Several people have asked me how I manage to read one book every week. I’m sure some of them think I don’t work! What I do is use pockets of time throughout the day. These pockets of time can be used to make small but steady steps towards anything you want to do but can’t seem to make time for.
Here are the 10 pockets of time that you can reclaim
1. Waiting time
The moment you have to wait for anything, whip that book out and start reading. You may manage only three sentences, but the sentences add up. Usually you’ll manage quite a few pages while waiting.
2. The work commute
I’m sure you’ve seen people reading on a bus or train. Even if you commute by car, audio books are easily available today. If your commute is only 5 minutes each way, that’s 50 minutes a week. You’ll find 2,600 minutes a year, enough time for a few books.
3. TV commercials
In the same way, if you use just one minute a day of commercial time, you would have added 365 minutes to your day. That’s more than 6 hours a year of ‘found’ time. You can certainly do something worthwhile in 6 hours.
4. Eating alone
You don’t have to be alone. Books are some of my best lunchtime companions. They’re informative, funny, and don’t argue. Even a short lunch will give you 15-30 minutes a day to pursue that goal.
5. Boiling water or cooking
I find it amusing to see people watching a kettle or pot. Use a timer instead, and free yourself to read or do something else for a few minutes. Personally I read next to the stove, and use the sound of sizzling as my alarm to pay attention to the food!
6. Downloading webpages
Staring at the computer screen isn’t going to make that page load any faster. Since there’s nothing to read on the screen for a few seconds, read a few sentences of your book instead.
7. In the toilet
Okay, use some discretion here. It may not always be appropriate but if it’s clean and you’re there for some time, go ahead. Imagine the reading you’ll get done over a lifetime!
8. Attending meetings
Get there slightly early and read a little while waiting for the rest. Also, scan a few sentences during lulls when people are getting organised and there’s no real discussion going on.
9. During exercise
Audio books are the way to go here. Download these into your phone or media player and you’ll be amazed how quickly the time flies. Exercising will be less tedious, and you’ll be brawnier and brainier.
10. Before sleeping
The few minutes you take to fall asleep can be used to read instead of staring at the ceiling. Also, your brain remembers best what you put into it during the 45 minutes before you sleep.
Can you find any of these pockets of time?
Use these pockets of time in your day, and you’ll be amazed at how much time you actually have. They say you can get a university education by reading one hour a day for five years. You can also write the book you’ve always wanted to. And you don’t even have to give up anything you’re doing now. You just have to reclaim those lost minutes.