3 Ways to Read More–Even When You’re “Too Busy”

This article first appeared on FutureFemaleLeaders.com

Every time I tell someone what I do for a living (I’m a librarian) or how many books I read on average (hundreds a year…) they always tell me, “Oh, I want to read more, but I don’t have the time.” Newsflash: we all have 168 hours in the week. No one is afforded more time than anyone else, but it’s all about how we use our time. Sure, parents of six might have less “free time” than a single 23-year-old, but you can always find time to read. No one is busy all 168 hours a week. If you think you don’t have the time to read, I encourage you to try these three tips and see if that perspective changes.

Try audio-books

Some people are really persnickety about audio-books, but I’m here to tell you they are life changing. And, now they’re usually available digitally and immediately, no more paying $50 for a pack of CDs. Audio-books are the perfect way to read when you can’t just sit down and stare at the page. I walk/metro to work, and audio-books are a huge savior. I get in over an hour of reading a day during this time alone. Plus, I like to listen to audio-books while I clean or cook. If you like podcasts, it’s an easy transition. If you’re not an aural learner, try slowly easing your way into audio-books by listening to old favorites or shorter reads.

Utilize the Kindle cloud reader

No one thinks they have time to read at work, including me, a literal librarian, but you’d be surprised when the opportunity presents itself. Your lunch break, as you wait for a conference call to start, as you stare aimlessly at the computer when no one is around, etc. If you have time to surf Facebook during the work day, you have time to read, and no one has to be any wiser. The Kindle Cloud Reader through your Amazon account allows you to read on your computer easy-peasy.  You can read Amazon Kindle books you already own or download for free through local library services, like Overdrive/Libby. You won’t look “too busy” when you’re just reading on your computer. Yes, it will sync with the Kindle book on other devices. This is how I get reading done when I’m on desk duty and we’re slow. Plus, it’s easy to walk away when work needs to be done without losing your place.

Read for 15 minutes before bed

If you think you don’t have time to read but scroll through Instagram for an hour before bed, I’ve got news for you. The blue light isn’t doing you any favors, and you’re not getting any reading done. Instead, choose a good book instead of Instagram. You’ll find yourself getting in more reading time and likely falling asleep quicker. A win-win all around.


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