We’ve all been there.
Reading, reading, reading, and then life takes over, we put our books on the shelves, and find it impossible to dive back in. I can say that I’ve gone through this wave many times before! And so I’d like to give you a few tips to get you out of that reading slump.
Number One: Switch Genres
This one always works for me! More often than not, we have become bored with the genre we are reading and that’s what is preventing us from picking up another book. My genre obsessions go in waves. I can become obsessed with spiritual non-fiction and that’s all I buy, read, look at, etc. Suddenly, I’m back into my Young Adult craze and I’m immersing myself in fiction worlds that give me an escape. Then things get serious, and I slide back into my Hemingway (and friends) mood. A genre switch always gets the reading bug biting. Give it a shot.
Number Two: Pick Up Something Small & Simple
Far too often, we see those daunting, thick books on our shelves or the content-heavy non-fiction on our desk and we groan at the thought of starting them. There is nothing shameful or less valuable in a bubblegum book, especially if it gets you back into the reading groove! Pick up a thin book you’ll finish in one sitting or two days time. Let it be mindless if it brings you back into the flow of reading. Don’t feel guilty about the content or the pages, and just enjoy being with a book in your hands, again.
Number Three: Bookstagram Inspo
There is nothing that puts me more in the book mood than #bookstagram. It’s a part of Instagram that is filled with books! Book photos, shelf photos, reading recommendations, book reviews. The content is often beautiful and stirs a bit of wonder in your spirit, pushing you back into the book world without hesitation. Just check out the hashtag for yourself, and you’ll see; you’ll be reading in no time!
Number Four: Technology Limitations
One of the biggest factors interrupting pure, quiet reading time is technology and social media. Even my mother used to be a big reader, but now she’s a big ‘app-er’ (sorry for calling you out, ma!). When we are endlessly scrolling, endlessly playing video games, or streaming Netflix shows, we are engaging in mindless activities that take away from brain growth and expansion opportunities. It’s hard not to be tempted, but getting an App or setting a timer on your phone that encourages you to put it down or be more aware of how much time has been wasted could very well end up leading to more books read! Give it a shot.
Number Five: Speak to a Pro
Asking a person working in a bookshop or a librarian in a library what book they would recommend to get you out of a slump is never a bad idea! By telling them your favourite books and genres, and letting them know you’re looking for something simple to get the gears started again, they can guide you to exactly what you need.
If you’re ever looking for someone to help you out with this, don’t hesitate to reach out! As a Masters of Library and Information Studies graduate, this is literally the kind of work I did in some of the courses in my program. I will always find exactly what you need to get you out of the slump. If you can’t get to a bookshop and can’t get a hold of me, you could even as a friend what they’re reading; it never hurts!
Number Six: Read an Old Favourite
I am a very passionate re-reader and there is nothing I promote more than going back to a favourite book and discovering new aspects of the story that you may have missed in the first round! And the bonus with going back to something you’ve already read is that you know what to expect and your eyes will scan the content quicker, leading to a faster finish, which culminates in feeling accomplished and wanting to tackle the next book. A re-read is never a bad idea.
Number Seven: Don’t Rush it
So you’re in a slump, so what? If you make reading feel like work, you’ll never want to pick up another book and enjoy it. Watch a movie that’s based on a book, instead. Enjoy the company of others. Go walk through a bookshop without the temptation to buy and just cherish the moment. Don’t blame yourself, don’t rush your need to step away from reading for a bit (there is nothing wrong with that). “This too shall pass,” and you’ll be back to reading in no-time.
Did I miss one of your favourite ways for getting out of a reading slump? Let me know in the comments – and don’t hesitate to reach out if you need a book recommendation!