We’ve all been there; you want to sit down with a book and relax but somehow, you’re just lacking the drive to. You feel unmotivated to read and nothing seems exciting anymore. You have a look at your bookshelf and there’s so many books that you’ve been meaning to read for ages, but you just can’t bring yourself to. If you’re feeling like this, chances are you’re in a reading slump.
Most readers will go through this at some point, even I experience them, and I love reading. With the current situation around the world, many people are returning to their books. I know many people (myself included) who have set reading goals at the moment. But like most things, we start strong but eventually the excitement runs out and you get into a reading slump. Thankfully they’re not impossible to overcome and I compiled a list of my favourite ways to get out of a reading slump.
If you’re struggling to get your motivation back for reading, give these a go and see if they help.
Start easy, start small
A lot of people make the mistake of selecting the wrong type of book when they’re trying to get out of a reading slump. If you’re struggling with reading maybe don’t pick up a 600-page novel with complex world building. Chances are it’ll overwhelm you and you’ll be far less likely to stick with it and finish it. The general rule is the bigger and more complex the book the harder it’ll be to get into.
Try to find a smaller and simpler book, that way you’re less likely to feel overwhelmed. Not only will this type of book be easy to get into, but you’re likely to finish it quicker and have the satisfaction of finishing it far sooner what can inspire you to pick up another book.
Try a new genre
There’s a possibility that you’re bored with what you’re reading and that’s why you’re in a bit of a dry period. I’m a lover of all things fantasy related, it’s a genre that I keep going back to time and time again. But after reading it pretty much non-stop for a year, I started to get bored with it. I felt uninspired to pick up a book because I wasn’t really reading anything new or exciting.
To get around this I made the decision to step back from fantasy and swap it for non-fiction. I’d never cared for non-fiction but rather surprisingly I found that once I’d given it a chance, I really enjoyed it. Very soon I was back devouring books at my normal pace.
Pick up something different and you might find you really enjoy it.
Re-read books you enjoyed
Do you have an all time favourite book? Going back to a book you enjoyed can rekindle your passion for reading. I find this helps me because the story is familiar. I know what to expect and as a result it’s an easy, relaxing read. I don’t get overwhelmed and I can get into the habit of picking up a book again.
Join a book club
Joining a book club can really get you excited about reading again. There’s nothing better than sitting down with a bunch of like-minded people and fan girling about a book you’ve just read… or moaning about it if you didn’t enjoy it.
Back at home my local book club was held at the bookshop in town. Understandably not everyone can make it to a physical organised book club (especially with the current situation) but there are still ways of joining a book club. The Internet can be your best friend in this as you can join an online club. Or you can start up a small one with your friends, family or even your work colleagues.
I think book clubs are great because they can keep you accountable. They also let you bounce your excitement off other people.
Take a break from reading
Ok, I know this sounds counter-productive but it’s worth questioning why you’re in a reading slump to begin with. If you’ve tried everything above and you’re still not getting back into the swing of reading, it might be worth asking yourself if you really want to be reading.
Sometimes we want to read, but we don’t really want to be reading. This happens to me now and then and it’s totally normal. I think it’d be nice to pick up a book, but my brain is just too tired to. Some days you’ve been working at full capacity, you’re stressed and you’re tired. Sure, it’d be nice to pick up a book, but in those moments your brain just can’t take in any more information. In these moments just let yourself rest, don’t force yourself to read. Also, if you don’t want to take a complete break from reading you can always try an audio book for a bit. They can be a little less taxing on your brain.
I hope you’ve found this useful. If you have any more idea of how to get out of a reading slump, then feel free to share them in the comments.
Happy reading all!