Fifteen minutes at a time

I have had people ask me how I get so much reading done. I make time for it. I am not a fast reader, really, but I pick up my book or Kindle whenever I have free moments.

“I could do that if I ignored work, my kids, my spouse, etc.” No. I don’t. I just do my reading in little chunks. Waiting in line. During breaks at work. Waiting for a dental appointment. On the train or bus. All useful quiet time.

I start reading about fifteen minutes before I plan on falling asleep. This actually helps with my insomnia, too. My body knows that if I’m lying down reading, it’s almost sleep time. I used to have hours of awake time at night. Now it’s about fifteen minutes after I start reading. Sometimes less.

I multitask. Read the book on the treadmill. Bring the waterproof Kindle to the pool and hot tub. Run the audiobook in the car.

Another trick I learned us to put on my headphones. When my family sees them on, they know I can’t hear them well. They get my attention if they are addressing me, but if they are talking to each other, they are muffled. This is usually at the point where I’m trying to sleep. I’m not just ignoring them.

The main thing, though is that I turn the TV off and read during the time that I’d normally be watching TV. The TV is a big distraction. I have learned to only watch the few shows a week that I actually enjoy. The rest of my former TV time is spent reading.

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