Read More Books – What’s Your Reading Style?

Nearly two years ago I drastically changed my relationship with books. Prior to about February 2018 I read very few books in my life. I’d be lucky if I averaged about 2 a year. I read the usual books such as Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit (who hasn’t!?) but beyond that, I was book free.

Then I decided out of the blue that I wanted to change that and add a new habit into my life. A good habit. I’m not one to like physical books and having to hold a book open to the correct page and then having a ton of books build up on a bookshelf. I wanted to ready every day and doing it that way was too much.

So I started by buying The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy which I read entirely on my iPhone. It’s a damn small screen and not easy to read on. But I did it and then read another book after that all on the tiny screen.

I wanted all my reading to be tied seamlessly into the Apple environment because while I know Amazon and the Kindle are extremely popular (for good reason I’m sure), I don’t want multiple devices for everything I do. I don’t want a Kindle for reading books and a tablet for other stuff. And I also don’t want a Kindle tablet because the OS is just ick.

So I had to do something different after reading on my iPhone for a few months.

My Way Of Reading

I wanted something small and light like the Kindle but I wanted it for more than books. That’s why I bought an iPad Mini. It was the perfect device for reading because I could easily hold it in one hand and use it for other things too.

Once I bought the iPad Mini, I was set for reading. I made it my goal to read at least an hour every day. It was challenging to keep track of my reading, though, because the only way I could do it well was through Screen Time.

If you don’t know what Screen Time is, it’s Apple’s method of allowing you to keep track of how much you’re using your screen. I use it also to limit my daughter’s screen time so she’s not on her iPad all day. I also use it so I don’t use Facebook for more than an hour and half each day which lately I haven’t been coming anywhere near.

Tracking reading time with Apple Screen Time.

I would have to go into settings and check on my screen time usage for Books. It was kind of a pain, to say the least. Apple updated the Books app shortly after that to include goals. Yay!

I could now see right in Books how much I had read which makes it easy to make sure I’m reading my hour every day. It even keeps track of running records so I can see how long I’ve been meeting my goal (I’m on 260 days running steak as of this writing).

Apple Books Reading Goals

They even added yearly goals so I can have a goal of how many books I read per year.

I started off at 26 books in 2019 then in 2020 I increased that to 31. I’m not sure where I’ll end up this year. When I bought the iPad to read books my goal for reading was to read one fun book and one business book. I’ve been alternating between the two ever since.

The only time I veer from my fun/business reading cycle is during the holidays when I don’t want to do business.

I’m currently working on a business book right now which is The E-Myth Revisited (also available on Amazon). Many business books are very poorly written but this one actually has a good message. I will write a review of the book as soon as I’m finished in the next few days.

I have three books read in 2021 so far and am working on the fourth. My last book was a personal book which was Americanah (yup, also available on Amazon), an extremely good book.

I have one stipulation for reading books because I’m reading so many. I’m never spending $15 on a book or even $10. I typically look for a good book that is between $.99 and $2.99 at the time I’m ready for it. So, I’m looking for books that are on sale but still high quality.

I’ve had a pretty good track record so far and I’m loving my all electronic method of reading. I have a Book library on my iPad full of the best books that I can access anytime and it continue to grow while never creating clutter or me having to figure out where to store them.

Reading On an iPad

You’d think reading on an iPad would be hard on your eyes but you’re wrong. Only sometimes does it catch a glare and if that happens I just have to tilt it a different angle. Easy!

I like having access to all past and present books on any device too. If I so wishes I could read on my phone exactly where I left off on my iPad. Heck, I could even pick up where I left off on my MacBook Pro which doesn’t seem to comfortable.

Since I’m on a family account too, even better is that any book I have my daughter can download too. That means when she’s old enough she can read Lord of the Rings of which the movies she LOVED.

Whether you use an iPad, iPhone, Kindle, or a real book to read, I encourage you to pick up a book every day and read for at least an hour. It has definitely made me smarter and more aware of the world (maybe not smarter).

Book Review Coming

Part of my plan going forward is to write a brief book review of my most recent read. That’s going to start with The E-Myth Revisited which so far is a pretty good book. You can look for that later this week.

It takes me typically about a week or two to finish a book at my hour a day rate (I’m a slow reader) so there will be two to three book reviews a month. I’m loving my new habit and I think it’s one that everyone should pick up.

2 Comments

  1. Eva Harris on March 1, 2021 at 2:50 am

    Hey! It’s good to know that you are adding a habit of reading books to your daily routine. Setting a goal to read at least an hour every day is nice, but keeping track of it is quite challenging as everyone has their style of reading. Amazing blog, I like the information it contains about tracking time while reading. Keep writing!

    • Nick Leffler on March 1, 2021 at 8:57 am

      Keeping track of it is definitely a challenge. It’s super easy with Apple Books (or other application that helps you keep track) but of course reading on a device isn’t everyone’s ideal. My daughter only likes real books that she reads and we do find it difficult to keep track of how much she actually reads (a lot but probably not enough). Thanks for reading and also thanks for commenting, I appreciate it!

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