35 Tactics That Help Me Read 2 Hrs/Day (+ 4 Causes of Infrequent Reading)

Want to read more books this year? You’ve come to the right place. 

Over the last four years I’ve been on nothing short of an all-out crusade to become a better and more consistent reader. 

In 2019, I was probably reading books for about 30 minutes per day on average. Now I’m up to around 2 hours per day (though, I’m far from 100% here).

In this process of self-transformation, I’ve learned a lot of tactics for getting myself to read more often, and I’ve encountered a lot of nasty beliefs and underlying mental hang ups that were holding me back from reading prolifically and consistently. 

The tactics I deployed, and that I’ll share today, were mostly antidotes to these underlying issues (e.g., reading during lunch solved my perceived lack of time issue). 

Before the tips, I want to address a problem with how people generally go about solving their issue of not reading as many books as they want to. 

My Problem With Answers to How Do I Read More Books?

I think when people answer the question “how do I read more books?” they usually just throw a bunch of tips at you. 

I’m not sure how helpful that is. 

If someone went to a doctor and said, “how can I exercise more often?” a good doctor would probably begin by asking them if they had any underlying pain, anxieties, or beliefs preventing them from doing their exercise. 

Then, if the patient said, “I just feel like I don’t have enough time,” the doctor would give them a solution tailored to that specific issue. They’d say “well then just run for 20 minutes before work.”

If the patient then said, “well is that really going to do anything?” the doctor will note this person is also suffering from misinformation, and they’ll say, “Hey, see this guy, that’s my uncle.” 

Doc pulls up a picture of a healthy-looking shirtless man. “He’s 72 and he runs 20 minutes per day. Has been for decades. See those abs?” 

That said, I want to start this tip list by reviewing the major causes of low reading rates, low hours per day, and then go over 35 ways to cure them and thus help you reach your full potential as a reader.

4 Things Likely Stopping You From Reading More Books

Here are the four main causes that might be holding you back from reading. 

  • Lack of Motivation: This usually occurs when someone doesn’t understand the benefits of reading, doubts their ability to read, overestimates how often they need to read to get those benefits, or can’t identify the payoffs in their life. They may also lack accountability. 
  • Perceived Lack of Time: Sometimes people just think they have less time in their day for reading than they actually do. Typically, they’re just not making reading a priority. 
  • Fear, Anxiety, & Perfectionism: I’ve struggled a lot with this one. Sometimes I worry that if I don’t read a book like a scholar would, and remember everything, then what’s the point of even reading it? Some might also worry they’re bad readers. This can be solved. 
  • Treating Reading Like a Chore: Sometimes people make their reading so structured that it can become to feel like a chore. One has to remember that reading is fun. It’s a chance to explore what excites and interests you. There are ways to rediscover this. 

Try identifying which cause resonates most with you and then using some of those tactics. 

Alright, now that we know the main things that hold people back from reading consistently, let’s go over some tips for overcoming each one. 

Quick Note: You may have noticed I used hours rather than the number of books. I avoid using the number metric because quality reading time is more important to me than the quantity. I don’t want to be what Alexander Pope calls “book-full blockheads.” It sounds rather uncomfortable. 

14 Tips for People Who Lack the Motivation to Read

Things like creating a reading plan, tracking your page counts, noting benefits, and finding inspiration will help you overcome the problem of a lack of motivation.

Read on for 14 methods I’ve used to help me gain motivation to read more books. 

Create a Reading Plan

Every December I create an annual reading plan.

In this document, I define 4-7 reading goals and then list the books I want to read to achieve them. 

I also write the reasons for tackling these goals. Usually my “why” corresponds to some longer self-education mission. For instance, I’m reading books on the civil war as part of my long-term quest to become well-read in US history. 

To illustrate a reading plan, this year I’m reading: 

  • 9 classic novels.
  • 6 humor novels.
  • 8 contemporary novels. 
  • 6-8 books on nature/solitude. 
  • 3 books by Nietzsche. 
  • 5-6 books on the Civil War.
  • Read 4 books on self-education / learning. 

