20 Ways to Develop a Reading Habit

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Reading is an essential and rewarding habit that offers a multitude of benefits. It is a way to expand knowledge, gain new perspectives, and improve cognitive abilities. Reading can be a form of entertainment, escapism, and self-improvement all in one. A strong reading habit has been linked to better academic performance, improved empathy and understanding of others, reduced stress, and increased mental stimulation. Developing a regular reading habit can be challenging, but with the right strategies, anyone can make it a part of their daily routine. In this era of digital distractions, reading provides a much-needed break and an opportunity to disconnect from screens and engage in the joy of learning and exploring new ideas. Whether it is fiction or non-fiction, a good book can transport you to different worlds and help you discover the beauty and complexity of the world we live in.

What is the best time to develop your Reading habit

The best time to develop a reading habit is when it fits into your daily routine and lifestyle. Everyone’s schedule is different, so there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. Some people prefer to read in the morning, while others find it more enjoyable in the evening or before bedtime. Some people may find it easier to read during their commute or breaks, while others may prefer to set aside a dedicated time each day for reading. The key is to find a time that works for you and stick to it consistently. Whatever time you choose, make sure to eliminate distractions, create a comfortable reading space, and commit to making reading a regular part of your routine.

20 Ways to Develop a Reading Habit

  1. Set achievable goals: Start with small goals and gradually increase the number of books you read per month. You can start with a book a month, then two, and so on.
  2. Create a reading list: Make a list of books you want to read and prioritize them based on your interests.
  3. Set aside dedicated reading time: Set a specific time for reading each day or week and stick to it.
  4. Eliminate distractions: Find a quiet place to read and turn off your phone, TV, or any other distractions.
  5. Join a book club: Join a book club or reading group to discuss books with like-minded people and gain different perspectives.
  6. Keep a reading journal: Keep track of the books you read, your thoughts on them, and any lessons or insights gained.
  7. Use audiobooks: Use audiobooks to listen to books while commuting or doing other activities.
  8. Read a variety of genres: Expand your reading experience by reading books from different genres and authors.
  9. Make reading a social activity: Read with friends or family members and discuss the books together.
  10. Read before bed: Reading before bed can help you wind down and improve the quality of your sleep.
  11. Set up a comfortable reading space: Create a cozy reading nook with comfortable seating and good lighting.
  12. Make reading a part of your daily routine: Incorporate reading into your daily routine, such as during your lunch break or while waiting for appointments.
  13. Take advantage of free reading resources: Visit your local library or use free e-book resources to access a wide range of reading materials.
  14. Use reading apps: Use reading apps such as Goodreads to track your reading progress, find new books, and connect with other readers.
  15. Follow reading challenges: Participate in reading challenges such as reading a book from every country or reading a book published in each decade.
  16. Read in short bursts: If you find it challenging to read for long periods, read in short bursts of 10-15 minutes throughout the day.
  17. Reward yourself: Set up a reward system for reaching reading goals, such as treating yourself to a new book or a favorite snack.
  18. Take notes while reading: Take notes while reading to retain information and enhance comprehension.
  19. Read books related to your interests and hobbies: Read books related to your interests and hobbies to deepen your knowledge and gain new insights.
  20. Make reading a lifelong habit: Remember that reading is a lifelong habit that can enrich your life in countless ways. Make it a priority and enjoy the journey of discovery and learning.

Read Also: 26 Personality Traits that are Key to Effective Leadership

Benefits of Developing your Reading Habit

Developing a reading habit offers numerous benefits, including:

  • Mental Stimulation: Reading is an excellent exercise for the brain, promoting cognitive function, and improving memory and concentration.
  • Expanded Vocabulary: Reading exposes us to new words and phrases, broadening our vocabulary and improving our communication skills.
  • Improved Writing Skills: Reading regularly can improve our writing skills by providing exposure to different writing styles and ideas.
  • Enhanced Empathy: Reading fiction can enhance our empathy and understanding of other people’s experiences, cultures, and perspectives.
  • Reduced Stress: Reading can be a form of relaxation and stress relief, offering an escape from the pressures of everyday life.
  • Increased Knowledge: Reading provides us with a wealth of knowledge and information on a wide range of subjects, from history and science to philosophy and literature.
  • Improved Sleep: Reading before bed can improve the quality of our sleep by helping us to unwind and relax.
  • Entertainment: Reading can be an enjoyable form of entertainment, providing us with hours of engaging storytelling and imaginative worlds.
  • Mental Health Benefits: Regular reading has been shown to have positive effects on mental health, including reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety.
  • Better Academic Performance: Reading regularly has been linked to better academic performance, particularly in areas such as reading comprehension and critical thinking skills.

