Finding Time for Reading
I say, emphatically, that I’m not great at self-care. Side note: I also have some difficulties with the traditional ideas of self-care and the ways most of them are only available to those with lots of privilege. That is another post for another day though. I do, however, make time for reading.
I get asked a lot of questions about my reading habits and how I find time to read, what I like to read, how much I read, what I recommend reading . . . If you have more questions for me, leave them in the comments so I can answer them too!
I have always loved to read. Somewhere along the way, I learned to read really quickly. I tell people often that “speed reading is my best life skill,” and I still maintain that this is true. But I also don’t “speed read,” by skimming etc. I just read fast. Weird, I know. I actually just took a test that says I read 498 words per minute. Want to know how fast you read? You can take the reading speed test by Staples. Most people read 200-400 words per minute, apparently.
I read fiction much more quickly than non-fiction, because I love it more. And also because I read it for pleasure rather than in an attempt to learn something. I take my time reading non-fiction so I can chew on things, making sure concepts solidify in my mind. Typically, I am reading between 2-4 books simultaneously. I only read one fiction book at a time, but might be reading 2-3 nonfiction books.
Currently, I’m finishing On the Come Up, Angie Thomas’ new YA book. For nonfiction, I’m reading Four Gifts (because I’m trying to get better at self-care) and The Autobiography of Malcolm X. I also spend a lot of time in the car (carpool is my nemesis) time I try to make more enjoyable by listening to podcasts or an audiobook. Currently, I’m listening to So You Want to Talk About Race.
I keep track of the books I’m reading via GoodReads (please friend me on there). I also keep a running list in my journal of books I’m reading and jot down there when I hear about a book I want to read. My goal is to read 75 books this year, so far I’ve read 11. What are your reading goals this year? What are your favorite books? I want to know everything.
The biggest way I find time for reading is by sneaking it in where I can. This morning, the kids watched Netflix, and after my yoga class I snuck in fifteen minutes of reading. At night, I typically read for at least 30-45 minutes before going to bed. Adam watches a discovery channel show or something while I read so we can still go to bed at the same time. I also always have a book (or my kindle) in my bag so if I’m ever stuck waiting anywhere (doctor’s office, carpool line, etc), I can pull out my book instead of scrolling social media on my phone.
I could talk about reading forever, which is why this post is getting long. My favorite book of all-time-ever is Tattoos on the Heart, which is nonfiction but story-driven. And I am especially drawn to books that are well-written and could be considered “literary” but still have action of some sort and important underlying themes. I dont read a lot of fluffy books, or a lot of the heaviest most-acclaimed books. I suppose I fall somewhere in the middle, and get most of my books via recommendation in person or online. Have suggestions for me? What should I read next? Want to help me figure out how to put books on hold at the library? K, thanks.