5 Tips to (Effectively) Conquer Your Reading List This Year

Written by: Ava Arnejo | 4 months ago

Coming up with a reading list is one of the ways to improve one’s reading habits. Creating it may seem like a tremendous task, but having one surely has its perks. It gives a clear picture of what reading goals one wants to reach such as how many books one intends to read or how much time one wants to devote to reading.

However, finishing an entire reading list is actually an even more frightening and intimidating task than coming up with one. But fret not! With the right tips and tricks, it won’t be as daunting as a task and it won’t be as difficult to finish as you might think. Here are some of the tricks I personally use:

Photo by Alexander Gray via Unsplash

1. Quit reading early.

When you’re almost halfway through a book and you’re still wondering why you’re reading it, it is important to quit reading. Instead of pushing through a book you're not enjoying or finding beneficial, put it down and start reading something else.

When you read books that you want to read, it is more difficult to put them down and even easier to finish. For example, I'm a huge Tolkien fan. I love everything high fantasy, especially those that involved lore, world-crafting, and magic. If I will read The Silmarillion, will it make me a better businessman or employee of the month? Most likely not (who knows, though?). But I adore reading and am so engrossed in it that I can't stop.

2. Make space and take space.

Reading takes time. I usually do my reading for fifteen to thirty minutes in the morning and at night, respectively with sporadic minutes during the day (during my morning coffee or my afternoon break). These in-between reading times are good, but they’re not consistent and the best way to hack through your reading list is this: being consistent in setting time to read.

It's difficult to sit down and read a book when your mind is distracted and running a mile a minute. After all, you've got deadlines to fulfill, clients to attend to, school tasks to accomplish, and dishes to clean. I try to finish these irritating duties before reading so they don't irritate me during my reading time. I've also discovered that exercising and meditation assist to relax my thoughts.

The greatest time to read is right before going to bed. Set aside fifteen to thirty minutes before going to bed to read instead of doomscrolling, catching up on TV shows, or visiting social media. You will not only read more, but you will also sleep better.


3. Always have a book in hand.

Never go anywhere without a book. I usually always read print books, as there is a strange but wonderful and unique feeling brought about by turning physical pages. Still, since I have started to live minimally and I also moved into a smaller space, I have learned to love and live with my e-books, so I'm never without anything to read.

You may now read a book on your device while traveling. While working out, you can even listen to an audiobook. In summary, employing technology allows you to read and comprehend more books throughout the year.

Photo by Maxyne Barcel


4. Change your mindset about reading.

Perhaps you don't enjoy reading, therefore finding extra time to read may be a problem for you. But in order to consume more books, one must think of reading as an act of pleasure and productivity, and that one can grow and learn from reading.

Research results from a study conducted by educators and researchers from Florida State University and Southern Methodist University show that such kind of mindset can alter how people, especially younger students, view reading.


5. Track your progress and celebrate them.

This lets you know where you stand in the process. Some applications and websites might assist you in this regard. I also have an excel spreadsheet where I keep track of all the books I've read, where I obtained them when they were released, and the author's race, gender, and page counts, among other things. I'm intense, and I enjoy keeping track of stuff. You are not required to be like me. Keeping track in some form, however, can help you stay focused throughout the year.

Celebrate if you realize you're on pace to meet your objective. Purchase a new book or a new cup. Maybe you just perform a joyful dance or tell your friend about your accomplishment. Or share what you're reading on social media. Make sure you enjoy the reading you're doing in whichever way you do it.