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How to Rekindle Your Love for Reading After a Hiatus: A Step-by-Step Guide

We've all been there—life gets busy, work piles up, and before you know it, the books on your bedside table are gathering dust. Reading can be an immensely rewarding experience, offering relaxation, wisdom, and a gateway to different worlds. 

If you've found yourself in a reading rut, this guide is for you. We'll go through step-by-step strategies to help you get back into the swing of things and rediscover your love for reading.

Recognize the Barriers

The first step in resuming your reading habit is identifying what stopped you in the first place. Was it a demanding job? A busy home life? Or perhaps you were simply overwhelmed by the sheer number of books on your TBR (To Be Read) list? Recognizing these barriers helps you devise strategies to overcome them.

Start Small

If you haven't read in a while, it can be intimidating to start with a hefty tome. Ease back into your habit by reading shorter pieces—think short stories, novellas, or even long-form articles. This can also help you rediscover what you enjoy in a narrative without committing to a longer work.

Set Achievable Goals

Setting goals can provide a sense of direction and accomplishment. Start with small, achievable objectives like reading for 20 minutes before bed or finishing a chapter each weekend. As you become more comfortable, you can increase these goals to align with your pace and interest.

Choose Books Wisely

The joy of reading often comes from connecting with a story, so start with genres or authors you already love. If you've been out of the reading loop for a while, you might not want to dive into a complex mystery or heavy historical read. Choose something lighter to get you going—a heartwarming romcom or a suspenseful thriller with a straightforward plot could be excellent picks.

Create a Reading Environment

Your surroundings can greatly affect your ability to concentrate. Create a comfortable reading environment that's free from distractions. Whether it's a cozy corner with a reading lamp or a bench in a quiet park, make your reading space as inviting as possible.

Join a Community

Reading doesn't have to be a solitary activity. Joining a book club or following a reading challenge online can provide motivation and social interaction. It gives you people to share your thoughts and experiences with and can even introduce you to books you might not have picked up otherwise.

Don't Be Too Hard On Yourself

It's important to remember that it's not a race. You might find that you're reading more slowly than you used to, or that it takes longer to get engrossed in a story. That's okay! The aim is to rekindle your love for reading, not to set a speed record.

I had taken a long break from reading while studying to become a CPA. A coworker was cleaning out her office one day and asked if I’d like to read Turning Angel, a thriller by Greg Iles. It’s hard to believe this now, but I had never read a thriller before then, so I gratefully accepted the book. I was hooked on Greg’s books from then on. 

Getting back into reading after a long break might seem daunting, but it's entirely doable. By setting achievable goals, choosing the right books, and creating a conducive reading environment, you can rediscover the joy that comes from getting lost in a good book. So why wait? Your next favorite story is out there, waiting for you to turn the page.

Free Books to Get You Back Into the Reading Groove

How to Rekindle Your Love for Reading After a Hiatus: A Step-by-Step Guide