Let’s get this out of the way: I love books. LOVE them. I love to read them, look at them, talk about them, and write them. Oh, gosh. I love how they feel in my hands, too. But for all of my loving, I don’t read as much as I want to.

I have a feeling you’d say the same. And that’s one reason you’ve signed up for the Summer Reading Program. You want to read more. You want your kids to read more.

With this in mind, our first blog series this summer falls under the topic of #readmore. In this post, we’re delving into some practical steps to stack up reading minutes.

Where do you find the time?

It may be difficult to devote hours to sit and read, but you don’t need a large chunk of time to increase your reading. Life can be hectic in different seasons. If you can’t carve out 90 minutes of reading time in one sitting, grab a few minutes here and there.

  • Set aside 15 minutes before you start your day
  • Take 20 minutes at lunch
  • Turn the TV off at night and read instead

Stack up your minutes during the day.

Here are a few tips we found to help develop a better reading habit.

1. Get a Goal

The saying goes, what gets measured gets improved. We do want to read more. But sometimes wanting is merely wishing.
I wish I had time to read.
I wish I read faster.
I wish, I wish, I wish.

But the Summer Reading Program has given us a gift. That gift is A GOAL. (And a nifty minutes-tracker!) We’re not just wishing anymore. We’re logging minutes toward a goal. We’re making progress. We’re doing it!

2. Borrow a Book

Borrowed books must be returned. There is a time limit built into a borrow. The due date acts as a motivator. Sure, we can buy books and add them to our To-Be-Read (TBR) list. But when we borrow, the book isn’t just TBR. It’s TBR by a specific date.

Borrow.
Read.
Return.
Repeat.

Borrowing is a motivator to read more. Borrow a book from your library. They’ll have audio books and ebooks too. You can even load ebooks on your own Kindle or reading device.  

3. Put a Book on Your Pillow

Dad and son reading in bed, happy.This tip comes from James Clear, author of Atomic Habits. When you get up and make your bed in the morning, put a book on your pillow. (You can do this with your kids, too. Let your child pick out a bedtime book in the morning and put it on their pillow.) This will be a visual reminder to get in some reading time every night—a treat to look forward to.

1) Make bed
2) Put book on pillow

It’s a simple action. But how many extra reading minutes would this simple action create? Try it out and let us know!

By taking a few small steps you can increase your reading this summer. Build a lifetime habit that will enrich, inspire, and inform.

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