This plan accounts for about half the books I’ll read this year. I build in plenty of flexibility so I have the freedom to read random books I come across in a bookstore or that are recommended to me by a friend.  

Even if the plan evolves over the course of the year, the act of taking time to think about what I want to read this upcoming year leaves a lasting impression on me. 

It’s like the time I spent envisioning my year of reading has created an algorithm in my brain that reminds me of how important it is to do my reading whenever I feel lazy. 

Perhaps that’s why Eisenhower said “plans are nothing; planning is everything.” 

Also, having my goals in a document where I can easily refer to them allows me to reacquaint myself with my goals whenever I’m feeling confused about what to read. 

Do an Annual Reading Review 

At the end of the year, review all the books you read and identify the 5 that left the biggest impression on you. 

Then write up five brief summaries of your major takeaways or lessons from each book. 

This will remind you of how time spent reading was time well spent. It’ll also give you a chance to congratulate yourself for all that you’ve read and learned.  

I did this recently and was shocked to see all the great books I had read and how much they’d changed me for the better. 

Here’s what I wrote for my favorite book of the year:

With the benefits of my reading right there in front of me, I was even more excited to start tackling this year’s reading plan. 

Track Your Pages Read in a Daily Reading Log

Remember the adage “you can’t improve what you don’t track”? 

This doesn’t just apply to dieting and personal finance. It also works for reading. 

When you see at the end of each day how many pages you’ve read, you can tell whether you’re on track or missing the mark, and then you can make adjustments to your strategy accordingly. 

In a notebook or journal, simply jot down what you read and the number of pages. To take it a step further you could also say one thing you loved most about the book.

If you read multiple books, add the pages you read of each into a total sum, and circle that number in your log. 

Check out ParkNotes’ video on keeping a reading log to form a daily habit of reading:

This works best if you have a daily page count goal, say 20 pages per day, and then see if you reached it. 

Build Reading Systems

I have several different reading systems I use to read books. 

I find that taking a systematic approach to reading relieves doubt about my ability to achieve the goal I want to achieve in reading the book. 

If you trust the process, you do the process.  

By the way, sometimes I don’t use a system at all. Sometimes I just read the book and drift away into another world. No one can nor should do everything productively. 

When I do use a system though, the system I choose depends on the genre and my purpose for reading the book.  

Let’s say that I’m reading a work of classic literature and my goal is to deeply read the book, so that I can learn something profound about human nature and the craft of writing in the process. 

Then I’ll use my system for reading classic novels, which I keep in my reading plan document, below — see While Reading and After Reading: 

This differs from the system I use to read non-fiction. For a history book I’m reading to become a relative expert on the topic, I might jot down three takeaways from each section and then review those notes after reading and transfer the most important ones into a history notebook. 

You can use other peoples’ systems but I advise instead using them as inspiration to create ones for yourself that help you reach your specific goals and don’t feel like a chore. 

Set Reading Goals That Excite You

Make some reading quests with outcomes that get you excited to pick up a book and continue on your journey of self-education. 

Here are some of my current long-term reading quests:

Consider making these quests support your long-term life or career goals. 

For example, if you wanted to become a political commentator one day, you might decide to read 20 of the most important works of political commentary ever written, as well as 10 works of political philosophy. 

If you wanted to improve as a marketer or physician, you might read books on those topics. 

Or maybe you just want to be well-read in the classics of Western civilization so you can have more intelligent conversations. 

Then you can’t go wrong with the lists in my favorite book on classical education, The Well Educated Mind, which will also teach you how to read books like a scholar. 

Need some goal ideas? Read: 10 unique reading goals for your reading plan

Find a Reading Buddy 

Having a reading buddy who you meet with to talk about a book does 3 key things to help you read more books: 

  1. It holds you accountable to do the reading, thus motivating you to read. 
  2. It holds you accountable to read well, since you’ll want to have something to say. 
  3. It helps you retain more of the book, since you’ll talk about it, and when you notice yourself retaining information, you’ll be more motivated to read books. 

You can formalize this if you want, but you don’t have to. 

