Read One Book a Week with This Simple Trick (it's free!)
I love reading, it's one of my favorite hobbies and I truly believe everyone should read a book each month, but most people have the same excuse - "I don't have enough time or patience to sit down and read". I get it! Last year I was working FOUR jobs, volunteering on my weekends and hosting a bible study group - and I was able to read a book per week. It's completely possible and easy to do. Today I'll teach you my super simple secret: AUDIOBOOKS.
Dear "I prefer to read a physical book" snobs,
How many books did you read this past year? If your answer is under 10, get off your high horse and join us in the twenty-first century. Listening to audiobooks on your commute does not mean you need to throw away your home library or never pick up a physical book again. I regularly read "real books", in fact, I read a chapter every single night... buuttttt I love reading and one chapter a night just doesn't get me through all the books I want to read fast enough.
Ok? Good? Let's move on.
Libby / Overdrive / Audible
By now, you've probably heard of Audible, it's Amazon's subscription app that allows you to purchase audiobooks and ebooks on your phone. It's an awesome app and can help you read more on-the-go when you don't always have time to sit down and read a physical book. But... let me do you one better... Libby and Overdrive are free apps that let you borrow audio and ebooks.
If you have a library card, you can use Libby or Overdrive (they're the same company, just different apps, choose which you like more). You can sign up for a library account online if you don't already have a library card, but you might need to go pick up the card in order to keep the account open. Each library varies so you'll need to be sure to read the fine print when you sign up for the account.
One of my favorite thing about Audiobooks is the ability to set a speed. I read books very quickly, I'm just a fast reader. So listening to audiobooks at normal speed can sometimes drive me a bit crazy. One of my secrets to reading so many books is that I listen to the book at two times the speed. At first that might sound crazy fast, but if you slowly bump up the speed, it is surprisingly easy to follow along and cuts the book time in half. This is how I read Game of Thrones in under a week ;)
My sister is as crazy about books as I am, and when she introduced me to this site a few years ago, I was hooked. It's like social media for bookworms. Goodreads lets you set yearly goals for how many books you'd like to read. You can track what books you've read, are currently reading, and would like to read. You can write and read reviews, enter giveaways and connect with the community.
It's free to sign up and super simple to navigate. In the past few years, it's been a ton of fun to look back at all the books I've read and been able to see how my preferences have changed. It's also super helpful to have one spot to store recommended books from friends and family so that I don't forget about them.
Finding spare times to read / listen to books
Audiobooks make it so much easier to listen to books on the go. I don't always have time to sit down and read a book, but I can listen to them in the car, at work, while making dinner, or while I grocery shop. I've been able to read a book per week over the last couple of years by using spare time to listen to books.
That being said, I still love sitting down and making time to just read and single-task. For me, I enjoy reading on weekend mornings, while eating breakfast or just before getting out of bed to start the day. Reading is a hobby for me, so just like anything else, I make sure that I block out time to work on that hobby. One habit I've built over the last year, is to read one chapter of a book before bed. I have a bookshelf full of gifts and recommendations, so I work my way through those slowly night-by-night while listening to other books during my work day.
You might not be able to listen to books at work like I am, so a book per week might be a bit of a stretch. However, reading more is the goal. There are so many wonderful stories and things to learn in the books that line the shelves around the world. Making time for a few of them can help you to continue to learn and grow.