly reading schedule
- Yearly reading glance
I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to start a book reading challenge.Click here to get my book reading planner.
9. Quit reading a book you don’t enjoy
If you do not enjoy reading a book, get rid of it. I know that it seems cruel, but in the long run, it will help you read more books. Reading a book that you do not enjoy will give you reading fatigue. You will slowly start hating to read which translates to every other book. Instead of putting yourself through all this, just put down that book that you do not enjoy reading.
However, I do not encourage you to do this often because you might end up putting off reading for many books which is a bad habit. The only way to avoid such problems is to do a background check on the book before deciding to buy it or read it. This will save you so much time and money. The three step process that I use to check if a book is really worth my time and money is:
- Reading the book summary. This may seem obvious but it is greatly underestimated. If the book summary doesn’t seem good for you, chances are, the book might not be great. Its a sad reality. However, ignoring the “red flags” in the summary hoping that the book turns out great may leave you disappointed.
- Checking the three star rating for the book. You do not want to go for the one star or five-star rating because the extremes are sometimes exaggerated. You might decide to buy a book based on the five star rating only to find that the book is overrated. The three star rating will show you the good and the bad of the book without being extreme. This will help you have a good idea of what the book might be like.
- Checking the background information of the author. You need to ask yourself if the author has an authority in the book that he has written. Is he qualified enough to give me advice on a certain topic? Does he or she have experience with the topic or the book was written just for the sake? These questions are important to ask yourself and the only way to get answers is to do a background check. If the author’s story relates to you then its a bonus for you to consider buying the book.
I believe that going through this process will help you buy books that you will enjoy reading. If by any chance after doing the above three things and the book still isn’t great, then its not your fault. You did your best.
10. Have books waiting in line to be read.
Once you complete reading a book, have another one waiting in line for you to read. Don’t waste your time wondering which book you need to read next. Have a list of books waiting in line for you to read.
That’s why having a wish list comes in handy. The moment you realize that you are about to finish reading a book, go back to your wish list and look at the book you would want to read next. Check the book summary, third star rating review for the book and the background info about the author. If everything seems great, then shop the book or download it.
Once you are done reading the book, take the book that you have bought and start reading it. Leave no room for procrastination. Let your reading be on momentum mode. Don’t let that little devil that tells you to procrastinate on your reading get to you. Do not leave room for that small voice to influence you.
11. Buy new books
There is a lot of excitement when you buy a new book. The cover is appealing and you just can’t wait to snuggle in your reading nook and read your book. The mere fact that you have taken your money to buy the book motivates you to want to read and complete it.
Have you ever gone to a restaurant and ordered expensive food? Would you want to leave half of the food lying on the plate yet you have paid a lot of money for it? Unless you seriously don’t know what to do with your money or its available in surplus, its painful to do that.
It applies to books too. Books are an investment that when you make, you want to get as much return from it. It’s true that books are costly. So take your time and read it. If you struggle reading many books, invest in buying more books. That alone would make you want to read them.
12.Read what you love.
This point is pretty obvious. If you love a book, you will be motivated to read it anytime, anywhere to complete it.So don’t be afraid to pick a book or genre you love and read it. The more you read books that you love, the more you will be quick to finish reading them and enabling you to read more books.
13. Find a reading buddy
Having someone to read with you motivates you to read more books even when you don’t feel like. Sometimes reading needs accountability especially when you could use your time to do other things.We live in a world that is very digitized. You can spend your time checking social media instead of reading a book. Having a reading buddy who constantly reminds you to read motivates you to read. When you meet up to discuss about the book and your buddy starts summarizing on a chapter that you are yet to read, that evening, you won’t sleep until you read ahead of your buddy.
The constant need to be ahead of your buddy will help you read more and more books. The accountability and support you get from your reading buddy keeps you reading in the long run. It becomes a habit that you can keep for years even when your buddy is no longer there to be your reading partner
14. Set a reminder for reading
Sometimes you might forget to read and there is nothing wrong with that. We are forgetful creatures by nature. However, intentionally reminding yourself to read will help you overcome the challenge of forgetting to read.There are several ways that you can set reminders for reading.
- You can tell someone to remind you at certain times during your day. That could be your co-worker, spouse, parent or child.
- You can also set alarm alerts during your day. Therefore, whenever your alarm rings, you remember to read.
- You can also set triggers around your environment to remind you to read. You can place the book that you want to read in places where you frequently spend your time so that you can clearly see it and remember to read it. Creating posters and sticking them around your house that remind you to read will also help you read. The poster might be with simple words like remember to read or more specific with the title of the book. As long as it helps you remember to read, do whatever it takes.
15. Try joining a book club
Communities are powerful. They motivate you into action, help you get back on your feet when you feel overwhelmed and remind you that you are not alone. I have experienced the power of a community with similar values and interests in my blogging and I can attest that it can be so powerful to your life.
I am not in any book club at the moment but I know that it can help you read more books. Find a book club that has a similar niche or book theme as you. Be consistent and open minded and you will learn much.There is beauty in listening to others discus different perspectives on a similar book. You get to see the book in different perspectives. Such experiences remind you that you are alive too and there is so much to live for.Try joining a book club and allow yourself to learn and read more books.
16.Don’t day dream while reading.
Have you ever read a boring book and you just can’t help but day dream about other things? If a book doesn’t bring your mind to focus on the words, plot and characters of the book then get rid of it. There is no point of setting aside your work to read only to day dream all through and read nothing at the end of the day.
If a book makes you daydream, either get rid of it or motivate yourself to focus on the book. Maybe you are the problem and not the book.When you quit daydreaming, you will have more productivity while reading which will in turn help you read more books at the end of the day.
17. Share your book review with others
Whenever you read a book, don’t hold back your opinions about the book. If the book is great, go write a compelling book review so that you can encourage others to read it. You will not only feel good about it but you will also be encouraged to read more books so that you can write more book reviews.
Even though the book wasn’t appealing to read, still write the book review anyway. Write your truth but be respectful about it. Just because a book didn’t appeal to you doesn’t mean that it wouldn’t be helpful to someone else.
Reading more books doesn’t have to be difficult. If you follow the tips above that work for you consistently, you will find yourself reading more and more books each year surprising yourself and those around you. So take up the challenge and get yourself reading.
Check out my recommendation for the top 5 beginner personal development books that you can read by downloading the guide down below.