Have you ever reasoned with yourself that you don’t read as much as you wished to because you just simply don’t have the time?
Are you saying that bookworms have more time than you, then? Fellow bookworms can assure you that they do not have one second more in a day than what you already have.
Not having time to read is a lousy excuse for not reading, because time is what you make of it. If you don’t prioritise reading in your life, then you’ll find no time for it.
You may argue that reading the papers every day should certainly be enough to be counted as reading. Personally, reading books can never be replaced by reading the papers because they’re just totally different genres. What you get out of reading books is nothing like what you get out of reading newspapers. For starters, you don’t read every single article in the papers. Neither do you do much critical thinking about an issue, because the facts are presented to you point blank. Reading books exercises your mind’s eye to push the borders of your imagination, to imagine the unimaginable. Reading books also helps you to discern what’s written in between the lines, instead of being spoonfed all the facts. Reading books makes you really appreciate the genuine craft of a writer, who can shape the way you view the world without covert political agendas.
So, how do you start cultivating a reading habit?
It takes you too long to finish a book
Solution: Look for a shorter book to read. Even though you rather read that tome of a book by J. R. R. Tolkien, let’s be realistic – you’d quit it before you even finish reading the first chapter of the first book in Lord of the Rings. A shorter book makes reading more bearable and not another chore you’ve added to your list in between going to the gym and cleaning the bathroom.
Some Short Books to Start With:
1. The Little Prince – Antoine de Saint Exupéry (children fable)
2. Animal Farm – George Orwell (adult fable)
3. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl (children)
4. More Tales of the Unexpected – Roald Dahl (short stories)
5. The Music of Dolphins – Karen Hesse (children)
You like to read in one long sitting, but you don’t have that time; just many 10-minute breaks
Solution: Change your mindset. If you really want to read and you don’t have the luxury of sitting on the couch for an hour, then read in 10-minute bursts.
Situations Where You Can Sneak in a Read:
1. While waiting in a queue
2. Waiting to pick somebody up
3. In the toilet
4. On the bed before sleep
5. Waiting for the computer to load
6. While exercising on the gym bike / treadmill
7. Stuck in a traffic jam – a real bad one, that is
8. In between tv shows and advertisements
You don’t like to read, and don’t particularly want to set a time for it
Solution: Even if you’re not a bookworm person, there is always a book that you can like. Start with children’s fiction because it’s fun and simple. If you don’t fancy it, get a bookworm friend to recommend something to you with your situation and preference in mind. Don’t pressure yourself to complete the book as fast as possible, but at the same time don’t keep putting off reading.
If you find yourself having more excuses not to read, there is nothing in the world that can convince you to read at this moment in time then. It’s obviously not something you enjoy, and you shouldn’t force yourself to just because people are recommending the benefits of reading. You may not like reading now, but you could in the future, provided you aren’t too scarred by the experience of pushy bookworms. 😉 It would be nice, though, if you give it a try at least once each time you are encouraged to read, just to make sure if this is an activity you’re just naturally averse to, or if the pleasure of reading is something you’ve never discovered, until now.