Everyone learns from their own mistakes.
Well, not everyone.
Some of us resist learning, even when it stares at us in the face and we make the same bad choices over and over again. But all jokes aside, we all eventually learn from our own mistakes and become the wiser for it. We tend to operate better in the world because we learned through practical lessons and we absorbed the learning for life.
However, sometimes learning from our own mistakes can really slow us down. After all, we cannot afford to keep making mistakes all the time in order to learn. We need a more practical modus operandi. We need to learn from not only our own mistakes but also from those of others. We need to learn fast. Life need not have to necessarily give us a first-hand experience of everything. If we have the necessary receptivity, we can derive a lot of learning by observing the world around us.
Each of us is born here to experience life. We are able to experience it well if we live with awareness in the world. However, even so, we are able to experience only a few dimensions of what life has to offer. Each person lives life from his own center point. Each perspective is thus unique and intriguing. It then makes sense to be able to understand and appreciate the perspective of another and taste a bit of life from their point of view too.
Read Books to Experience Life Fully
That is where the reading habits come in. Through the writings of another, you can experience, understand and appreciate life from another perspective – whether it is fiction or non-fiction that you choose to read. When you read the writings of another, you get the chance to sample life from his point of view. When you are able to delve into another mind-space, you can observe the intricacies of another dimension that exists in this world. It might be radically different from yours or it might be just like yours and so you may be able to relate to it in depth.
In order to experience the world, READ. The days, when people read books simply to gain knowledge are gone. Now, we read books to experience life multi-dimensionally.
Reading helps build a person and a personality. It builds a substantial personality. Reading gives experiences to a person that he may not be capable of gathering on his own. It transports him into another world and into another’s world, from where he may be able to feel and learn something unique. The more we read, the more holistic we become in our approach to life.
The importance of reading cannot be undermined. Reading connects us with millions of other lives that we are not equipped to see and feel. Reading habits are essential for each global citizen. With so much potential knowledge and experiences at our fingertips, it is imperative that we develop good and healthy reading habits.
For someone who is not a natural reader, it is important to find new, innovative techniques to develop a book-reading habit. Let us see what you can do to motivate yourself to read.
Best Ways to Improve Your Reading Habits
1. Build Your Reading Habits
Just like exercise, you must build your reading habits slowly. Especially if you are not an avid reader by nature, you will need to get into this habit gradually. Take up a book that you want to read and read a set of 3-4 pages at a time. Absorb it and let it sink in. If you feel like it, read another set or leave it for the next day. Like exercise, reading habits must become an essential part of your daily routine, if you want to develop the habit of reading books. Reading is your daily fodder for the mind just like exercise is the tonic for the body. When I started training with weights, I started with light weights, few reps in a set, and 3 sets per exercise. Over time, I started doing 4 sets per exercise, heavier weights or sometimes medium weight and more reps. Similarly, just like in exercise, as you find yourself easing into the book, you can increase the number of pages per set for 3-4 to 7-8 or increase the number of sets of 3-4 pages that you read in a day.
2. Identify Your Areas of Interest
For me, some of the compelling topics are fitness, weight training, diet and nutrition, spirituality, black holes, Einstein’s Theory of Relativity, time warp and space. I tend to try to fish out books and articles on such topics and read them voraciously. Each person has a unique set of interests. We all need to know what interests us and then find relevant books. It is good to be well versed with what is happening in your area of interest and to keep abreast of all developments. On a lighter note, such knowledge can be of immense value as conversation starters.
3. Even If You Read a Page a Day, Read It With Awareness
Someone is sharing their knowledge and thoughts with you. A lot goes into writing. Respect the effort. One could write for oneself. But usually, authors who write for readers exhibit a lot of courage. He or she has put himself or herself out there, in the open. They have to be ready to receive whatever the reader community will give them- respect, love, admiration, disrepute or breaking criticism. Respect the courage and the effort.
4. Dedicate a Time and a Place in Your Daily Schedule For Reading
Like exercise and meditation, my daily schedule has some dedicated time for reading. Reading books keeps me tuned to the world around me. A well-written book carries the vibrations of the author as he penned the book and through its sheer intensity, you could be living life from a different point of view for a change. How exciting is that?
5. Carry a Book With You on Vacations
It can be a really beautiful experience reading by the sea, with a salty breeze blowing all around you. Or imagine, sitting with a cup of tea on the terrace, overlooking a valley or mountain, reading a book. I have done so myself several times and some of the most beautiful books that I have read have been the ones on vacations. They still stay with me and so does the landscape, in vivid detail.
6. Read Books to Your Child Everyday
If you are a parent, read a book to your child every day. Kids take to books like fish to water when they see books as a part of their growing years. I have personally read books to my son since he was a 1 year old. We would read at bedtime and at wake-up time. He has grown up into an avid reader and he now has this innate capability of reading and internalizing loads of information in very brief spans of time.
7. Join a Reading Club
Join a reading club where people read and talk about books. It can be a place to meet like-minded people who enjoy sharing on topics that you are yourself interested in. This is also a great way to build a community.
By joining a reading club, you will force yourself to not only read more, but to put yourself around other people who think differently about reading. To be sure, you’ll walk away with different reading habits and perhaps a whole new perspective on reading.
Final Thoughts on Reading Habits
Reading can help you relax and unwind as it has the potential to transport you into another world. It lets you peep into history, mythology, the present, and even the future, depending upon which genre you decide to delve into. Reading habits is a crucial part of your development and you simply cannot ignore the importance of reading books.
So go out and hunt a book for yourself. Imbibe the habit of reading books and live another life. Live another dimension. Experience another point of view and get the most out of your life.
Till next time,