TAKE the Time for Books

There is no 'making time' for what's important. You can't create more time than you have. But you can TAKE the time for those things that are most meaningful to you. If reading is something you've been talking about doing more of for years, then why not take the time now? If you have a stack (or a list) of books to read, why not read them?  Stop saying you don't have the time and start taking the time.

 

Here are tools and strategies to move beyond someday:

 

Track the books you read each year

 

Tracking helps you see what you've accomplished and encourages you to read more. When I joined the Goodreads 2014 Reading Challenge, I wanted to read 24 books. I thought two a month was doable. I ended up only reading 15, but that was 13 more than I would have. The next year I read more, and the next even more. Seeing the list of books grow, encourages me to add another to the list. It's a game to see the progress bar fill in.

How will you track?

 

Check out Book Clubs

 

Whether or not you discuss the book with others, book clubs are a great resource for new books you hadn't heard of before. You'll also get encouragement to finish this one because the next choice is coming soon.

 

Check out the longest running book club in the United States — Chautauqua Literary and Scientific Circle (founded in 1878) and their book list.

 

I'm enjoying expanding my reading list with the PBS NewsHour and New York Times book club, Now Read This.

 

Where do you learn about your next book?

 

Use All Forms

 

 

Go Mobile. Have something to read on your smartphone at all times. While you're waiting for the doctor, the bus, or your kids (spouse, friend, etc.) you can get a few more 'pages' in. Make sure that when you've finished one book, you immediately set up the next book to read. Check out your library to see what eBooks are available to you.

 

Reading on your tablet or smartphone may also help if the regular print in paperbacks is too small. You can change the font to whatever size works for you. 

 

Go Audio. They are fabulous if you have a long drive or commute to work, or just traveling. Listening to a story while you're washing windows, painting, or pulling weeds makes chores more enjoyable. Check out your library. They probably have books on CD you can pop in your CD player as well as electronic Audiobooks you can checkout on your smartphone.

 

Go Print. The old standby. Whether you only read print books or not, check out your library. Rather than buy another book to put on your stack to read, put it on your list and check it out when you're ready to take the time to read it.

 

Which form will you try?

 

Identify and Use Pockets of Time

 

Waiting for the dentist, doctor, or massage therapist -- whip out your smartphone and read. I love having a book on my smartphone because not only can I read in the waiting room, I can read in the exam room chair while waiting another 10 minutes for the doc. I find the phone is easier to carry and put away than a book or magazine, so I read more often.

 

What are your pockets of time for reading?

 

Delegate

 

Stop doing everything yourself. Delegate some daily chores to others who live in the house. Break up tasks into smaller chunks that others can do with you. Then set a time when all of you work on it. Once the task is accomplished, celebrate with some reading time for yourself and fun time activities for them.

 

What will you delegate so you can take that time for reading?

 

If you've been talking about reading more, take the time to do it now. If you find you still have more books in the 'to read' pile than you have time for, consider letting some go. See Are Your Books Lonely?  for help with letting books go. 

 

 

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