The Myths of People Who Read A LOT
We have all know we should read more. The evidence is abundant that reading helps to improve your vocabulary, creativity, and writing skills. It also of course can improve your knowledge and critical thinking skills. So why don’t we read more often? The truth is that it can be intimidating to get started, and many of us carry self limiting beliefs in the form of myths about people who read a lot. Below are some of the myths that you might have in your head that could be preventing you from becoming the reader you want to be!
Myth #1: They only read “smart” books
While of course there are book snobs out there, most people choose to read about what they love, no matter how trivial or superficial it may seem to others. Especially when you are getting started, the key is to:
“read what you love until you love to read”
It takes a topic that you are truly interested in to get you sucked in, but eventually you find yourself enjoying the comforting hypnotic state of being immersed in a book. Many people find it easiest to start with autobiographies because they are written in a conversational and engaging way. Remember that reading anything is better than reading nothing!
Myth "#2: They finish every book they start
This is the classic hurdle that we all have suffered from. You start a book, and can’t get into it, yet feel the need to ‘finish it’. Before long it feels like a hopeless chore and it becomes an abandoned bedside table accessory. Imagine if we had this same attitude towards TV shows - punishing yourself to finish what you started instead of moving on when you realise it’s not for you. Life is short! If you’re not enjoying the book, move on! You can tell yourself that the book is ‘on hold’ for you to come back to at a later date if that helps.
Myth #3: They read here there and everywhere
The stereotypical book nerd is constantly reading everywhere; while walking, eating, shopping, etc. In reality the people who read a lot simply have a good routine that they stick to. Of course the most common is reading before bed - and this is not without it’s merits. Reading before bed is a great natural remedy for insomnia, and there are a few reasons for this. The first is that it is peaceful and calm so helps you wind down and put away your thoughts for the day. The second is that blue light - the type that comes from our phone, iPad and laptop screens - actually interferes with your ability to fall asleep. So pulling out a book gives your eyes a break and lets your body start to relax. On top of this, another benefit is that by setting a nightly routine, you are improving your sleep hygiene.
Myth #4: They read fast
Not everyone is a speed reader! In fact, many book lovers read so much because they approach reading with more a “chip away at it” mentality. Some people set themselves targets when they read of at least fifteen pages, or twenty minutes. Some read incredibly slowly to really let each sentence digest. It’s a bit like eating - some people shovel down their food, and others savor every bite. Don’t worry if you read slow! Enjoy the process and you will get through the book eventually.
Myth #5: They don’t do Audiobooks
Audiobooks are actually a book lover’s dream! When you are gripped in a book but can’t read a physical book, Audiobooks are the answer. You can listen while driving, cleaning, exercising, waiting in line…you get the idea!
If you want to get started on reading more, you need to find a reliable source for the types of books that you will enjoy. If you’re wanting to start off with autobiographies, as a starting point think of celebrities that you are interested in, perhaps TV shows, movies or music that you love.
It’s also worth finding a source for reliable book recommendations. Ask friends and family for recommendations, you will be surprised with how good they can be! Goodreads.com is also an excellent online source for book recommendations.