It’s almost that time when many of us have some time off of work. This time of the year can leave you feeling stressed – about the holidays, of course, but also as you reflect on what you wanted to accomplish this year and maybe didn’t. One habit that’s always on my New Year’s list that I usually fall out of by the end of the Summer is reading. Reading, for me, is so much easier to do in the Summer since it’s an enjoyable way to unplug when I’m outside. Reading can also be a great stress reliever! When transiting into the Fall and Winter I used these six tips to get me back into reading and they worked! I can’t wait to carry them into 2023, as well. Here are the six ways you can get back into and stick to reading in the New Year:
- Incorporate reading into your everyday: If you’ve not been reading for a while, look into different ways you can read that would not only interest you but also fit into your existing routine. One way I’ve found this to be easier is listening to audiobooks. It’s an easier transition into reading since it’s as simple as listening to music or a podcast. It’s something we can just press play on while we complete tasks like dishes and laundry. If audio is not your thing, start by downloading an ebook on your phone. Since we always have our phones on us, we can swap out scrolling for reading!
- Read a book that everyone is talking about: Are you on BookTok or keep seeing social media posts about specific books? Get into the conversation and give one of those books a try. I usually start reading books that I see on BookTok first since I already have some idea of what the book is about and if it will be worth my time. If I know going into it I could not only really enjoy the story but also get to discuss it with others then it helps me prioritize it. Plus, people will usually recommend other books based on popular ones which helps keep your reading list long.
- Find a specific time to read: I remember as far back as elementary school being told to read at least 30 minutes a day. Of course, as we get older and have more responsibilities sometimes even 30 minutes seems impossible. What has helped me is scheduling my time to read right before bed. Instead of mindlessly scrolling on my phone (and having my sleep affected by the blue light!) I use that time to dive into a book. Even if it ends up being ten minutes, I get more pleasure out of reading than I do watching videos on my phone.
- Track your progress: I like to write down each book I read during the year because it can be easy to forget what I’ve read later on. Plus, it’s a great visual to see all the time you spent reading this year. You can also use apps like GoodReads which does the tracking for you and also recommends other books based on your past reads and genre interests!
- Join a book community: It’s fascinating to see how differently we all view the same things. If you want to keep it formal and like to engage in some conversation around your books, join or start a book club with your friends. I’ve taken a more informal approach and actually started following accounts on Instagram that read similar books I liked and read the comments of people reading the same book. This kept me excited to keep reading and I was interested to see if I had the same opinions. Joining a book community is also another way to keep you accountable!
- Give yourself easy access to books: There are so many great tools around us to find the book we want rather than going to a bookstore or ordering one online. The Libby App allows you to borrow ebooks for free with your library card. There are hundreds of books available to your right at your fingertips! To keep the momentum going, a subscription service like Book of the Month sends you books every month based on their best reviewed reads. Do you have books you have been trying to get rid of? Another option is going to your nearest Little Free Library – you know, the cute little cabinet just bigger than a mailbox where you can take a book and leave a book. Find one near your location here! If you want to go old school and like having a physical book, take a weekend afternoon to go to your local library and wander through the stacks.
I hope this helps! What is on your reading list for 2023? What has helped you get into reading?