An appropriate subtitle for this post would be: Adulthood has robbed me of reading.
When I was younger (and I’m not that old now), I could tear through a book a week, sometimes two. Nearly all of my free time was devoted to curling up in a chair or my bed to read.
I still love to read, but as work and other obligations have impeded on the amount of free time I have, I’m not able to get through books as quickly as I would like.
To that end, in January, I made a New Year’s resolution to find at least 10 minutes a day to read something that was not related to work. I’ve managed to do that more days than I haven’t, but not as many days as I would have liked.
I try and read on my lunch break at work, but when there are coworkers in the break room too, reading can be construed as a little anti-social. I try and read before bed every night, but sometimes, my eyes are simply too tired to do anything besides sleep.
I had set another goal for the year. My aim was to read 50 books during the course of the year. I would have to finish a book every 2-3 days to achieve that at this point. I knew the goal was lofty when I set it, but I was hoping to make more progress than I have thus far. (There is still a month to go on that goal…)
I would propose a designated reading time. The benefits of reading a good book, or honestly anything you enjoy whether that’s a magazine or web article, have been documented. Reading increases vocabulary and opens us up to new world views. It gives us new ideas and new ways to think about ideas we already had.
Children get naptimes when they are young, why not have a designated half hour of the day to read for adults (perhaps during that naptime…)? In some cultures, an afternoon nap, commonly called a siesta, is a staple. Why not implement that but for reading? For that half hour, we all work on improving ourselves through a book. It will allow us to clear our minds and relax for 30 minutes before heading back into a stressful work environment.
It wouldn’t even need to be every day. Getting people in the habit of reading is a good thing. The literacy rates in the United States are far too low for a country that claims to be one of the most developed in the world.
Not everyone likes reading or is good at it. We all have room for improvement with certain skills in our lives. (I could use some improvement in math, which seems to have seeped out of my brain since I finished school.)
Do you support the idea of a designated reading time for adults? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.