One Habit a Month: Establish a Reading Routine

“Good habits, once established, are just as hard to break as are bad habits.”  – Robert Puller

I am good at making detailed schedules. I am not so good at following them.

However, basic routines help me to fit the important things, like reading to my children, into the fabric of my day.

Each month this year I am working on one new habit. (I would love to have you join me!)

In June, my goal is to establish a routine for personal reading. My reading goals for this summer are ambitious (at least for me) but if I work even 30 minutes of reading into each day, I should be able to finish them (or at least get close!)

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“You don’t have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them,” said Ray Bradbury.

As I spend more time online, I find myself reading in smaller chunks. A blog post here, half an article there and soon my reading time is over and I haven’t really concentrated on following complicated argument or reading an entire book.

It takes a lot more discipline to read a long, old book like  Confessions by Augustine or Josephus’ History than most online reading.

Much as I love reading blog posts (and writing them!) and love the easy accessibility of answers to my questions, once I’ve carefully selected a book to read, I don’t want to let the difficulty keep me from persevering.

Having a set time each day that is reserved for reading will motivate me to keep going and hopefully (to carry Lewis’ argument, On the Reading of Old Books, a little farther) balance my love for reading 500 word posts.

[Speaking of summer reading, last week I finished two books off my listI Dared to Call Him Father and Grow Your Home While Growing Your Blog (Review coming soon!)]

What about you? Are you working on any new habits? How do you fit in time to read? 

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  1. says

    Hi Anna!
    I have enjoyed reading your blog for a while now. It is very inspiring, (especially the series of posts that you wrote) and I appreciate everything you post so much.

    Your habit this month is one I need to work on, too. I have a bad habit of starting books and not finishing them. You are right – reading through one book of depth and purpose is far better than just reading bits and pieces here and there.
    Thanks for posting on this!
    ~ Brooke

    • anna says

      Thanks so much for commenting Brooke! It’s so fun to know that real life friends are reading my blog. 🙂 I just checked out your blog and love it too. I hope to try those chocolate chip cookies soon!

  2. Staci says

    I love it! And I completely agree… It is rare for a blog to challenge me to the level of 200-300 page book. I know how much I love reading for 30 minutes before bed time, so it is a shame when lack of self-control keeps me on the internet longer than I want to be. Thanks for this challenge. As for reading… my recent reads that I have enjoyed are:

    Radical Hospitality: Benedict’s Way of Love – by Daniel Homan and Pratt Lonni Collins (very challenging to go beyond opening your home to the more comfortable neighbors and friends and to seek out the stranger; to look to someone’s heart and not merely the external)

    The Help – by Kathryn Stockett (gripping! I read it in 2-3 days of parenting neglect 😉

    Hints on Child Training: A Book That’s Been Helping Parents Like You…for More Than 100 Years – by Henry Clay Trumbull (Very good! Easily divided into topical chapters and I found most points true, practical and challenging)

    Christ for Real – by Charles Price (genuinely life-changing – but that may include more factors than just the book)

    Next on the list:

    A book about Susanna Wesley and…….. Oh, how to choose!!?? Probably One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp (seeing as hers is one blog that DOES challenge me consistently.)

    • anna says

      “gripping! I read it in 2-3 days of parenting neglect” Haha! That is why I avoid novels like the plague. IF I start one, I know that I will think of little else until it’s done.

      Your booklist looks great. I may to borrow some suggestions for this fall. I’m really loving digging into real books more!

  3. says

    A reading habit, hmm, I like that. 🙂 But then I love reading anyway. But I’ve been in a rut of reading light fiction for a while. (I think all the busyness had something to do with it.) But now that we are home for the rest of the month, I’m going to read at least one history or more challenging book after each fiction I read this month. 🙂 Now I can’t wait to get started because I do love to read. 😉 Did I mention that before? Let’s just hope it doesn’t interfere with my writing!

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