Reading More Productively | Getting Into the Habit
If you’re anything like me right now you’re shaking your head thinking, how did I not finish as many books as I had liked to this year? Or the classic “why am I not reaching my Goodreads goal?” Well, my friend, that means you have to read a lot smarter and no, I don’t mean more “intelligent books.” Having trouble getting back into reading can be a result of many things and I’ve noticed quite a few of these from my own reading habits.
LACK OF INTEREST
You might be finding yourself not having any inspiration to sitting down and having yourself a good old reading sesh. This is usually because you’re probably a mood reader and not only that, you’re bored af with your TBR list. You need to cut off and forget those books that aren’t serving you any purpose and are basically TBR place holders. If you need some more ideas on how to sort yours read one of my past posts on how to sort your TBR into a more manageable list.
FOLLOW BOOK BLOGGERS, BOOKTUBERS, AND BOOKSTAGRAMMERS
Sometimes all it takes is to follow someone who has similar tastes in books as you. Don’t waste your time following someone if you have nothing in common with your reading. It makes more sense to follow someone who digests the same genres and authors that you adore. Plus, you find another book bestie to read along with! :)
YOUR FOCUS NEEDS MORE FOCUS
Not gonna lie, this is probably my number one problem and I’m probably speaking on behalf of like 90% of other readers when I say that I have issues getting off the internet. Specifically as readers we struggle with this the most because we use the online world to find more books to discover and we are starving for knowledge or to immerse ourselves in another person’s world. This is completely okay, but taking all your spare time to check the latest tweets on Twitter? Eh, not so okay for your TBR pile. Unplug from the data and wifi so you can truly dive into that book that’s been sitting on your bedside table for over the past week.
JOIN IN ON #READATHONS
Sometimes knowing that you’ve got a community at the touch of your fingertips that’s reading at the same time as you makes the simple act of reading more fun! If you’re at a loss of which to follow go read one of my recent posts to discover some new readathons!
GRAB A READING BUDDY
So maybe you’re not the large crowd reading type? That’s okay too because there’s always the option of finding someone IRL or online to buddy read with who has similar reading tastes. A lot of times all it takes is a quick tweet/hashtag #buddyread/post/DM to ask others out there who’d want to join you.
START A BOOK CLUB OR JOIN ONE
So what if you’re an inbetweener? That’s cool, you can always create your own book club or find one that’s already established. Just search #bookclub on any of the social apps you use to find one to your liking. When in doubt look into some book clubs for your favorite genres in Facebook groups. If you need any tips on how to start a book club read another post from this #Bookmas series.
TAKE PART IN THE #READINGAFTER10 CHALLENGE
It’s funny, I’ve been telling myself to do this for like the past year. No joke. 😂 BookTuber, Ariel Bissett, started this challenge awhile back hoping to contribute more of her time reading versus wasting time elsewhere. You can search into the challenge and see what others have been up to by looking up the hashtag on Instagram. Ariel at one point explains that she fell off the bandwagon not long after, probably due to being so busy with all her creative bookish YouTube content that she’s always up to! Anyways, just because she may not be participating at this moment doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t give it a go! Let’s bring back this movement! Honestly, there’s a few awesome benefits to this. 1) Less time on social media = less exposure to blue light on your phones. This means that you have an easier time falling asleep at night. 2) More reading time. 3) Finally catching up on the top books of your TBR pile.
SUBSCRIBE TO A BOOK BOX
When you’re getting a newly released book every month you’re more inclined to read it if there’s others getting it too. Some book boxes even include fun activities and communities that you can be a part of. So if you’re feeling out of place with no close friends that read this would be a great option for you! I’ve conveniently made a list of 18 book boxes the other day that goes into detail of what they include as well as the current prices (as of November 2018).
USE SOME APPS AND PHONE SETTINGS TO DISTRACT YOU FROM ACTUALLY BEING “ONLINE”
If you have a love for greenery and artificial woods then the Forest app is for you! This is seriously one of the most adorable productivity apps you can download on your phone or use via your browser (if you have easy access to a computer). Every day you start off with a clean slate of grass and the goal is to grow your forest as much as you can in a day. It’s fun because over time you rack up coins to buy different kinds of trees to grow! You can also sync your account from mobile to desktop if you have other stuff you want to work on like I do with book blogging! Another great perk is the ability to block yourself from certain apps and websites which is helpful against your online weaknesses.
This is an app a lot of people use when they need to get some sort of task finished, but it can easily be used as a timer for reading! Simple set the timer for 25 minutes and keep reading! If the timer goes off, feel free to either keep reading or move onto something else that needs to be done in your daily tasks. This is such a short time frame that it will be simple for you to dedicate only 25 minutes a day to reading or more sessions if you’d prefer.
For those of you that like to be on a desktop/laptop throughout the day this is another great service similar to Forest where you can block specific websites from being used while being in focus mode for specific amounts of time. This one is available as a Google chrome extension.
Almost the same name as the previous one I’ve mentioned as well as similar features, but they take it a step forward by letting you choose a maximum amount of time to spend on particular sites/apps as well as which days of the week. This is an app offered for Android. I have mainly android based devices so if you’re an iOS user your best bet is to search for similar apps/extensions as the ones I’ve mentioned above. Some may or may not be offered via both iOS and Android.
If you’re a person that needs some kind of noise in the background, but isn’t distracting (like sound lyrics) you should look into downloading the Rain Sounds app. They have a variety of different tracks of rain in different atmospheres and environments and you can edit the specific sounds you’re hearing as well..
Though, not QUITE as fun as using the Forest app you can always set your phone to airplane mode (or silent for those of you with better willpower). It’s the easiest and quickest way to get you sucked into a book.
I hope that I helped you figure out some new ways to get back into the habit of reading. I know it can be hard with the online world that we have, but your TBR pile misses you! Pay attention to it! Give it some love! :)
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