How To Cultivate A Daily Reading Habit?
The four language skills that one needs to develop for complete communication are listening, speaking, reading, and writing. The multifaceted process of reading involves word recognition, comprehension, fluency, and motiva-tion. It is a thinking process that involves decoding symbols to derive meaning. The types of reading are scanning, skimming, extensive reading, and intensive reading. Reading can be active or passive, depending on the degree of involvement. Reading every day is one of the habits of successful people. Reading enables one to travel around the globe without physically leaving one’s place. According to Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, reading a book gives us the habit of solitary reflection and enjoyment.
The seven practices of good readers are:
It helps readers form mental imagery of what they are reading and understand the text better.
It involves comprehending the text by making connections with readers’ own previous experiences.
It gives readers the purpose of reading and lets them dive deeper into the text.
It involves concluding by connecting the text with what readers already know. It can be done by reading between the lines.
It helps decide which part of the text is essential and what the author/writer wants to convey.
Monitoring for meaning:
It occurs when readers go through the text at their own pace to check for un-derstanding of the text.
It includes gathering information from the read text and forming new meanings.
The English philosopher Francis Bacon once commented that reading makes a full man. Inculcating a daily read-ing habit has long-term benefits. Let’s check a few of them.
Reading provides food for thought. It gives readers access to the fountain of knowledge and information. It arms one to face the world because a well-read person is respected everywhere.
- Reading boosts analytical and logical skills. It also enhances readers’ critical-thinking abilities.
- Readers can experience several health benefits when they read daily. The benefits include peace of mind, low anxiety and stress level, regulated blood pressure, and a healthy mind.
- Reading is one of the best ways to expand vocabulary, improve communication, create awareness, and master a language. It is also possible to improve one’s writing skills by reading daily. Reading infuses one’s mind with innovative and creative ideas that reflect in writing.
- Reading is an economical form of entertainment. Different reading genres are fictions and nonfiction, magazines, newspapers, journals, e-books, audiobooks, and the like.
- Reading stimulates and activates the mind, boosts concentration, improves memory, and eliminates neg-ativity. Keeping the mind engaged by reading daily can help in keeping mental/psychological ailments at bay.
Here are the ways on how to cultivate a daily reading habit:
- One of the first ways is to arrange reading material that interests you. These days reading materials are readily available. You can visit a library, subscribe, purchase books and e-books, or borrow. Unless you are interested in what you read, you won’t feel motivated to read regularly. Ask for recommendations from avid readers or bookstore owners.
- Do not set a lofty goal. Take one step at a time. Set daily targets or a specific number of pages that you will cover and increase the number gradually. Read for enjoyment and not as an obligation. Opt for light reading as a beginner and, later, move on to heavier materials.
- Choose or invite a reading buddy. It is natural to get deviated or bored when one starts something new. Read-ing with a friend or companion will help in the long run. Both can read the same material and discuss it later on. This way, you can test what you have understood. Joining a book club will also help.
- Practice good reading habits, as mentioned earlier. Please get to know literary devices and their uses, look for meanings of new words and note them down, keep a dictionary handy, read thoroughly at a moderate pace, and, above all, dig deeper into the text. Visit book festivals from time to time will let you explore your book choice.
- Make reading an everyday affair by setting a specific time of the day and a fixed place for reading. Prepare a reading list and cover the list gradually.
- Do not let social media and technology interfere with your reading goals and time. Make reading a priority every day and schedule your day well.
Remember Rome was not built in a day. Similarly, reading habit cannot be formed in one day. It takes time, effort, and discipline to develop this habit. Once developed, you can reap the benefits of reading in the long run.
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