How To Read More This Year

I’ve always been a big reader – it’s just something that I love to do.

In 2018 and for turning 22, I really want to make it a priority to be on my phone less. Like I’ve mentioned, I’d like to think I’m pretty good at this. A few months ago, I deleted my Snapchat. (So if you’ve been sending me dog filter selfies – I’m not being rude by not responding, I am simply not getting them!) I also deleted the Twitter app from my phone, but I still have my account. Cameron likes to DM me funny tweets and videos via Twitter, but now he just remembers to show them to me when we’re together. It’s almost like having a special inbox just for us. And my new blog posts post to Twitter, so those of you that are avid users can see new posts that way if you wish.

That being said, I still cling to my phone like it’s the last gulp of coffee in my mug in the mornings.

I notice that I scroll Instagram when I just kind of want to numb out. I’m bored and I’m waiting in line at the self-scan at Kroger. Scroll. I’m waiting for something in the microwave. Scroll. It’s kinda a bad habit I’m wanting to break because an innocent scroll sesh quickly turns into a down-the-rabbit-hole moment.

I’ve learned that with goal-setting, you gotta be specific. By saying, “I want to be on my phone less” I’m prepping myself for a whole lot of – nothing. What else should I do with my time? How will I accomplish this?

Reading! 

Duh. How could I not think of this? If I have a book with me while waiting to get my tires done or while at the nail salon, I’ll definitely be more keen to turn to that than the explore page on Insta.

I know a lot of you want to read more this year, too. (You’ve told me. On Instagram of all places, no less.) 

I’d love to share my tips with you today. Reading is a great escape and yet a great way to be productive. It can ease your mind yet also build your mind, and I think it’s awesome that you’re wanting to read more.

Find a cheaper way to get your books

You can do this one of several ways, but it’s important to try this tip. I love to support Barnes and Noble because it’s one of my favorite places on planet Earth, but I know that if I limit myself to getting my reading material here, I’ll be less likely to read so many books because at about $20 a pop, I’ll really break the bank.

(However, I do recommend hitting up the bargain priced section at B&N. Lots of great gems there! And if you are quite the bookworm, look into a Barnes and Noble membership…I have one! It’s $25 a year, but you get some sweet deals and money off your purchases.)

My favorite cheap ways to get books are the following:

Goodwill (price: $0.25-1.25) 

I ADORE getting books at Goodwill. They are around 99 cents and they have some best sellers. Think Twilight series, lots of Nora Roberts, thrillers, cookbooks, recently made into movie dramas, and the ever popular Nicholas Sparks books. There are bound to be a few duds here and there, but they’re so cheap that it’s worth a shot. The other day I got about 13 books for $8 since Goodwill has different sticker deals on different days!

Public libraries (price: free, with proof of residency) 

I’ve rambled enough about my love for the public library. Get a library card. It’s free. Checkout books. For free. Happiness. For free.

Take a book/Leave a book (price: free) 

We have a couple of these in my neighborhood, so keep your eyes peeled around your area! I also often find these nooks at coffee shops, gyms, therapy offices, etc. I keep books in the trunk of my car (and Cam’s) so we can do a trade-off whenever we think of it. Again – totally free!

No phone first thing in the morning and right before sleeping

See how the phone thing is tied to the reading thing? Yeah. So to use my phone less, I’ve set a rule that I can’t check my phone for the first 20 minutes in the morning. This is the time I stumble downstairs for my warm lemon water (which you’ll see in my current morning routine I want to share soon). So instead, I read my current book while I sip my lemon water. And then at night, I stop checking Instagram, emails, and replying to DMs about 30 minutes before going to sleep. I read at this time, too!

You can set the times however you like – maybe you’re more ambitious at this point and want to do an hour in the morning and an hour in the evening. Maybe you can only do 10 minutes at each….that’s still good – 20 minutes of reading time a day is over 2 hours a week which could get you pretty far into a novel.

Read something you like

Just because everyone is reading You Are A Badass does not mean you have to read You Are A Badass. I think each of us has pretty good judgement of what we like. I always read the back of a book (the synopsis) and then maybe flip through a couple pages. If it catches me attention – great! If it seems “meh”, then no thanks. Sometimes to speed up the process, I’ll get into a good little rhythym where I read books by authors I know I like, so I’m more likely to enjoy what I pick up. Another tip is to search for books to read by reading book reviews on popular blogs like Carly The Prepster and The Stripe (those are just my two favorites) and then go ahead and make a list of the ones you want to read.

For my “to-read” list, I have a digital version on my Goodreads account. Also free to create an account…and the app is free!

Don’t forget your book

Sounds a little no-brainer, but bring your book with you everywhere like it’s a security blanket – haha. Bring it to the doctor’s office, your boyfriend’s house, work for your lunch break, etc.

It’s ok to stop reading a book if you don’t like it

I feel like this is the secret of all of us book worms. IF A BOOK SUCKS YOU DON’T HAVE TO KEEP READING IT! Even if everyone swears it gets better. Even if you love other things by that author. If it’s not working for you and you’re barely squeaking through and you’ve got other babies sitting on your nightstand waiting to be read just let it go, girl.

 

I hope these tips helped! As always, you can follow me on Goodreads to see what I’ve been reading lately! I’m really loving some oldies but goodies from Jennifer Weiner, James Patterson, and Nora Roberts right now. What about you?

X,

Cristina

  • This is such a helpful post! I’m trying to read one book a month and am already falling behind since I haven’t started a book this month yet…

    Kendal // Life With Kendal

    • Cristina Mandujano

      Definitely try and pick one up this week and use it as some quiet time instead of Netflix or being on your phone! You’ll love it 🙂 Let me know if you need any book recommendations 🙂 X!

  • Ariana

    I set a goal for me to read one book a month this year! I definitely think this will be difficult for this semester because of so many required school readings but I miss reading!

    • Cristina Mandujano

      That’s an awesome goal! Good luck!