Learnings from my 30-day reading challenge

I did it. 30 days of reading in a row. It sounds pretty easy, but it’s harder than you think. I’ve made several attempts before without success. There were always something that gotten in the way, I missed some days, and the habit didn’t stick.

This time feels different. And the approach was also slightly different. Here were some of the learnings that made this time a success:

Only read books you’re excited about.┬áI only read books that I was really excited about from reading reviews and summaries on Amazon. I also dropped one book during the 30 days because I wasn’t excited about it. Don’t think the excitement will come later, find another book.

5 minutes is enough. The purpose was to form a habit, not read as much as I could in 30 days (although I read 5 books). But telling myself: “just read 5 minutes, and do something else” made all the differnce. Because you almost always have 5 minutes. And the trick is that when you have a book you are really excited about, you are not going to read only 5 minutes ­čÖé But it will help you start, which is always the hardest part.

Make your book visible. I have a kindle, and I made sure I brought it anywhere I went. To work, on trips, even to the toilet sometimes. Another thing that worked was to purposely put it somewhere you normally sit and relax, on your bed pillow, or in the couch.

Trigger or not? Some┬árecommend to you use a trigger to form a habit – something you do everyday that triggers the action you want. I didn’t do that, but I think it could work. One trigger for reading could be the remote control to your tv. Everytime you pick it up, you have to read for 5 minutes minimum. You can’t watch TV before. If you choose the right books, I am sure you will find your self reading rather than watching most of your evenings.

I’ve read more books, gotten more inspiration and knowledge than I have for the past year before that. It feels really good. Now I hope it will stick with me.

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