Every week or so my childhood friend and I hop on a Zoom call together (he lives far away), have a couple beers, and talk about what we’re currently reading. 

It’s pretty informal. We don’t call it a book club or anything. 

The conversation just always sort of turns towards books since we’re both always reading something and eager to talk about the ideas or stories we’ve been reading and thinking about. 

We have done some reading projects together though. 

For example, we both read The Birth of Classical Europe together, and now we are embarking on a trip through the Penguin series of European History, at a remarkably slow pace I might add… 

Not only is this making me a better reader, but it’s also making our friendship stronger, which is perhaps the real reason to do something like this. 

Apply Your Learnings to Real Life 

One of the biggest demotivating forces when it comes to reading books is the idea that the time you spend reading isn’t paying off in any other way than the immediate pleasure it brings you.

Many people, Type A people especially, want to see results. Otherwise, they’ll get demotivated and stop doing the work.

Therefore, try your best to apply what you learn in your books to real life situations. 

This is easier if what you’re reading about is a skill. If you read a book on skiing, for example, you can then easily go try out some of the techniques on the slopes. 

It’s harder to do if you’re reading something more academic and idea-based like philosophy, literature, or psychology. 

The benefits these subjects bring to your critical thinking, knowledge base, creativity, and communication skills often go unnoticed in the short-term, especially if you have no tests to take or essays to write. 

That’s why, for those doing self-directed learning in these subjects, I often recommend manufacturing ways to apply your learnings to real life. That way you can see the results. 

Try writing a book review for each book you read, or create a YouTube video introducing people to a topic you’ve read a lot about. (this could also lead to some money). Or have a zoom call with a friend and discuss the book. 

Also, try to make references to what you’re reading in your conversations. Or, if you read a lot of literature, try to phrase something like that great novelist would. 

Taking the somewhat hidden and vague results of your reading and making them clear and obvious is a great way to motivate yourself to read more books. 

Take Note of Improvements in Your Communication Skills

There’s a reason why some of the most articulate people and best writers to ever live were avid readers. 

Reading improves your writing and speaking skills by:

  • Furnishing your mind with more words.
  • Exposing you to new ideas and their relationships. 
  • Demonstrating, via the writing, how to eloquently express complicated theories, arguments, stories, and concepts. 

Noticing your improvements in communication will help you tie your reading to real-life payoff, and thus help you deal with the demotivation caused by the doubt in reading’s worth. 

So next time you say something clever, something the writer you’re reading would approve of — maybe a subtle connection between a beehive and oligarchical governments — give credit to your book reading. You’ll then want to go back for more. 

Review the Benefits of Regular Self-Education

Regular self-education, and the reading it often requires, has so many benefits to your life, career, and wellbeing:

  • Learn skills that help you have more fun or advance your career. 
  • Achieve mastery over your craft or line of work. 
  • Become a star in your field. 
  • Become an expert in your topic. 
  • Lead a more interesting life based around your curiosity. 

Review 10 reasons to engage in self-education for a refresher. This should help you zap away any doubt about the importance of reading books. 

Work to Retain What You’ve Read

There’s nothing that will demotivate you from reading more than looking back on the last ten books you read and realizing that you can’t even explain to someone what each one was about. 

This has happened to me, and it’s why I now put in the work to retain at least 10 takeaways from any non-fiction book, and, for fiction, at least 3 parts I loved, a life lesson, and 3 writing techniques. 

Here are some ways to retain your books:

  • Use a commonplace book: Transfer your favorite sentences and passages into it. Write your reflections on them as well. Answer “why capture this quote or excerpt?” 
  • Mark up the book: Have a conversation with the author, and show your points in the margins – this is marginalia. By interacting more with the text, you get more out of it. 
  • Draw connections: Connect the stuff you read to your personal experience, whether that’s an idea in another book you read, or a person in your life. 
  • Stop and reflect: At a defined interval, maybe 5 pages, but it depends on the book (denser = fewer pages), stop and think over what you just read. Even say it out loud.
  • Re-read your books: Review the passages and sentences you underlined and the notes you took in the margins. 
  • Make a book review after reading the book: Write a couple hundred words about what you liked, learned, and think about the book. You could also film this and share it on YouTube. That’ll hold you accountable to do it well. 

