Recently I’ve had trouble getting absorbed in the books I’m reading. I asked Twitter for advice, and compiled the suggestions here.
Recently I’ve been experiencing a reading rut. I used to find it easy to get absorbed in a book and forget the world around me, but lately I’ve been struggling to stay engaged when I read.
I tweeted about this a few days ago and discovered I wasn’t the only one. A lot of people chimed in with their troubles concentrating long enough to read and their inability to get sucked into books. (And who said Twitter was dead?)
I also got a lot of useful suggestions.
Here I compile the main theories for why reading ruts occur and a collection of suggestions on how to deal with a rut. If you’re struggling with your reading, I hope some of the advice helps.
Many adults have lost the joy they felt writing as children. Here are some suggestions on how to bring it back.
A lot of writers started writing as kids. We loved to read, so we decided to make our own stories.
Some of our stories were written and illustrated in crayon in stapled-together booklets. Some were written in stiffly adult cursive in pink lockable diaries. And some were typed in obsolete word processing programs in which documents could never be longer than 13 pages.
Writing when you’re six or ten or thirteen is a joyous activity. Characters and their magnificent struggles swirl through your head and every word that comes out is a diamond.
But at some point the magic fades.
You agonise, you doubt yourself. You pack away the crayons.
Grown-ups aren’t better at everything. So get your crayons back out and remember the fun you had writing (or might have had writing) as a kid.
I read ten self-help books and took away various insights, some of which are helpful. I summarise the helpful ones and the others here.
At their best, self-helps books are amazing because they literally teach you how to help yourself, and inspire you to do so. Want to become a millionaire by sitting on your couch playing video games? There will be a self-help book for that.
However, some self-help books would have been better if they’d remained blog posts, and some should never have been written at all.
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