Figuring out how to get more books read is every reader’s dilemma. There are never enough hours in the day and far too many things that need done, demanding our attention. Here’s how I’m getting more books into my reading life…
When I was a little girl, I was a voracious reader. As in: I was the kid going to the library every couple days and bringing home giant stacks of books that made my backpack nearly burst at the seams. I always had a book in hand and my Mom would have to make me go outside. In which case I would just take my book with me and read outside.
Of course, I did other kid things, too, but more often than not, I had my nose in a book. Books came alive and took me places I’d never been. Gave me experiences I’d not yet lived out in my own life.
Then I hit high school, then college, then marriage and kids…and somehow, along the way, I found myself rarely reading “for fun”. Sure, I was reading informative articles, self improvement books, how to be a better mom books (you know the ones) – but was no longer taking time to read fiction, deeming it “overly indulgent”; on the list of things I didn’t have time for.
Then, this past Fall, I was listening to a podcast (can’t remember which one, or who was speaking) and they were discussing how important fiction is. How it forms us and broadens our horizons. Opens our eyes to lives we may only know through the pages of a well told story. It was as though I felt permission, somehow, to pick up a fiction book again.
And so it began.
But how is a busy homeschooling Mom of four boys supposed to get more books into an already over-stuffed schedule?
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This post is part of a semi-weekly installment of Fast Fix Friday’s, where my girlfriends and I share something to help you make life a little simpler, a little calmer, and filled with more of what makes you happy. This week Kim is sharing her one word for the year and Lisa is sharing her
one two words for the year! 🙂 I know you’ll be encouraged and inspired by these two lovely souls.
Making time for more books
- An extra 10 minutes in the morning before everyone wakes up. Yes, even just 10 minutes makes a difference. Go ahead and give it a go. Set a timer and read – if for only a few minutes. It all adds up.
- Taking a book with me when I leave the house. (You’d be surprised how much reading can be accomplished while you’re waiting – whether in line at the post office, at the dentist or doctor’s office, in the carpool line at school, at the grocery store) Think of all the places you find yourself waiting – and you grab your phone to waste a few minutes. If you’ve got your latest read with you, instead of grabbing the phone, you can snag a few minutes in your book.
- and AUDIOBOOKS. Audiobooks are my biggest key to getting so many more books read each month!
Why audiobooks are going to be your new BFFs
You can get more books read by utilizing audiobooks – and there are a few options! (and two of these are free!)
Borrowing audiobooks on CD from the library
We’ve been doing this for many years with our kids, but the selection for adults is staggering, too. It’s absolutely free and if you’ve still got a CD player in your vehicle like we do, listening to audiobooks while you drive is a wonderful way to get more books into your reading life.
Have you heard of hoopla? It’s a free app that you download onto your phone, then connect it with your library card and local library. Then voila! You’ve got (again – FREE) access to thousands of audiobooks! (you can borrow anything they have on there – they offer more than just audiobooks, but that’s mainly what I use my account for). If I’m working around the house, driving, or going for a walk, you can bet I’m listening to a good book. Earbuds, bluetooth, anything goes. The app has some pretty sweet features, too – you can bookmark, set your playback speed, and even set a sleep timer if you’re a person who likes to listen to books as you wind down to fall asleep. It’s rare that Hoopla doesn’t have an audiobook I want, but when that happens, I can usually find it with our third option…
I can’t say enough good things about Audible. I use the app on my phone for on-the-go-listening. Their selection is fantastic, and I believe their 30 day free trial is still available here. It’s a delightful way to expand your listening library; a worthwhile subscription service if you want more books you can’t get with the other two options. Plus, if you ever get a book you decide you don’t like – no worries! You can return it and choose another title. So it’s truly a no-risk situation.
You’ll end up with a listening library of books you genuinely love. Win!
- Roll over any unused credits for up to 5 months.
- Easy exchanges—swap any audiobook you don’t love.
- Cancel anytime, your audiobooks are yours to keep.
And if Audible isn’t for you? Go back and check out the first two options listed above – they’re pretty amazing, too. 🙂
Now it’s your turn
If reading for pleasure has been pushed to the back burner because life is crazy, I hope these ideas will be of use for you. They’ve made a massive impact on my own reading life and I’m deeply grateful.
Find the time to listen while you drive, while you work around the house, and in the spare moments when you instinctively reach for your phone…reach for that book instead.
I’m raising my book to you. * book cheers! *
Here’s to a richer reading life.