When you notice yourself being able to easily summarize and discuss the book and its key points in real-time, with great fluency, you’ll be pumped to get back out there and keep reading books. 

Use the 2-Stack Method

One of the reasons I actually enjoy mowing the lawn, aside from the fact no one can reach you in all that noise, is that you can clearly see your progress. 

You can see where the grass is long and where it is short. And you can see the contrast between the two. This is satisfying. 

You can do something similar for reading books.

Just create two stacks. The stack on the left are the books you want to read this year. The stack on the right are the books you’ve read. 

Every time you finish a book, you get to move it from the left pile to the right one, and then you get to celebrate. 

Read Martin Eden 

If my friends saw this tip they’d laugh out loud. 

I’ve probably recommended Martin Eden to every person I know who likes to read, and now I’m forcing it on you. 


Because it’s the most inspiring work of fiction about an autodidact that I’ve ever come across. 

The story is about a young sailor who wants to be a writer and uses self-education and an insane amount of reading to try to reach his dream. 

I read the book at a time in my life where I was a bit directionless. I knew I wanted to be a writer but I had no idea how to go about it.

The book opened my eyes to what’s possible, and signaled to me that I needed to read more if I was ever going to make it. It gave me a model to emulate. 

I regularly return to the passages about him self-studying in his room when I need motivation to push through a tough book.

If I haven’t convinced you, check out my article on 3 reasons every autodidact should read Martin Eden.

Display Quotes About Reading From Successful People

My friend has a tattoo on his arm in Latin that translates to “one day it will please us to remember even this,” a quote from Virgil’s Aeneid. 

He got it in law school when he was spending 8+ hours every day reading dense legal books. 

I’m not recommending you get a tattoo of a motivational quote. 

But it could help to put some great quotes about reading somewhere in your office or reading area so you see them regularly and are often reminded of the benefits of reading books. 

Here are some of my favorite quotes on reading:

  • “Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers.” — Harry Truman
  • “The reading of all good books is like conversation with the finest (people) of the past centuries.” ― René Descartes
  • “What I love most about reading: It gives you the ability to reach higher ground. And keep climbing.” ― Oprah
  • “Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body.” ― Joseph Addison
  • “I have challenged myself that I will read thousands of books and I will empower myself with knowledge. Pens and books are the weapons that defeat terrorism,” ― Malala Yousafzai
  • “Show me a family of readers, and I will show you the people who move the world.” ― Napoléon Bonaparte

If these quotes don’t fuel your appetite for books and help you read more of them, I’m not sure what will. 

Join a Book Club

This is a great tactic for people who want to talk about the books they read with other people. 

There’s likely a book club in your area. Ask friends and peers if they know of any. If not, there are also online book clubs like HardCore Literature

Belonging to a book club will hold you accountable because you’ll want to be able to join in the discussion, rather than sitting there like a dud. 

I actually sort of freeze up at the thought of book clubs.

I’m kind of shy when it comes to speaking in public, especially on topics I feel strongly about. For that reason, I prefer one-to-one book clubs with a close friend. 

However, public speaking is probably a skill I should work on, so I should probably try to join one of these sometime soon. 

6 Tips for People Who Feel They Lack Time to Read Books

If you feel like you don’t have enough time to read, try reading every morning and night, putting down your phone, listening to audiobooks, and the other tactics I mention below. 

These will help you fix this mindset and read more books this year. 

Read Every Morning & Every Night

I’ve been using this method for years now. 

Most mornings I read for about 20-30 minutes. And I do the same at night before bed. 

This allows me to get at least 25 pages every day even if I don’t do any other reading blocks. 

I find that nonfiction is best in the morning for me, and fiction is best at night as it allows me to start slipping into another world and relaxing. 

Put Down Your Phone

Imagine all the reading you could do if you always read instead of scrolling social media. 

