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Friday, June 22, 2018

3 ways to read more during the day when you've got a bunch of stuff to do

It always feels there are never enough hours in the day! I know I have all these things I'd like to do, and I tell myself I'm going to get them done that day, but by the time I'm done with work and back home, I tend to only have enough time to make dinner for me and my man-love, shower up, and snuggle in bed for some anime. I've become such a tired old lady! Gone are the days up staying up all night to read a book--I become a truly cranky wench without my sleep!

I think back to when I was in middle school and high school, and by some freaking miracle back then I was able to read a book in almost a day or two flat. I don't even know how I did it, because I had more work back then between homework and the multiple plays I was in after school every semester. Then I realized that I was way more resourceful back then. As a teenager, I had amazing reading habits that I didn't even realize were habits--I just did them because I couldn't stand to put the books I was reading down. For example, after I finished taking tests or doing classwork, I'd immediately whip out my current book and read for the remainder of the class while everyone else finished up. That was easily a good 15-20 minutes of reading. Sometimes I'd get to school early and none of my friends would be there yet--I'd read until the bell rang for class or I saw someone I knew. Another 10 mins. Even during lunch, if my best friend was out sick that day, I'd kind of find a table off to myself and read. Boom, another 30 minutes.

All those extra minutes a day add up! In a single day, with those little moments, I could easily read an extra 50-80 pages of my book.

Based on my ingenious teenage self, here are 4 tips to read just a little more throughout the day.

1. Always have a book with you
This is kinda obvious, since you need a book with you to be able to read. I try to bring my current book along with me in my purse, or my Kindle if I happen to be reading that. But, sometimes it's not practical to take a whole entire book with you especially if you happen to be reading a big brick of a novel, and other times I don't want a purse at all so even the Kindle stays home. What I did is downloaded the Kindle app onto my phone, and I always keep a selection of books in my library so I can have something to read. Even if they're not the main book I'm reading, I know I'll finish them at some point so I figure it's just one more book I can check off as read.

2. Read during your commute!
This is a BIGGIE! I live in NYC so I end up taking the subway everywhere. Even if I only take it to work and back, that's an aggregate hour that I would otherwise spend with my headphones in trying not to make eye contact with anyone else. So, I decided to dedicate that time entirely to reading. The moment my butt hits that subway bench, my book is out. This also works if you walk or drive a lot--you can download some audiobooks and listen to those! I know some people don't like audio books, but I figure that it's worth a try to fill in some time you have to spend driving anyway.

3. Read every day for a set amount of time before bed.
I know there will be days when you come home late and all you want is to fall into bed and knock out. There's nothing wrong with that. But, getting into the habit of putting your phone away and spending even just 5-10 minutes before bed reading will make a big difference in the long run. It's also a really nice way to calm down after a long day. Studies have shown that looking at your phone before bed negatively affects your sleep, so this is a good way to slow down your brain and still get some good reading time in.

There you have it, just some tips and tricks to get in extra pages here and there. I guarantee if you start incorporating these habits into your life you'll see your reading progress accelerate!

Do you have any other tips for reading a little more during the day? Let me know!

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