It’s not always easy to stay with your reading plan, particularly when work, home, and life get in the way. You may also find yourself stuck on the book you’ve chosen and feel unable to move on. Whatever challenges you face with your goals, here are tips that will help you schedule and get through that reading list–one day at a time!
- Make a List of Books: You’ve likely already got a stack of books that you’ve been meaning to read, or you may have several lists of famous and noteworthy books that you’ve been meaning to book.
- Book Source: If you already own the book, you can skip this tip, but if you don’t own the book, you need to determine whether you will buy, borrow or download a copy. If money is a consideration, you’ll also want to factor that in with your choice of which books are on your schedule for the year.
- Personal Speed: Determine your reading speed (you can take a timed test on MindBluff), so you can determine the number of days it will take to complete a book.
- Page Number: Based on your average reading speed, decide how many pages you plan to read every day and determine which days you plan to read. Will you read every day, skip weekends, only read on weekends, only Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays?
- Pick One Book: You must start somewhere, so pick one book you want to read first. Remember: you have lots of time to read other books, so don’t stress over your choice.
- Plan Out Your First Book: Based on the number of pages you’ll read daily, flip through the book and note good stopping points. It’s usually easier to schedule around chapter breaks, but you can also be more strict with your schedule, stopping on the exact page for that day.
- Digital or Traditional? What kind of calendar/schedule will you use? Your schedule can comprise something as simple as a sheet of paper or a journal book, where you write down the dates and page numbers for the reading selections for each day. Or you can elaborate with free (and paid) schedules and calendars. Whatever tracking system you use, be consistent, and keep as much on schedule as possible.
- Review: After finishing one book, review what you loved (and hated about your reading schedule). If you hated it, what can you change to improve your experience? Was your schedule too demanding? Or, did it not allow you to read ENOUGH? Remember: This plan will (hopefully) motivate you to keep on-task with the reading you enjoy, anyway. It’s not meant to be painful or frustrating.
- Alternatives? You may discover that the reading schedule doesn’t work for you, and that’s okay. There are other options! If you still want a schedule but don’t want it to be as stringent, pick a book for the month and read it–keeping that last-day-of-the-month deadline as your goal. You can also join a book club online or in your local community. Or, you can find a fellow reader-friend who agrees to be your reading motivator.
If the schedule works for you, move on to the next book on your list. You can follow the same process of determining the daily reading selection and adjusting your schedule (and the number of pages) as needed.
Once you’re out of school (and/or college), and in the “real world” of reading, the reading schedule and the list are completely up to you, as is where, when, and how you plan to read and enjoy those books. Don’t get stressed out by trying to accomplish everything. Select those books you know you’ll love, and then work on a reading schedule that will work for you and your life (work, family, activities, etc.)