In Deep Work, Cal Newport suggests that you should schedule “phone time” throughout the day to cut usage and get more attention back into your control. 

I should probably start doing this. 

Even though I make a concentrated effort to curb my phone use, I still sometimes end up with weeks where my average daily usage is like 3-4 hours. That’s 75-100 pages right there. 

Make Reading a Daily Habit

I use a habit tracker to make sure I’m reading at least 2 hours every day. 

When I successfully do 2 hours, I get to fill in the circle. 

If you’re just starting out with a reading habit, start small. You want to pick something achievable.

Maybe 10 pages per day. Or 20 minutes per day. Also, pick a time of day to do it. Maybe that’s in the morning or before bed. 

Lastly, give yourself a low-count that still allows you to check off your habit tracker. For instance, if your goal is 10 pages, maybe your low-count is 1 page. 

That way, even if you know you’re certain that you won’t hit the 10 pages, you’ll still try to get that one. You’ll open the book, and sometimes, you’ll just keep going.

Pretty sure I got this idea from Atomic Habits, but not sure. 

Participate in Reading Challenges

If you’re competitive, participating in a reading challenge can be a great way to read more books. 

It’ll force you to make reading a priority. And this will show you that with a few tweaks to your lifestyle you actually do have time to read books. 

I find that the most rewarding and motivating challenges are when you compete against friends. 

Recently, my friends and I did a 5k challenge (no prize money, just glory). My sheer desire to be the fastest in the group had me doing my training almost every day. 

What does that say about my insecurities? Who knows. Probably a lizard-brain status thing. 

All I know for sure is that it feels really good to beat my friends at things. I’ve liked it since I was a kid playing soccer in my backyard and Mario Kart in my basement.   

If you have that competitive nature, tap into it as a motivator to read more books. 

Here are some reading challenge ideas

Listen to Audiobooks

With an audiobook, you can easily read 20 pages of a book while washing the dishes, driving to work, going on a walk, or even running from a herd of charging bison. 

I use Audible to get my audiobooks. They offer a 30-day free trial where you get 1 free audiobook (2 if you’re a Prime Member).

Plus, you’ll support my blog since I get $5 for free trial sign-ups, and that helps me spend more of my time researching, thinking, and writing about self-directed learning. 

If you sign up, thank you! I’ll try to spend the money on something useful, perhaps a book, and not on a pint of ale (but no promises here). 

Oh, and here are some tips for learning effectively with audiobooks

Carry a Book With You

Stephen King always has a book with him. He reads whenever he has a chance. 

This is a great way to find the time to read more books. 

Stick one in your backpack. Read during lunch, on the subway, before a meeting, in the dentist’s office, on the floor during a bank robbery.  

You’ll be amazed at all the time you have to read. It was just hiding in the nooks and crannies of your days.

As an added benefit, you’ll also make philosopher Allan Bloom a little less grumpy about our culture. 

Just listen to him talking about his students’ relationships with books: 

“The notion of books as companions is foreign to them. Justice Black with his tattered copy of the Constitution in his pocket at all times is not an example that would mean much to them. There is no printed word to which they look for counsel, inspiration or joy.” — Allan Bloom, The Closing of the American Mind

Make books your companion. Make Allan happier! 

5 Reading Tips for People Suffering from Resistance

Here are some tips for people who might be held back from reading by doubt, fear, or some other form of emotional resistance. 

These tips include guarding against reading perfectionism, taking online courses, and other tactics that I’ve tried and found helpful. 

Squash Reading Perfectionism

A few years ago I read the classic How to Read a Book by Mortime Adler.

It certainly made me a better reader, but it also had a surprising negative effect on my reading output. 

Armed as I was with the knowledge of what it means to successfully read a book, I started to worry about failing. I started stressing over not executing the perfect read. 

Thus, resistance was strengthened, and I found myself only reading when I felt totally alert and motivated (which isn’t that often). 

I was suffering from reading perfectionism, which you can read more about here. 

What I’m driving at is to not worry about performing the perfect read — the total comprehension, total retention, total analysis read. 

