The One Thing You Can Do Today That Will Change Your Life

Isolated open book

 

Read 10 books a year. 

So simple, yet so powerful, it changed my life, and it will change yours.

 

A person who doesn’t read gets the same education as someone who can’t read.   [tweet this]


I’m deep into Tony Robbins’ tome on finance called MONEY: Master the Game, in which he says, “I didn’t quite read a book a day, but over seven years, I did read more than 700 books to find the answers to help myself and others.” That’s 100 books a year. Warren Buffett, one of the most successful investors of all time, estimates that 80 percent of his working hours are spent reading. When I think about what I want to spend my time doing, it’s comes down to reading, writing, running (or skiing or biking or just exercising outside), and spending time with the people I love. The books you read are less important than the actual reading.

 

Read widely and outside your field.   [tweet this]


What we’re after here is the habit of reading. I realize very few people can manage a book a day, or even 100 a year. The good news is that’s not necessary for this to work. Even just 10 books in a single year will change your life forever. At average reading paces that comes down to about six minutes of reading a day.

Here’s How:

  • Get a library card. You’ll be able to get audiobooks and hard books for free.
  • Wake up and read. Get it in before the kids get up and the craziness of your day starts. Sip your coffee and read your book for the first 20-30 minutes of each day.
  • Read before bed. This is a great way to unwind before drifting off. Leave the screens out of the bedroom (they are detrimental to your sleep and your sex life).
  • Read offline and unplugged. Your iPhone and computer are distractions (practice airplane mode). The book, The Shallows, is good on this.
  • Start small. Set a timer and go for that six minutes. Work up to 20 pages or 20 minutes, it doesn’t matter, just get started today. If you get distracted just come back to it as quickly as you can.
  • Listen to an audiobook while you exercise. All you endurance athletes will be amazed how many books you can consume this way.
  • Take a book with you. Whenever you leave the house be sure to grab your book. You will be more likely to read it when you’re stuck in an unexpected long line. Twitter and Facebook can wait, must wait. I know they give you that pellet of dopamine, but they won’t change your life. 
  • Join a book club. The peer pressure will help push you to read more. If you are in Boulder hit me up, the Boulder Book Club might have one or two spots left.
  • Use Good Reads to track progress, books you want to read, and where you are against your reading goals (which you now have!).

** This is my first attempt to blog more often. Short, punchy 300-500 word pieces—hit me on twitter with any topic ideas you’d like to read.