How To Find Time To Read As An Extremely Busy Working Mom
Hands up if you keep telling yourself you’d like to read more.
You already know the benefits it has for your brain power, and you love the escape of getting into a really good book. But, you’re just so darn busy – there seems to always be something else that needs doing and you just never seem to be able to find the time.
The good news is, that it is easier to find small pockets of time to read than you think. We both know that being a mom means there’s lots of unexpected twists and turns in our daily lives, so devoting thirty minutes a day to reading a book is no easy task.
That being said, with a little forward planning and some initiative there are enough minutes in the day to get your daily dose of reading in.
Swap out your social media time
How many times a day do you find yourself on social media? While at the time it seems like a good idea, it’s usually pretty unproductive. According to studies in 2018 Instagram users average around 53 minutes a day on the platform – imagine the amount of reading you could get done in that time!
Schedule it in
If you’re a regular follower of my blog, you’ll already know that I’m big on planning ahead of time and following a schedule. So, just like you schedule in work and family commitments, block out some time in your diary to read.
Even if it’s just ten minutes here and there, having that time reserved will make such a difference!
Always be prepared
I’ll wager a bet that there are always times during your day that you could be reading while doing something else; on the train to work, during your lunch break, or while you’re waiting for the kids to finish their after-school activities.
Always keep a book (or kindle) within reach so that during those small moments of time you can reach for that and make the most of those unspent minutes.
A friend of mine spends 10 minutes reading in the parking lot before she picks her kids up from daycare. She is paying for the time anyway and chooses to give herself 10 minutes of much-needed peace and quiet before she has to contend with the evening chaos!
Give Audiobooks a try
Multitasking can be your best friend. If you haven’t already given audiobooks a try, now could be the time to start. Sometimes we’re too exhausted to read (there are days I feel I need matchsticks to keep my eyes open!), or sometimes we have the opportunity to be learning new things, but we don’t have free hands. In both of these instances, you could be filling your brains with knowledge by listening to audiobooks.
So, the next time you’re cooking dinner, at the gym, in the car or whilst doing the household chores (just to name a few) switch on an audiobook!
You’ll find that it can be surprising just how much audio material you can fit into your daily life. Another perk is that you will feel so much more fulfilled because you will be enriching your life with interesting, motivating, and thought-provoking content which can make such a positive difference to your mental state, and even inspire you!
Look at a subscription-based service such as Audible. The have an amazing and varied selection of books. Even better, if you’re not enjoying what you’re listening to, you can easily return or exchange it for something different.
Use technology productively
Instead of reaching for your phone or tablet to hit up social media in times of boredom, download books onto your devices so that during these moments you can read a few pages instead. Having books available on your handheld devices makes fitting in an extra ten minutes a day super easy – it’s always on hand so there is literally no excuse!
Some libraries even have apps where you can borrow books for free, this is definitely worth checking out if you’re not sure whether a book is for you or not.
The next time you reach for your phone during your lunch break to scroll through social media, why not fit in ten minutes of reading instead?!
Choose books that are easy to stop and start
Trying to read a super complex novel when you only have short pockets of time here and there may not be the best idea. Instead opt for books that are easy to start again from where you last left off. I love self-help books from authors that I can relate too.
A couple of my favourite books at the moment are; Off the clock, by Laura Vanderkam and Girl, Stop apologizing, by Rachel Hollis.
The “You Are A Badass” series by Jen Sincero are also fantastic reads for self-help that adds in humour and a lot of relatable realism.
Other great reading options when you only have short spurts of time are humorous or easy to read novels. An author whose books I feel are just the ticket for light-hearted entertainment is Nora Roberts.
Finding the time to read doesn’t have to be stressful, nor do you need to have hours available every day to do so. Learning to maximize the pockets of time you have available each day will enable you to zoom through some great books in no time!
What will you read next? Let me know in the comments below.