Sometimes it’ll happen, sometimes it won’t. Don’t get so hung up on it. 

Also, even if you read for thirty minutes and remember nothing you’ve still strengthened your brain’s powers of focus, reason, logic, creativity, and comprehension. 

Take Online Courses With Required Reading

University-produced online courses tend to come with reading lists. 

For example, here’s the reading list for Yale’s free course Hemingway, Faulkner, and Fitzgerald:

Each lecture will tell you which texts to read. This can make you feel like you’re in a college setting, and increase your motivation to do your reading. 

Plus, since the person prescribing you the reading list is a professor, you’ll trust that reading these books will help you learn the topic, and therefore you’ll be more likely to follow through. 

Doubt is probably the biggest danger to the autodidact’s reading habits.

Slowly Increase Your Reading Over Time

Don’t obsess over how many books you read this year. 

That can lead you to set unachievable reading goals that you end up giving up on.

Instead, know that every year you’ll become a better and more consistent reader, as long as you make it something you do almost every day.

The guy reading for 4 hours a night didn’t just snap his fingers and say “ya know what, I should read more!” and then start with 4 hours and do it consistently. 

He’d have burned out quickly. I sure did when I tried something similar at the beginning of my reading journey. 

The truth is that this super reader probably read for an average of 1 hour a day one year, 2 the next, 2.5 the next, pushing himself a little more out of his comfort zone each year until he was comfortable reading 4 hours per day. 

We all start somewhere. Slow and steady progress is the key. 

Read Across Different Comprehension Levels 

Sometimes I’ll read a work of philosophy like Leviathan and think that my brain is made of sardines and cheese. 

Then I’ll go read the new personal development book and my brain will start to look again like it’s made of golden pincers dissecting and analyzing ideas and dropping the good parts into my steel-cage of a memory. 

Remind yourself every once in a while that you’re a stronger reader than you think by reading a book that’s well below your comprehension level. 

And then, comfortable with your intellect, remind yourself that you still have work to do by reading something a bit out of your comfort zone. 

Set a Timer for 10 Minutes

Afraid you won’t be able to focus on reading? 

Set a timer for just 10 minutes. You can focus on almost any task for that long. This makes the cognitive effort seem a little less intimidating. 

I do it sometimes if I really don’t feel like I have the energy to read. It works wonders. 

Sometimes I just keep going past 10 minutes. 

Other times the timer dings and I go make myself a sandwich, feeling at least a bit accomplished with the 4 pages I read. 

8 Tips to Solve the Chorification of Reading Books

Sometimes we can accidentally make reading feel like a job when it should be fun. 

Here are some ideas for making reading fun again if you’ve lost your love for it. 

They include watching booktube, reading about topics you find interesting, grabbing a childhood favorite, and other helpful tactics I use to read more books.  

Strike the Right Balance Between Structure & Freedom in Reading Lists

When I first started out in self-directed study, I would set unreasonably strict reading goals.

For example, in a given quarter, I’d plan out the 20 books I was going to read. 

The problem was that left me no room for following my ever-changing curiosity. The plan started to feel more like a prison, and I’d always end up giving up on it entirely. 

When creating reading lists, you have to build in some flexibility so that if you come across a book that interests you that isn’t on the plan, you can read it without falling behind on your goals. 

To illustrate, every month I know I’m going to read around 5 books. When creating a monthly reading plan, I’ll pick 3 books I’m going to read — usually they’re part of some annual plan — and I’ll leave 2 open slots that I get to fill with whatever interests me at the time. 

One of the many benefits of being an autodidact is that you don’t encounter strict, inflexible teachers. (most teachers are great but there are still some who can stifle your love for learning). 

However, we can still become these bad teachers ourselves, strangling the love of reading we once had. 

Instead, we should be the teachers that understand a balance between structure and freedom is key to produce consistent readers. 

Read in Genres You Enjoy

As the old adage goes, “read what you love until you love to read.” 

If you’re struggling to form a reading habit, maybe it’s because you aren’t reading what truly interests you. Instead you’re reading what you think you’re supposed to read. 

