Happy New Year!
It’s 2023 and I am sure most of us entered the new year as usual with lofty goals and plans.
I am sure a number of us have reading goals, or even general statements about reading more this year. If this is you, then continue reading as I am writing this post with you in mind. Here are some tips that have helped me crush my reading goals.
- Set a daily/weekly/monthly reading goal.
You know that thing they say about making SMART goals. You should do that with your reading commitment too. I have always been a reader but then I went through a dry spell where I maybe read one book in a year. I blamed it all on the stress of schooling and working at the same time. It was not until I set a reading goal that I was able to do away with excuses and fulfil my new year resolution of reading more. My goal was to read at least one book in one month. So you see you don’t have to start with a huge goal. It could be a couple of pages a day or a couple of chapters a week. Just set that goal. You can even take it a step further by making that goal public, or telling some close friends can keep you accountable.
2. Join a book club.
James Clear in Atomic Habits ( one book I highly suggest you should read) recommends “joining a group where your desired behavior is the normal behavior” as one of the ways to build and stick to a habit. That’s the advantage book clubs offer. Interacting with people with similar mindsets will further motivate you to meet your goal. There is also the added advantage of not having to find a book to read every time, the book club does that for you. So, look for a book club that shares similar values with you and join. And if you can’t find one, start one!
PS: If you are a lady looking for a book-club to join, consider joining Ladies Arise . Click this LINK to learn more.
3. Audio books!!
Time is always a great excuse for not meeting your reading goals. And that’s where audio books come in. Audio books are a great way to fit reading in to many of your day to day tasks. You can read a book during your commute to school/work. You can multitask with audio books while doing your chores i.e laundry, cleaning, washing the dishes, working out etc. I personally love listening to memoirs and biographies on audiobooks, especially when they are read by the authors. A lot of self help books and books that you might find typically boring are also examples of books that will make good listens. So try audiobooks out and it will amaze you how many books you are able to finish, and how easy it is to incorporate reading into your everyday life and routine.
4. Read books you are interested in.
Especially to start, try to choose books that will keep your attention. Look into genres you like. And it is okay to DNF as they say in book terms i.e it is okay if you don’t finish a book. Don’t feel compelled to finish a book you don’t like. Make a “To-Read” list with all the books you have heard about, or books you would love to read. Follow authors you like. Look at booktok and bookstagram for reading suggestions. Our book of the month feature on this website also has great reading suggestions. I for one know that the excuse I sometimes give for not reading is that I haven’t found the right book to read. A “to-read” list eliminates that excuse. As you start to enjoy reading, feel free to venture into new genres, cause you never know what you will like until you try.
5. It is okay to read multiple books at once.
This is one of the ways I am able to meet my reading goals and increase the number of books I read. I usually have one or 2 audio books I am reading; usually memoirs, self-help or non fiction books. Then I have a paper book I take to work with me to read during down-times; usually fiction. So on any given day, I am usually reading at least 2 books. And while it might take longer to finish, I know I am utilizing the most of my free time.
6. Libraries are gems
Reading does not have to be an expensive hobby. Most cities have a public library and they are readers’ best kept secret, lol. They usually have a huge catalogue of books you can borrow to read for free! Some public libraries even have apps where you can read e-books and audio books for free too. So take a trip to your public library and find out the resources they offer. You just might be surprised.
Finally, while reading might be a personality trait, I also believe it is an habit that can be cultivated. Reading has several benefits, and if it is something you crave, then be intentional about cultivating the habit.
So there you have it. Tips to help you crush your new year, more reading resolution.
Let me know in the comment section what tips or tricks have worked for you in the past.
Thanks for reading.