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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Conn chapter.

It will come as no surprise based on most of my other articles that I love to read. As a future secondary English teacher, reading will be a significant part of my career. I grew up loving books, but as middle and high school homework piled up, reading for fun took quite the back seat. Now, I’m over halfway through my 2023 reading goal and could not be happier. Here’s how I did it.

1. Reflecting

The first step for getting back into reading was figuring out why I had temporarily lost my love for it in the first place. Everyone will have their own reasons, but mine came down to a lack of motivation to read extra books outside of the several I was reading in my classes. It was not until last year though that I realized I could strengthen my love for reading by supplementing required texts with desired ones.

2. Finding a Good Reading Spot

Now that I’m fully back into reading, I can happily dive into a book anywhere. Get to class a few minutes early? Read. Need a break from homework? Read. However, some of my motivation for this came from where I was. My hometown has several beaches so I would often go there, or to my favorite café. When the environment was relaxing, I could focus on the task at hand: reading a new story.

3. Setting a Time to Read

This was a tip given to me by someone else. They suggested reading a few pages each night before bed, and once it became part of my routine, I would stick with it. This made perfect sense to me, and I can attest to the fact that it does work. Rather than endlessly scrolling through Instagram Reels before bed, I make it a point to read a chapter (or two) of whatever book I’m on at the moment. It also guarantees that I end my day on a positive note, doing something that I enjoy. Quick tip for this one — invest in a book light. This was a recent addition to my nightly reading, and it makes it really convenient to have the “big light” off but still be able to read easily.

4. Choosing the Right Books

I did this by thinking about the types of TV shows and movies I like to watch. There was a common denominator of rom-coms, so I started there. From there, I focused on some of my interests, which led me to enjoy some non-fiction books, particularly about issues in education, as well as women’s rights. Of course, these are not the only books I read, but starting off with this is a great way to get into the books you’re reading. Bonus points if you go o your local library and ask for a book rec! The librarians will be thrilled.

5. A Calm Reading Environment

I would love it if everything could be nice and quiet while I read, perhaps with the exception of some ocean waves on a beach. This, though, is not usually the reality while I’m reading at school, so I solve this problem with some noise-canceling headphones and my Calm Study playlist on Spotify. It consists of café jazz and instrumentals to give some background noise without distractions, and I highly recommend it, both for reading and studying.

That’s all of my best advice for getting back into reading. I found that the more I made it part of my routine, the easier it was and the more I looked forward to it. Now, my nightly reading is a highlight of my day, and I hope it does the same for you.

Bella is a sophomore at the University of Connecticut double-majoring in English and Secondary English Education. She is a Public Relations and Events Chair for Her Campus UConn, where she spends time planning events to foster a strong sense of community among the chapter. Bella enjoys writing articles about books she reads, and providing advice for incoming students. In her spare time, you’ll find Bella browsing a bookstore with a coffee in-hand, baking her latest favorite recipe, embroidering some flowers, or listening to her current Spotify playlist on repeat.