Read (A LOT) more

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Reading more and better makes us improve in many areas, it is undoubtedly a healthy habit that fosters our professional development and can become a passion.

Ernest Hemingway said that “There is no more loyal friend than a book.” And I fully agree with this quote. Reading is a cool source of learning and fun. Furthermore, one of the characteristics of many of the great professionals is their passion for reading. Reading is a great hobby that allows you to keep up to date with your professional activity, improve your level of knowledge on many subjects, improve your language and communication skills … and it can also be a great hobby for you. Says Joseph Addison – British writer and politician – “Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body”.

Many professionals want to read more, but many times they fail. I wanted to share with you some ideas that can make it easier for you to read much more from now on.

  1. Read out of devotion, not out of obligation. I remember when I was in school and had to read several books out of obligation, to do work, or because they were taking an exam. And the obligation made reading boring for me. But when I finished my university studies, I started reading about topics related to my profession and I loved it. Nobody forced me, I just read because I enjoyed reading. Since then I have read an average of 1 book per week (I estimate that, in total, more than 1,100 books about my professional activity).
  2. Eliminate activities. You will need time to read. Personally, I like to read frequently, but for a short time. Find holes in your agenda and take profit of your travelling and commuting times, waiting times… Always carry the book you are reading with you and take advantage of this time slots. Also think about what you waste your time on. Stop doing some stupid activities that we all do and invest this time reading.
  3. Drop books as soon as possible. It’s one of the best tips I got on reading. Some books I start reading, I don’t like them, and they bore me. I don’t know why, but I was always trying to finish them. If you continue with a book that you don’t like, the readings get longer, you get bored, you don’t start other books because you want to end … Start reading any book … and if you don’t like it, you park it and go for another. That’s easy.
  4. Use electronic devices. Most of us have a smartphone attached to our bodies all day. Use applications like Amazon’s Kindle or other electronic applications that allow you to read on any device. Read on the tablet, on the computer, buy yourself a device specially designed for reading. Millions of titles in your hands, at a single click … and many of them for free.
  5. Discover audiobooks. Listening to books is great. It allows you to “read” a book while doing other activities such as walking, running, driving, traveling … There are great applications Amazon Audible, Storytel, Kobo … There are many … try them and for sure you “get hooked”.
  6. Use “Reading Lists“. I love the Amazon Reading List. There I write down all the books that someone recommends me or that I discover when I read other books … I love it. Also, when I go to buy a new book, I order my list from the lowest price to the highest and I always find a book that I wish that has dropped significantly in price.
  7. Use applications like “Goodreads”. Finding a book that you like is not easy. I love the Good Reads app. It is designed to help you find the most suitable book for you. You can search by subject, by author, you can see what other people have read, their opinions and ratings … Great.
  8. Visit the bookstores. Although I am passionate about the digital world, I love visiting bookstores, for me they are magical spaces. I see what is new, I personally touch the books, I ask the professionals who work there, I discover the latest trends … With the number of books currently published, you will surely find many options that may interest you. And you also help a business model that needs our collaboration (now more than ever) to continue.

I strongly advise you invest more time in reading. You will learn a lot; you will be up to date, and you will enjoy a lot. As Harry S. Truman, 33 President of the United States, said: “Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are great readers”.

Xavi Roca

I am Talentist, I help organizations, managers and professionals to achieve high performance through enhancing their leadership and personal brand. I am passionate about leadership, high performance team management and Personal Branding, and I have dedicated my professional career to helping companies and professionals develop and enhance their talents and strengths to achieve their maximum development and performance.

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