Making Time for Reading

Since when did reading make me lazy?

According to Pew Research Center, only about 72% of US adults read a book in any format in the last year. It averages out to about 12 books per American adult per month, but before you get excited, that’s the mean — the median number was only 4. 4 books read over the course of an entire year. I don’t know about you, but the idea of taking 3 months to read a single book boggles my mind, or at least it would have a couple years ago.

This past year, I have not spent nearly as much time reading as I used to, and I connect it with some things I learned as a college student. After some time, I connected reading with doing school, and started to feel like reading was exhausting. Whenever I would pick up a book, it would feel like homework, and to make things worse, I would still feel like I was being lazy because there I was with the energy to read and I dared not spend it all on homework.

That was the day that reading became un-fun. Somehow, it got into my head that reading something that wasn’t school related was a waste of time, and that if I had energy to read I should be doing homework. As you can imagine, this was not good for my “to be read” stack, which increased significantly over the course of the year. Strangely enough, I also started having a harder time focusing on schoolwork, because that time which had previously been spent following plots and character development was taken up with over-the-top studying and way more time on electronics, which was really not great for my productivity. Turns out, that reading wasn’t such a waste of time.

So, I am going back. Every single month this year I am going to read at least one book that is completely unrelated to school, and I am challenging you to join me. Large or small, fiction or non-fiction, physical copy or ebook or audio book, commit yourself to stretching your mind and your world through reading one book every single month, and work your way through that dusty stack you’ve been meaning to get to but never quite do.

Make this year the year you experience a dozen (or more) other worlds, lives, and stories.

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