summer reading

It has been so hot out that I have been unmotivated to do a lot of things that need doing, including weeding the garden and general house maintenance. Even regular cleaning up has slipped because it’s just too hot. (I know that doesn’t make much sense because all the cleaning takes place in the air-conditioned house, but still…)

I have, however, been able to keep up with reading.

Lots of people like to catch up on reading during the summer. Whether taken on vacation or to your backyard, “summer reading” has become a genre of its own, it seems.

What if you feel like you’ll never get to this year’s popular summer read because you’re too busy reading work-related material? If you regularly carry home professional reading because you “don’t have enough time” to read at work, find a way to work reading into your daily routine.

Here are some ideas for fitting professional reading into your day:

  • Take advantage of small blocks of reading time. Instead of ripping articles and throwing them in your In Box, put them in a folder that you can carry around and read when you are waiting for a meeting to start, when you are standing in line, or when you are looking for a quick break from a high-priority task (you know, the time you would normally check your email or twitter to see what everyone else is up to).
  • Schedule time to read, just like you schedule time for meetings and projects. If you know that you start to fade in the early afternoon, schedule 15-20 minutes of reading in another area of your workspace. The change of scenery will wake up your brain.
  • Choose your reading carefully. Every piece of paper that comes your way does not merit your attention. If you’ve been holding onto an article for months, hoping you’ll get to it eventually, either put a ready-by date on it and read it, or let it go.

Don’t allow your folder to become so full that it seems like punishment to address it. Read the best and dump the rest. Then you’ll actually have time to do some light reading. After all, you don’t want to wait until next summer to read the blockbuster you’ve had since last summer, do you?

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