As John Dryden an english poet has said,
” We first make our habits and then our habits make us.”
With the advent of technology and the internet, the world has become small, there are no boundaries anymore, everything and anything has become possible. It is so easy to access a summary of a story or a book or to watch a documentary or movie based on it or to listen to the story via audios. The need for developing the habit of reading at this age increases simultaneously. Reading a book, an article or a page of a magazine every day is an exercise that helps us to strengthen our cognitive skills.
Let us learn how in five simple ways we can develop the habit of reading.
The foremost challenge is to decide what to read. Generally people enter books stores and get anxious at the site of piles of books. Do not pick a thick, heavy read. If you have never ever finished an entire novel in your life yet, then start with children fiction or detective fiction.
Children fiction is an easy read genre. The simple sentence structure, a straight story plot incites interest of the reader. It urges them to read more. Also, since it is usually small or short, the text gets over at an early pace. The satisfaction of finish reading a book motivates the reader.
The genre of detective fiction, for example, books by Enid Blyton are the perfect options, to begin with. Enid Blyton’s books are usually about mysteries solved by children witth detective skills. Agatha Christie’s novels are the gems of this genre. Detective fiction is not as easy as children’s fiction. It is comparatively interesting. It challenges the problem-solving skills of the readers and enhances their critical thinking abilities.
Another important point to remember is while choosing a book keep in view your grasp on the language. For example if your grasp on the language is weak then select the books that have been written by an author from your native land and has contextual similarities. Reading the book written by a foreign writer and of a foreign, unfamiliar context might lead to a loss in interest and can discourage the reader from making any progress.
You don’t have to rush to the dictionary every time you encounter a difficult word while reading. Meanings are contextual, sometimes we don’t know the meaning of the word but we still can grasp what the sentence means.
Read, understand and look for the meanings later. If you want to remember what the word means, make a sentence using it and learn it if you can. Other ways are to link it to an incident or an anecdote.
Take baby steps. In order to develop this habit begins with reading a page every day and gradually increase the number of pages you read. Consistency is the key to success. A page a day is a convenient start. It will be easy to adjust or fit into your daily routine.
As practice might not make you perfect but it will make you habitual. Accomplishing the set goals as mentioned earlier in the article will increase interest and boosts self-confidence.
F. Scott Fitzgerald, an american novelist has said,
“That is part of the beauty of all literature. You discover that your longings are universal longings, that you’re not lonely and isolated from anyone. You belong.”
Indeed the stories we read are hidden somewhere in or around us. This is what makes reading interesting, we realize that we are not alone, we share our dilemmas, our passions, and our beliefs. It is obvious that the literature that we read is not written in isolation. Hence, we get to learn a lot about historical incidents through the stories we read. They give it a psychological insight that history or political science books fail to do. We understand what happened and what was it consequences better than we did from just facts. Thus, it has been rightly said that “literature is the mirror of society”.
Sharing what you know further increases the knowledge Discuss what you read with your friends and family. Start your own book club or join an existing one. It will help you enhance other skills other than just reading. Book clubs organize discussions on books, characters, and themes. It is a viable option to receive suggestions from varied genres, to explore the works of various writers, and to find your interest areas.
These were the five ways that can generally help in developing the habit of reading only if you follow with consistency and conviction.