To demonstrate, when I first became a consistent reader in college, I was reading books on lucid dreaming, spirituality, and even shamanism. 6 years later I mostly read history, philosophy, and classic literature (and plenty of current literary fiction and fantasy novels). 

If I had started with John Locke or Philip Roth, I’m not sure the habit would’ve stuck. 

Get Comfortable Giving up on Some Books

It’s better to give up on a book than to continue racking up days of not reading at all. 

Pushing through has its merits, but sometimes it’s unnecessary. We wouldn’t continue on a diet that was upsetting our stomach, so why continue on a book that’s numbing our minds. 

I’d estimate that I finish about 3/4 of the books I begin. 

Page 80 seems to be the magic number for me. For some reason, that’s when I know this is just something I don’t really want to read anymore. 

I recently gave up on a horror novel because it was just not scaring me. I found the ghost more laughable than haunting. 

I’ll usually set an intention to come back to it. Sometimes I will, sometimes I won’t.

Read About Topics You Find Fascinating

Another easy way to make reading addicting is to focus on topics that interest you.

It doesn’t matter if that’s AI, gardening, sci-fi, Buddhism, travel, or political philosophy. The key is to let your curiosity push you. 

You can also read topically, say 5-10 books on one topic, to become a semi-expert on the topic, which can be pretty motivating. 

Check out How to use reading to find your calling

Watch YouTube Channels About Reading 

Listening to someone express their love for reading is infectious. 

Here are my favorite YouTubers who talk about books:

  • Jared Henderson (philosophy, sci-fi, commonplace books, reading tips)
  • Benjamin Mcevoy: (classic literature, reading tips, “how to reads” for great works)

Find some who review and talk about books in your favorite genres and watch some videos when you feel like you’ve lost your love for reading. 

Designate a Cozy Spot for Reading

When you have a comfortable place in your home to read a book you’ll look forward to reading, and, as a result, you’ll end up spending more time reading. 

My fiance and I just bought a great reading chair for exactly this purpose. I noticed that I was always reading in bed, and could only read for like 45 minutes before my neck and jaw started to ache so much that I had to stop. Gaining knowledge shouldn’t be physically painful! 

Now I have a place to read that doesn’t hurt me. 

You could also go to a cafe or library to read. I find that going out to get a coffee and read my book makes it all feel like a bit of an adventure.

Always be Reading 2-3 Books at a Time

Right now I’m reading Don Quixote, The Closing of the American Mind, and The Eye of the World. 

That way, I always have a book for my different moods.

Classic literature for when I’m feeling literary, nonfiction for when I want theories and arguments, and a lighter current novel for when I’m in the mood for something fun. 

If I only had one book, then those times when I’m not in the mood to read it I’d just not read at all. Now I have other options, so reading rarely feels like something I’m using discipline to do. I just follow my interests at the moment. 

Break a Slump by Reading a Childhood Favorite

Not feeling the love for reading anymore? Go back to a book that you loved as a child? This should break the slump.

That might be Roald Dahl, The Hobbit, or any work of children’s literature.

You’ll come away feeling like a kid again, curious and eager to explore new imaginary worlds and meet new interesting characters. 

Read More Books: Let Your Curiosity Guide You

Alright, I’ve given you the four hurdles that might be holding you back from reading more books, as well as 35 different tactics to overcome them. 

Hopefully this will help you read as many books as you want to. 

If I had to pick one piece of advice, it’d be to read what interests you. Your curiosity is the best motivating force you have. 

Sometimes I fail to follow my curiosity, to the detriment of my reading habits and my self-education. 

If you want some more tips on reading, as well as some reading lists to break into subjects, check out my reading lists and tips section of my website. 

Otherwise, happy reading! 


After graduating college with an econ degree I realized I was still anything but well-educated. Over the last 4 years, I've been trying to fix that, autodidact-mode — by reading books and engaging in self-directed study across multiple subjects. On this blog, my goal is to share my learnings and help others get a well-rounded education outside of school. Education, after all, is a lifelong process, one well worth the investment.

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