Initially Publish February, 2017

I recently read an article that calculated the average time an American spends on social media every year equals the time it would take to read 200 books. Books have so much to offer all of us and we should be seeking a better balance between TV, social media, and reading. I fought for years to find that balance, but consistently only read a handful of books each year. I lacked the discipline necessary to make the time to read daily.

However, five years ago I made the commitment to read one book a week for a year. Now I consistently read between 1-2 books a week without consciously even trying. How did I make this change? It wasn’t one thing I did, it was a bunch of little things. Below are the changes I made, which you might find helpful!

9 Tips for Reading More in the 21st Century

1. List: Start by making a list of books. Have a variety between biographies, non-fiction, classic literature, modern literature, etc.. I’d encourage you to have some personal development books on that list. Books that will provide inspiration and insight into becoming a better person.

2. Audiobooks: Great for long car rides or while I am doing some work around the house.

3. Phone: I always thought my phone was too small for reading a book. However, one day it hit me that I was already spending hours reading on my phone (just not books), so why not put a book on my phone to read as well? Download the Kindle or iBooks app for your phone.

4. Journal: Write down your favorite quotes or just scribble down any thoughts you may have worth remembering when reading a book. It’s a powerful way to get more value from your reading.

4. Commit: Make a daily commitment to reading. I started with just 5 minutes each day.

5. Share: Share your list with a friend or on social media. You are more likely to followthrough on your commitments if you make them public.

6. Discuss: People love talking about a good book they read recently. Book clubs or just reading a book with a friend can be really valuable.

7. Multiple Books: Sometimes I am looking for a good story! Other times I need some heavy reading. Currently I cycle between a hardcopy book, audiobook, and E-book on my phone. When I am reading three books at a time they are typically very different genres.

8. Read with Others: On my podcast (Coaching Culture) Greg McKeown Author of NY Times Bestseller Essentialism shared he and his wife read every night together aloud. It’s a great way to connect with people.

If you’d like to discover some more ways to learn more form your reading check out this article.