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Read More Books: 7 Tips for Building a Reading Habit - College Info Geek



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Hey, how's it going, guys?

So in today's video we're gonna talk about

how to read more books.

Now, maybe you've already seen my video

on how to generally increase your reading speeds.

If you haven't, you can check it out right there.

But maybe you have, and maybe you've integrated

some of those tips into your life, which have helped you

get your reading speeds higher and higher,

maybe even up to that generally accepted cap

of 400 to 500 words per minute.

And yet, you haven't filled in the other part

of the equation, which is building a consistent

reading habit.

So this video is all about how to do that,

and I've got seven specific tips that will help you

become a more consistent reader.

So in my experience, the most important thing

you can do to read more consistently is to have

a certain number of pages you're going to read

every single day, and to turn it into a habit.

I was actually out in Colorado a couple of weeks ago

on a ski trip with a few friends, and we were in the Airbnb

one day after skiing ended, and I remember

my friends Matt and Ben were talking about books

they'd read recently, and both of them are entrepreneurs

so they're really busy, just like me, and yet they had

all this time to read all these books, and I was asking

like, dude, how do you guys find so much time to read

when you feel like you've got all these things to do?

And Matt told me, dude, I just wake up every morning

and I have my coffee, and I read 25 pages.

And after four days that's 100 pages, after 40 days

it's 1,000 pages.

It really adds up over time, and it works better than goals

like saying I'm gonna read one book a month

or two books a month, because then it's really easy

to justify pushing all your reading off later into the month

because you've got a lot of work to do right now.

Moving onto tips two and three, I'm gonna group

these two together because they have to do with how

you schedule your reading time.

Now, personally I know the later that it gets in the day,

the less likely it is for me to read.

My motivation starts to wane and other things start

to take up my attention, so I try to schedule

my reading time very early in the morning.

But, tip number three here, I do it after exercise.

And that's because the book I'm reading right now,

which is called Spark: The Revolutionary New Science

of Exercise and the Brain, talks a lot about how

exercise primes your brain for learning.

Exercise balances the levels of chemicals in your brain

known as neurotransmitters, which in turn improve

your ability to pay attention and prime your brain

to more efficiently absorb and remember new information.

And I take advantage of this by going to the gym

first thing in the morning, and then doing my reading.

Now tip number four is to do whatever you can

to make the process of reading as enjoyable as possible

because from what I've learned about how motivation

is affected by the rewards of tasks, rewards can really

be split into two different categories.

Number one, the reward you get at the end of the task,

whatever the result of the task is, but number two,

the enjoyment you get from doing the task itself.

So personally I go to a coffee shop and I get a latte

and I read while I have those things with me

and that makes the process much more enjoyable

than trying to do it at home.

Moving along to tip number five, now if you've chosen

to read after exercise, your ability to pay attention

and inhibit distractions is at it's peak, but you do

wanna cut out as many distractions as possible

just to give yourself the best possible chance

for focusing on your reading until you're done.

So, for me that means turning my phone onto

do not disturb mode, and packing it away in this bag

here, everything goes in this bag and it goes down

by my feet.

Everything is off the table except for the book

when I'm reading so it's just focused interaction

with the book and nothing else.

Now, distractions are one of the biggest things

that can derail your ability to get your reading done,

but there are certainly others, so tip number six

is to anticipate and remove as many barriers

to your success as possible.

For me that means making sure my bag is packed

every single night before I go to bed, and making sure

the book is in there, and also making sure I have

everything I need, like my book flags for making notes

and highlights, and my headphones just in case

the coffee shop is noisy.

Basically, I want to anticipate anything that could give

my brain an excuse to not read, and cut it out.

And, finally, tip number seven is to externalize

your motivation, and sort of take the choice of reading

out of your hands by making yourself accountable

to somebody else.

Now I do this in a couple different ways.

Number one is I have told my roommate Martin,

who reads way more books than me, that if I do not read

25 pages a day every single day for at least the next

three months, I will pay him $100.

So if I skip even one day, I'm gonna lose out on a lot

of money.

And secondly, I have made a public page on my website

where I will be updating my progress every single day

in an embedded Google spreadsheet, so every day

I have to record how many pages I read,

and anybody can see that and call me out if I don't.

Now in last week's video we talked about why

it's a bad idea in general to tell people about your goals,

but I do think when you build accountability

into it, and you're talking to people about your progress,

rather than your big grand vision, it can actually be

much more motivating than if you kept it to yourself.

And I'd be curious to hear what your thoughts are on that.

Anyway, if you'd like to have a look at my progress

page, there'll be a link in the description down below,

and you can do this yourself even without being publicly

accountable by using a tool like Habitica or Coach.me.

There's lots of habit-tracking tools that can basically

get you the same result, but I have decided to be

publicly accountable about it.

Hopefully you enjoyed this video and found it helpful.

If you did, give it a like to support this channel,

and if you'd like to get new tips every single week

on being a more effective student, you can click

that big red subscribe button right down there.

I also wrote a book on how to earn better grades,

so if you'd like to get a free copy sent to your email

you can click the picture of the book.

And if you missed last week's video, we talked about why

in general it's a bad idea to tell people about your goals,

so check it out if you missed it.

You can check out the full article for this video

and get the link to my reading progress page

by clicking the orange button right there.

And, lastly, if you wanna connect, I'm on Instagram

and Twitter @TomFrankly, or you can leave

a comment down below.

Thanks for watching.