How To Build a Reading/Listening Habit That Will Last a Lifetime

Reading is a fantastic way to expand your knowledge, improve your cognitive abilities, and entertain yourself at the same time. However, many people struggle to build a reading habit.

Is reading an activity you dread? My daughter Jessica read at every opportunity until she reached junior high. As a seventh grader she told me that nothing was as important as spending time with her friends and reading was solitary activity. Some of my friends dread reading because they think they are poor readers. As adults, these friends embrace audio books.

For some, it can be tough to find the time and motivation to read regularly, especially when there are so many other distractions in life. But fear not, we will be discussing some practical tips to help you build a reading habit (reading or listening to books) that will last a lifetime.

  1. Start Small: One of the most common mistakes people make when trying to build a reading habit is that they set unrealistic goals for themselves. If you’re not used to reading regularly, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to sit down and read a whole book in one sitting. Instead, start small and set achievable goals. For example, commit to reading for just 15 minutes a day or one chapter a day. It might not seem like much, but it’s a great way to build the habit without overwhelming yourself.
  1. Find a Genre You Enjoy: Another common reason people struggle to build a reading habit is that they’re not reading the right books. If you don’t enjoy what you’re reading, you’re not likely to stick with it. So, take some time to explore different genres and find what you enjoy. Maybe you’re a fan of mystery novels or non-fiction books about science. Whatever it is, find a genre that excites you and start there.

As an adult, my childhood friend told me that he never read an entire book until he found the western genre. Now he can’t wait to get back to his books.

  1. Make Reading a Priority: It’s easy to push reading to the bottom of your to-do list when you have a million other things to do. But if you want to build a reading habit, you need to make it a priority. Set aside time each day specifically for reading and treat it like any other important task. You’ll be amazed at how quickly it becomes a habit when you make it a priority.
  1. Create a Reading Routine: Creating a reading routine can be incredibly helpful in building a reading habit. Maybe you like to read first thing in the morning, or maybe you prefer to read before bed. Drive to work? Listen to books while driving. Whatever your preference, create a routine that works for you and stick to it. Consistency is key when it comes to building a habit, so try to make your reading routine as regular as possible.

Neal and I can’t wait to travel because we listen to audio books while on the road. We save long books for long road trips.

  1. Join a Book Club: Joining a book club can be a great way to motivate yourself to read regularly. Not only will you have a group of people to discuss books with, but you’ll also have a set deadline for finishing the book. This can be incredibly helpful in keeping you accountable and motivated to read regularly.

Build a reading habit that lasts a lifetime. Start small, find a genre you enjoy, make reading a priority, create a reading routine, and/or join a book club. With these tips, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a lifelong reader. Remember, it’s never too late to start building a habit, so grab a book and get reading!

The simple fact that you exist guarantees you deserve the best that life offers. You ARE enough exactly as you are!