Here are simple ways to help you keep books in the loop after you restart your life.
During lockdown, we all had to adjust – or completely change – our daily habits. A dramatic increase in stress, combined with an excess of free time, dominated our lives in recent weeks or months.
Suddenly, non-avid readers realized they would have enough time to complete this year’s reading challenge before summer too. And, as books are one of the best-known ways to reduce stress, most of us rediscovered the joy of reading.
So when your life returns to its pre-pandemic state, you should definitely keep reading books as part of your day.
And even after quarantine is over and our lives are back to normal, the real challenge is to include reading as part of your new daily routine and develop a habit of reading for half an hour or an hour, at the most convenient time and place.
Here are a few tips how to do it.
How to keep reading books after quarantine is over?
Analyze your lockdown habits to find the best time to read
When did you enjoy reading the most? Was it an evening or early morning, before the rest of the family woke up?
Which day of the week was best for endless reading sessions? Were you reading in your bedroom, living room, or at the back of a garden? Did you enjoy reading with a cup of coffee and a muffin during breakfast?
All you can do is find the time and place as close to ideal as possible – and try to include it in your new daily schedule.
Develop a habit of reading in the meantime
For many people, living in quarantine was about fighting for time and energy between video calls which were breaking each and every day into an endless sequence of short chaotic intervals.
How have you been managing short breaks between video conference calls and home duties? Could you do anything more than just staring at the screen of your tablet or going through your Facebook’s timeline?
Some people developed a skill of escaping into the world of books any time they had a few minutes of spare time. Reading for just 6 minutes can help reduce stress by up to 68%. Just like books helped you survive the lockdown, they can be helpful when you come back to the new normal. It’s just a matter of looking for relief the books can give in other places and situations – and as often as possible.
Find balance between print and digital
The pandemic forced many bookworms to change their reading habits. Without the possibility to visit a library and borrow print books, library patrons were forced to learn how to borrow digital ones.
The same goes with online shopping – buying an ebook version of a new novel from a favorite author was a reliable way to get it in seconds. In case of a paperback, there would be a risk of a delay in shipping.
Have you tried reading an ebook on your smartphone? Were you looking for free ebooks to download for your new tablet? Have you bought a Kindle to fully engage into reading ebooks? Have you been looking for ways to embrace audiobooks?
You don’t have to go 100% digital. Just the opposite. The pandemic was pushing readers into digital books, as they were safer and more convenient, but it doesn’t mean you will no longer visit your favorite bookstore on your way back from work.
Make sure you have access to books in different formats, and pick up the one which suits you the most in your current mood. Don’t be a slave of one book format. Having books both in print and digital makes you more flexible and better prepared to read in any imaginable circumstances.
Keep three or four books in the reading
The moment you free yourself from a specific format and specific book is the moment you will more dynamically manage what to read, when to read, and in which format to read.
Now is the best time to fight the “I have to finish this book” syndrome. During lockdown, when you could read and finish even several books a week, you must have realized the more is the better.
With multiple formats at hand, you can have several books in the reading. One book is better for the evening; another one fits the tempo of a lunch break; the next one would be the perfect Sunday afternoon read.
It’s good to have a book reading app on a phone, to have something to read when you wait in a surprisingly long queue. It’s worth downloading an audiobook which could be ready to play in a traffic jam. It’s worth having a print book or a Kindle on a bedside table, ready to make you happy before falling asleep.
Don’t regret abandoning the book
The “I have to finish this book” syndrome blocks you from reaching for another book, and in most cases makes the book you read (and possible don’t like) grow to a big heavy remorse which starts to scare you any time you think about reading.
With multiple books in multiple formats, it’s easier to abandon a book you don’t like. There are still a few others that you haven’t finished yet. What’s more, think about excitement of finding the next book to read!
Learn to switch between reading and listening
Some books stop you from reading. But there are also the books that you want to finish as fast as possible.
There is a possibility to do it even quicker than before. You can combine two digital formats to make sure you can follow the plot even if you can’t read.
Many times, we talked on this blog about a great Kindle feature called Whispersync for Voice. If you have a Kindle book, you can add an audiobook companion. Using your Kindle app on an iPad or Android, you can seamlessly switch between reading a book and listening to its audiobook version.
The magic of Whispersync for Voice is the ease of change between the reading and listening, and the beauty of delving into the story in different ways.
You can start reading a book in the morning, listening to it while driving a car, and reading again in the evening, before you fall asleep.
Let a book subscription push you to read more
If you notice that keeping books among your common activities becomes more and more difficult, you can always get a digital subscription that would become a motivational tool to keep you reading each day.
Book subscriptions, such as Kindle Unlimited or Scribd, cost around $10 per month. It’s the cost of one best-selling novel, but gives access to millions of books across many categories.
What’s more, these digital subscriptions offer not only ebooks but also digital comic books, graphic novels, as well as popular magazines. And thousands of audiobooks are included as well.
As a result, with access to an unlimited number of great titles, you may become determined to make the most use of your subscription.
Develop a habit of 7-minute reading workouts
Lockdown forced us to replace outdoor activities with what you can do at home. Have you tried Facebook lessons from your favorite fitness instructor? Have you downloaded one of those 7-minute workout apps to help you stay fit and active?
If the 7-minute workout has become a part of your daily routine, why not add another one: this time it’s about keeping your mind in optimal state.
Imagine you add to your workout schedule the time slot to read a book for 7, 10, or 30 minutes. Some book reading apps help you track your reading speed and goals, so you can have the stats, too!
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