“So please, oh please, we beg, we pray, go throw your TV set away, and in its place you can install a lovely bookshelf on the wall.” – Roald Dahl
‘Reading more’ is one of the top new year resolutions that people set for themselves. Reading is a greatly satisfying habit. Books teach you about things which are beyond your daily horizons. They take you to far-off places which you can only dream of. They introduce you to so many vivid characters and you feel as if you really know them.
If you want to cultivate a daily reading habit then there are a number of ways which can help you to get started. Reading is highly enjoyable when you are reading a good book. But it may seem like a chore if you are reading a lousy book. If you are forcing yourself to read for several days in a row because the book isn’t a good one or you are finding it too difficult then you should consider abandoning the book and picking up an interesting one instead.
Here are 15 tips to cultivate a daily reading habit:
1. Set times
You should set aside some time every day when you will read at least for half an hour. If half an hour seems like too much then read for 10-15 minutes at different intervals during the day. Consider this time as a scheduled appointment. This is the time when you will read no matter what. For example, make it a habit to read while sipping your morning tea or commuting in a cab or before going to bed.
2. Always carry a book
Always take a book along whenever you step out of house. I generally always carry a book or my kindle in my handbag. I read during the lunch hour at work. If there’s a time when I have to wait for an appointment, I take out the book and read. A great way to pass time!
3. Make a list
Make a wishlist of all the books that you want to read. You can keep the list in your journal, in a notebook, on your goodreads page or wherever you want to. Add to the list whenever you get a recommendation for a good book. Start with reading one book from your list and cross out the ones you gradually read.
4. Find a quiet place
Find a quiet corner in your house and curl up with a good book for some uninterrupted reading. There should be no television or computer nearby and also no noisy family members. It’s a good idea to create a cozy corner in your house which is free from distractions.
5. Reduce screen time
If you really want to read more, then cut back on TV, smartphone and social media. Less TV/Internet means more reading time. This could actually create hours of reading time in a week.
6. Read to your kid
If you have children, then you must read to them every night. Reading to your kids is the best way to ensure that they’ll be readers when they grow up. Find some great children’s books and read to them.You are not only encouraging a love for books in your children but also developing a reading habit in yourself. This is a great way to spend some quality time with your kids.
7. Keep a log
Similar to the wishlist, maintain a book log which should have the title and author of the books you read and also the dates you start and finish them. Goodreads is a great way to maintain a book log or else you can maintain it in your journal.
8. Go to used book shops
Reading can prove to be an expensive hobby. An alternative could be to buy used books. You can also buy used books through online portals like amazon or bookchor. This way even if you read a lot, books will not be a major expense.
9. Have a library day
Getting a library member ship will ensure a steady supply of books at affordable rates. Also you get to read in a quiet place among fellow book lovers.
10. Read fun and compelling books
Read books of the genre that interests you. Once you have cultivated reading habit, you can move on to the more difficult stuff. But for now, read the bestsellers. Nora Roberts, Nicholas Sparks, Dan Brown, Khaled Hosseini, Sidney Sheldon, Jeffrey Archer…all these popular authors are great storytellers
11. Make it pleasurable
Treat your reading time as your leisure activity. Have tea or coffee or any of your favorite drinks while reading. Make your comfortable with good cushions and blanket. You can also go outdoors (in the neighbourhood park) for reading.
12. Blog it
Putting it up on your blog makes you accountable and more serious about the reading habit. I post regular reviews of the books that I read on my blog. If you don’t have a blog then you can create one.
13. Set a high goal
Set a goal for yourself and then start reading to accomplish it. But make sure that you enjoy reading because if you are just running after the goal then it will defeat the purpose. My goal for this year is 40 books and I have read 31 so far.
14. Have a reading hour or reading day
Have a reading hour every day or perhaps a reading day on Sunday when you read for practically the whole day. It’s super fun. The key here is to switch off distractions and devote yourself to reading.
15. Get a Reading Partner or Book Club
Get a reading partner who enjoys reading or join a book club. Book club gatherings give you an opportunity to discuss books and everything else related to books and reading.
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