“The man who doesn’t read hasn’t any advantage over the man who can’t read” – Mark Twain
When I tell people I read 100+ books a year, I’m often greeted with blank stares. I’ve now accomplished this for four years straight, so I figured it’s time to reveal how I’ve accomplished this goal and how I plan to continue accomplishing it until I reach my ‘Journey’ of reading 1,000 books over 10 years. Without further ado, here are the 5 steps you can implement, today, that will have you reading 25, 50, and even 100+ books a year in no time.
1. Set a goal and start a reading list
The first step you should take is set a goal for the next month, or go for gold and set your target reading goal for the year ahead. I aim to read 100 books a year, and broken down that’s about 8 1/3 books a month. If you want to start lower, say 25 books a year- that’s only two books a month and will be entirely achievable for you, especially as you implement the remaining 4 steps in this post. Once you have a number set and a time frame, it’s time to hone in and create a wishlist of books you want to read. For keeping track of these books, I find nothing is better than Amazon.com’s wishlist functionality. You’ll never have to worry about losing the name of an interesting book once you start logging them with your wishlist. Amazon’s book recommendations are also very on point based and based on your previous book purchases, so they open you up to many new and exciting authors!
2. Read frequently and read books your interested in
I read at least 20-30 pages a day and I do it just about every day. On the weekends I read even more just because I have more free time to do so. One of the keys to reading more is to actually enjoy what you’re reading. In order to do this ,you have to find books about topics you’re interested in. Personally I’ve always been interested in personal growth and business books, but I also try to sprinkle some fiction books in here and there to break up my habit of sticking mostly with non-fiction books. Once you start find books you enjoy, you unconsciously want to read more- and that is when you’ll start to surprise people with how much you read. Start off with a topic that interests you, read a few of the 5 star and 1 or 2 start reviews on Amazon, and grab yourself a few books to start. While you’re looking for books to add, why not start with one of my favorites?
3. Listen to Audiobooks on your commute, my choice is Audible.com
Once you’ve begun reading regular paperback or digital books, there’s still another option for increasing your yearly book count. I can’t speak more highly of audio books, and Audible.com, for helping in this area. Audio books have transformed my commute from a boring, mindless task into a way of expanding and enriching my mind while driving. Audio books are anywhere from 5 hours to 20 or 30 hours long and packed with information, with the average book I listen to having been around 10-15 hours. In Audible, you’re able to listen at 1.5x or 2x normal speed, so I’ve become adapted to 2x speed and have been able to turn 10 hour books into 5 hour books. Using audible, I am able to finish an additional one or two books a week towards my total annual reading goal, and it’s pretty much effortless. You have to be particularly careful, though, to focus while listening to audio books, because you may find yourself drifting away from the book only to refocus 30 minutes later! 🙂
4. Keep a list of short, one or two day reads to supplement your longer books
On thing I realized this year is that not all of the books have to be long to reach your goal. I consider a normal book to be around 200-300 pages, but there are a ton of great books out there, including classics, that are 100 pages or less. While you’re reading one book that is longer, supplement your total goal count by reading a few short ones here and there. I try to read one short book each week in addition to my other readings. If a book is 90-100 pages with a lot of white space, you can pretty much finish it in a day. I personally tend to read these on my phone’s kindle app throughout the week while waiting in line at the chiropractor’s office or for someone to arrive. Here are a few great, short books below:
5. Keep track of your reading habits, build momentum, and watch for incremental improvements.
Once you’ve set your goals, started reading books you’re interested in, added a few audiobooks to your list, and found a few quick reads to boot- it’s time to organize all of this information. To keep track of the books you’ve already finished and/or are currently reading, I find GoodReads.com to be fantastic and I recommend it to everybody. To keep on pace with my annual goal, I create a bookshelf for each year, such as ‘Read-in-2015’ and more recently ‘Read-in-2016’. When I start a book, I add it to my ‘currently reading’ list and as soon as I’m finished I head back to mark it as ‘Read’. There’s something really pleasing about opening the GoodReads app after you’ve finished a book and clicking that ‘Read’ button. This feeling alone may get you hooked! You can also add friends on GoodReads, see reviews and ratings, comment on your friends reads, and find book recommendations based on your Shelves.
That’s all! With the above 5 steps you now hold the tools to reading 100+ books a year and increasing your self-education to new levels. Start using the tips above by visiting Audible.com and Amazon now.
Here Are Some Great Books To Get You Started:
-Anthony From AuthenticGrowth.com