I've heard from a number of my friends that the pandemic has changed their relationship with reading. Either it has sapped their attention span, taken away the majority of their free time, or generally they feel too stressed and anxious to sit down and read in stillness. I know everyone's reality is different, and we're all getting by as best we can, but I wanted to do a post that could offer some support to those who feel this way.
I hope there is something below that resonates with you. I'd also be interested to know if there are any other tips you've found that have helped bring back positive feelings about reading.
Switch Up Genres
Often the days can feel the same one to the next, so breaking out of a reading routine can help create some variety.
Instead of defaulting to your usual genre, try out poetry, a graphic novel, or even a YA romance. Not into a book? Stop reading it; there is no need to slog through another thing in life!
A Sense of Accomplishment
Many things feel overwhelming and stressful right now—reading shouldn't add to it. Reading, and finishing, shorter works can help give you a sense of accomplishment when everything else feels out of your control. There is absolutely no need to tackle War and Peace right now (unless that floats your boat!).
Me Time with a Book
"Me time" may be scarce right now, especially if you are a parent. Instead of adding another thing to your to do list, try including reading in the small moments you may get to yourself:
Listen to audio books in the car or on a walk.
Take a book into the bath.
Trade some phone scrolling time for a few pages of reading.
Read with a Community
Lockdowns, social distancing, and bubbles have left us less connected in the past two years. Use reading to reconnect!
Start a buddy read with a friend where you text about the same novel.
Join one of my virtual book discussions—meet people from all different cities (a rarity in this time of restricted travel) to talk about great literature.