In short, developing a reading habit can enhance our personal growth and well-being, providing us with a lifelong source of pleasure, knowledge, and self-improvement.

18 Books to Read to Develop a Reading Habit

  1. “The Power of Habit” by Charles Duhigg: This book explains how habits are formed and how to create new ones, including the habit of reading regularly.
  2. “Atomic Habits” by James Clear: This book provides practical advice on how to build habits that stick, including tips for reading more consistently.
  3. “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen Covey: This classic self-help book teaches readers how to develop habits that lead to personal and professional success.
  4. “The Miracle Morning” by Hal Elrod: This book outlines a morning routine designed to help readers start their day with energy and focus, including time for reading.
  5. “The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz: This short but powerful book offers practical wisdom for living a happier, more fulfilling life, including the importance of reading and learning.
  6. “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho: This best-selling novel is a tale of self-discovery and following your dreams, which may inspire readers to continue learning and growing through reading.
  7. “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield: This book is a guide to overcoming creative blocks and cultivating discipline, which may be helpful for developing a regular reading habit.
  8. “How to Read a Book” by Mortimer Adler: This classic guide to reading explains how to approach different types of books and how to get the most out of reading.
  9. “Reading Like a Writer” by Francine Prose: This book teaches readers how to read critically and thoughtfully, which may help them engage more deeply with the books they read.
  10. “The Reading Mind” by Daniel T. Willingham: This book offers insights from cognitive science on how our brains process information while reading, which may help readers understand how to read more effectively.
  11. “The End of Your Life Book Club” by Will Schwalbe: This memoir chronicles the author’s experience reading and discussing books with his mother during her cancer treatment, which may inspire readers to prioritize reading as a way to connect with others.
  12. “The Book Whisperer” by Donalyn Miller: This book is a guide for teachers and parents on how to encourage children to develop a love of reading, which may be helpful for adults looking to develop their own reading habit.
  13. “The Well-Educated Mind” by Susan Wise Bauer: This book is a guide to reading the classics and developing a well-rounded education, which may inspire readers to read more widely and diversely.
  14. “The Art of Reading” by Damon Young: This book is a philosophical exploration of the joys and challenges of reading, which may help readers appreciate the value of reading in their lives.
  15. “Why Read?” by Mark Edmundson: This book is a defense of the importance of reading in a world that often values efficiency and productivity over deeper reflection, which may encourage readers to prioritize reading in their own lives.
  16. “The Read-Aloud Handbook” by Jim Trelease: This book is a guide for parents and educators on the benefits of reading aloud to children, and how to choose and share books effectively. It can inspire adults to make reading a regular part of their family or classroom routines, and to rediscover the joy of reading aloud.
  17. “Bird by Bird” by Anne Lamott: This book is a classic guide to writing and creativity, but it also emphasizes the importance of reading and how it can help writers improve their craft. Lamott’s humor and wisdom can motivate readers to prioritize reading as a way to spark their own creativity and develop their writing skills.
  18. “The Library Book” by Susan Orlean: This book is a love letter to libraries, and explores the history, mystery, and magic of these vital community resources. It can inspire readers to visit their local library more often, to explore new books and genres, and to appreciate the many ways that libraries support reading and learning.


In conclusion, developing a reading habit is an excellent way to improve our mental and emotional well-being, expand our knowledge, and enrich our lives. Reading regularly can enhance our cognitive function, boost our empathy and understanding of others, reduce stress, and offer a source of entertainment and escapism. By incorporating reading into our daily routine, setting achievable goals, and utilizing various strategies, we can make reading a lifelong habit and enjoy the countless benefits it offers. So pick up a book and start reading today – your mind and soul will thank you for it.


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