If you’re anything like me, then I’m sure you sometimes struggle to find time to read between work or school or whatever else life decides to throw your way. And whilst it has always been something I’ve found, starting university was definitely the biggest thing that has stopped me from reading as regularly as I used to.
Ever since I started back in September, balancing lectures, revision, a social life and blogging has not been easy, and so today I thought I would share some of the things I have found most useful in keeping me reading. Although they have specifically helped me read more whilst I am studying, I think these tips are quite universal to anyone who needs just a little extra help in getting that good old reading time in.
So here are my top tips for how to still read when you are stressed uni student like me!
This is my biggest tip not just for university, but for anyone who feels like they don’t have enough time to read or is able to regularly sit down and read a physical book. They are the only reason I am still able to read as much as I do, and so I hugely recommend them for absolutely everyone who is even slightly curious about trying them out. I listen to them whilst travelling to and from university, so it not only means that I can now take much more advantage of those times, but also makes sitting on an often packed bus so much more enjoyable than it otherwise would be.
Is it obvious that alot of my reading now takes place whilst I am travelling? Whilst I prefer to listen to an audiobook on the bus, one time when I will physical read is on the train whilst on one of my many regular visits home. So if you also spend a lot of time travelling between places, and don’t get too travel sick, then I highly suggest bringing your book along next time for a much more enjoyable trip.
I can’t tell you how much I look forward to my monthly book club meetings, and so if you are also an avid reader, or even just a casual one, then I highly recommend joining your university’s book club or a local book club, or even creating your own if there isn’t an accessible one near you. Not only is it a chance to talk about all things book related with fellow readers, but it also motivates me to read both more and more diversely, as we often have a category of book to read, or a specific book we will all read that month. For example, our December book was Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, a book I never would have picked up otherwise, and our next meeting will be discussing a LGBTQ+ book we read for the month of February.
Never underestimate those 15 minute breaks you give yourself in between studying, because trust me, they add up. So instead of spending those precious minutes scrolling aimlessly through your phone and staying at yet more screens, why not pick up your current read and get through that next chapter or even just those next 10 pages. Just make sure you don’t get too invested in your book that you forget to go back to your work!
Although I definitely do not believe in reading being a chore, creating a habit of reading at the same time every day is a great way to make sure that you always take some time to relax with a good book even during the busiest of times. Whether it be just before bed like me, or first thing in the morning, just setting aside even half an hour to dive into a book is a great habit to get into. It enables you to always give yourself time away from your studies whilst also keeping you reading.
Finally, this last tip is something that I actually ended up naturally starting to do during my first semester, as I found myself putting down books I wasn’t enjoying rather than dragging myself through them to the end. When you have less time to dedicate to reading, it only makes sense to want to spend as much of that time as possible reading great books rather than ones you just aren’t getting along with.
You don’t even have to give up on a book entirely, but rather just acknowledge that at this time you aren’t in the mood for this book and allowing yourself to put it down before you end up in a reading slump. This is definitely something that I am still working on doing, as it is hard to immediately shift your mind away from wanting to finish every book or series you ever start, but it is also habit that I know I will thankful in the long run, particularly during my time at university.
What are some of your tips for making time to read whilst at university or school? Do you agree with my recommendations, or do you have any more that you swear by?