How to Be a Better Reader

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Leaders are readers.

Most of us have heard this statement and even agree with it but life has a way of interfering with what we know we should do. Maybe one or your New Year’s goals back in January was to read more in 2023. How are you doing with that goal? I want to give you a few tips that can help you make reading a bigger part of your life.

For the last 30+ years, I have consistently read 30 to 50 books a year. For many people that sounds like a lot of books! But how would you like to have a goal of reading one book a month? Reading 12 books a years is a great goal to strive for and it’s a goal that you can reach if you’re willing to work at little bit.

So, how can you reach this milestone?

1. Set aside a few minutes each day for reading. Where can you carve out a few minutes to read a good book? Maybe you could read on your lunch break. Of course, this would mean not checking your Facebook or Instagram but twenty to thirty minutes of reading at lunch would probably translate to reading a book a month.

Some people like to read at night. If you do, I suggest turning the TV off early and reading while you are still somewhat awake. Reading right before you go to sleep is not the best idea. If you go to the gym, your cardio time on the treadmill or stationary bike can also be a great time to read a good book.

2. Take advantage of your commute. My home city is just outside Atlanta, Georgia. The average worker in Atlanta has a commute of 30 minutes. What do you do during your time in the morning and evening traffic besides fuming at the bad drivers around you? What if you used that time to listen to audio books? With a 30-40 minute commute each way, you could probably listen to three or four books a month. Public libraries have hundreds of audio books that you can check out for free. Take advantage of them!

3. Read what interests you. This sounds so basic but too often we can fall into the trap of thinking we need to read things that are “good” for us. This is not a bad thing but if we are not in the habit of reading at all, it is probably best that we get into the habit by reading things that we enjoy. Self-help books, leadership books, and financial books are all great. At the same time, however, reading good fiction stimulates our minds and can help us to become more creative. Read what you enjoy!

4. Talk to others about what you are reading. What are you learning from your reading? I find that when I talk to a friend about a book that we have both enjoyed, it helps me process the information better. Book Clubs are great opportunities to meet new people and discuss great books. There are even on-line communities that talk about books.

What is holding you back from becoming a more consistent reader?

Take a look at my Resource Page for some of my books. Annie and I appreciate your encouragement and support as we serve the Lord in the United States, Africa, South America, and India. If you would like to be a part of our support team, just click here. Thanks so much!

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