How to build a reading habit?

Tanoy Chowdhury
12 replies
I enjoy reading. But, off-late I have been struggling to maintain this habit. I'm here to get some ideas & learn from your practices If you're a reader, what do you do to make sure you read at least a few pages every day? How do you squeeze time out of your schedule?


Alec Dobbie
I read twice daily, I've built it into my regime. As weird as it sounds I read a non-fiction book for ten minutes every morning, doesn't sound much (or weird more to come) but adds up. I do this standing on one leg, to improve ankle strength, this seems to help me maintain routine and concentrate on the book. I do it with a coffee every morning. Over the last year, I've read books by Buddhist monks, Harvard professors and business leaders. 10 minutes daily adds up. If it matters I read on the Kindle app on my phone. I also read in the evening, 30 minutes of something light, usually Warhammer 40k. I finished the Horus Hersey (43 books) this way. I find it helps me sleep.
Wiktoria Jaszcza
@alec_dobbie1 "10 minutes daily adds up". True, and if I let go of those daily 10 minutes in favor of my phone...
Tanoy Chowdhury
@alec_dobbie1 That's some serious level of commitment, Alec. Very inspiring. I particularly liked how you hit two birds with one stone - reading & doing one-leg stands. Building small habits like reading every morning for 10 minutes will certainly improve my reading habit. Thanks for sharing your profound practice, and I'm sorry for the late reply.
Sanja Mitar
I wanted to read more so I set a goal to read 10 pages a day for a month. For me, a person who thrives on routine, I needed to have a regimented time ( mornings are best for me so that's when I did it). 10 pages is a low lift goal and often, I'd get so into it that'd I'd read more than 10 pages. Doing this for 30 days turned it into a habit. It's been 3 years and I haven't stopped 📚👊🏻
Tanoy Chowdhury
@sanja_mitar 10 pages a day for 3 years, that's crazy impressive! I know a lot of people who like to block specific time in their schedule to do their favourite tasks. But, I have also seen many of them continue it only for a few days. You're certainly an inspiration. I don't know if I could do 10 pages, but I can start with 5. Let's see how far I go. Thanks for commenting, Sanja. I apologize for the late reply.
Kai Hess
Great question. Personally it has become my wind down at night. Something that really only developed after setting a tech curfew. When it is dark outside and all you can grab is a kindle or real book, you'll be amazed how the pages go by. Professionally, we've built reading into our culture. The scope doesn't have to be as large as a book, but any content that sparks something. Set a precedent of constantly sharing interesting articles and establish a personal habit to read and react on content with your teammates, even as a short mental break from a project. As time goes by the articles get more interesting and the communication around them more engaging.
Wiktoria Jaszcza
Read at a consistent time and consciously, out of habit, put your phone away. It's possible to squeeze time out of the schedule if you fight for it. At least those 10 minutes. It's better than nothing. Like @alec_dobbie1 said: It adds up.
Matthew Ritchie
Recently, I've been using an app called Habit to create reminders to do certain things each day (I was finding it too easy to ignore my Google Calendar alerts). I usually set one three days a week (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday) reminding me to read in bed for 30 minutes each morning. It holds me accountable, and in the past month, I've read two books—not bad!
Matthew Johnson
Timeblocking for me is the best way to build habits. If you are timeblocking out all your time already for specific tasks, then also make sure to include timeblocks for new habits you want to build: reading, exercise, even remembering to take a new medication.
Elena Cirera
Determine your goal for reading, visit bookshops, libraries and online bookstores.
Cathy Patalas
start small, set a goal of reading 5-10 pages per day and slowly increase this number. Wake up 20 minutes before your regular time make a coffee/tea and sowly start your morning by reading or end your day by reading and setting time in your daily schedule for this
Srishty Chaudhary
Hi Tanoy, As a reader, I can totally relate to what you are saying because no matter what sometimes we zone into the reading slump. The first thing you can do is think about the benefit of reading everyday because if you will consider this then at least you will pick something to read. Secondly, you can decide a minimum time that you want to give. Start with small time frame like for 30 minutes or so and stick to that timing. Decide a particular time when you are free of distractions both from work and other things. While reading, keep your phone on silent or DND so that you are not distracted from any call or message. I hope this helps you in getting back on your habit.