Reading has always been a joyful action for me. When I was a kid, I used to love reading comic books, especially the ones from the ‘60s and ‘70s. It was a great way for me to bond with my father and talk about the stories. Likewise, my family used to do reading times in the living room where we just sit and read books together. It is one of those peaceful moments that I like about my childhood.
Reading 52 books a year was hard because of this. When I hit the 40 mark, I was not actually enjoying what I did. It had been a task that I was trying to finish. So, my biggest lesson from reading 52 books a year was: Sometimes quantity drawback the quality.
Once it becomes a labour or feels tedious, I think it does not benefit you as much. You can take a break and not read for weeks. The important part is making reading a habit. Here are the ways you can read more in the business of daily life and my visual list of the books I read this year.
- Six amazing books for meditation and relaxation
- 5 Enlightening Books to Read this New Year
- 15 Engrossing Books That Are Better Than Most Tv Shows
Keep A Track Of What Books You’ve Read
Up until going to high school, I never kept a track of what I read, but this small change actually helped me so much with reading more. Now I know why, after listening to Simon Sinek’s talk “Why Leaders Eat Last”.
Dopamine is a chemical our body naturally produces and it serves as a messenger between nerve cells. It has a role in how we feel pleasure. It is also known as the feel-good neurotransmitter because it is released when we eat a food that we craved or cross out a task from our to-do list. It makes us so-called “achievement machines” and it plays a big role in our success in doing things.
The crucial part is this. Since humans are visual animals, we have to “see” our goals to make the dopamine system work. Therefore, we have to write our goals, visualize them in our heads, or put their pictures in places we can see regularly. We can use metrics too. For instance, sentences such as “ I want to read 24 books a year, which means I need to read two books a month” differs greatly from “I want to read more”.
Make Reading Books A Habit By Starting Out Small
Pick a time in the day that you think you’ll enjoy reading. For me, it is early in the mornings while drinking green tea. You don’t have to allocate lots of time for reading. Reading even 15-20 pages makes a difference since you will be reading daily. If you read 10 pages in the morning and 10 at night, after 2 weeks you will probably finish the book. This will result in reading 24 books a year.
This notion of changing your habit marginally is actually a really popular rule called 1%. It is about being a better version of yourself one percent each day. By this continuous but very small improvement, at the end of the year, you will be 37 times better than the old you. You can apply this to every aspect of your life.
Evaluate The Wasted Time
Traveling in public transportation, waiting for an appointment, or waiting to sleep… There are many occasions you can integrate reading a book. Audiobooks are a great choice as well if you like doing things that require active motion.
Spice It Up Once In A While
Although reading the genres you like can initiate a reading habit, after reading similar types of books you might feel bored. The best way to obstruct dullness is to switch from fiction to nonfiction. You can give a chance to a genre you might have never considered reading, yet really love it after. Moreover, it improves memory, vocabulary, and creativity.
What I Learned From Reading 52 Books A Year
- There is so much we don’t know and the world is fascinating.
- Reading enhances the way you propose your ideas.
- It improves the strength of your arguments because you start to quote from them.
- Quality over quantity.
- It is okay to dislike a book and stop reading it.
- Taking notes and summarizing information is necessary when you read many books.