I recently was engaged in my favorite topic of conversation: books. My friend told me that when her children were young, she would get up at 5:00 each morning to read. I found that to be so charming. I pictured the scene: a hot mug of coffee, a cozy sweatshirt, a delicious novel. It sounded idyllic, minus the 5:00 a.m. part. I mulled over how unusual it was for someone to wake up early to do something that’s not high up on the list of things to complete in a day. She’s the only person I’ve ever heard of to do such a thing. But the more I thought about it, the less awestruck I became. I manage to find plenty of time each day to engage in my favorite pastime. In a way, I, too, set an alarm for reading; it just doesn’t go off at 5:00 a.m.
I’m not suggesting you get up at 5:00. I use this anecdote to illustrate that reading is something that deserves a dedicated window of time, just like we make time to exercise and work; just like we make time to grocery shop and tend to the garden.
Because said conversation is my favorite, I engage in it often, and I often hear people say they wish they read more. To which I will say, what’s stopping you? The answer is always time, but I think that answer is wrong. I think it’s the mindset that gets in people’s way. The desire to read more is not enough; you must first make a mindset shift. If you have time to watch television or scroll through social media, you have the time to read. Once you move it higher up on your list of things to complete in a day and start looking for time to read, the opportunities will unfold tremendously in front of you. You just have to want it.
Last year I managed to read forty-five books, and it felt almost breezy. I could’ve snuck in a few more if I wanted to. Here are some suggestions based on my experience to help you make time for reading. They’re not new — you know all of them. But if reading more is something that interests you, these will serve as good reminders.
Always carry a book with you.
Whether I am going to the dentist or running errands or meeting a friend for a drink, I always bring a book with me. Rather than pick up my phone and check email or scroll through Instagram, I reach for my book, which makes things like waiting for the…