Top Tips for Balancing University and Personal Reading

Emma Leask suggests how to keep reading books for pleasure while studying.

Emma Leask
27th October 2021
With the start of the first in-person semester for over a year, it can be difficult to adjust to all the changes whilst wanting to keep up with your reading life. This article will give you some advice for how to balance university with your personal reading.

1. Create a cosy space just for reading. This may be difficult in university accommodation where your room is your only personal space, but even sitting in a different spot to where you work helps you distance yourself from studying and get in the reading mood. Putting on an ambience video on YouTube to block out background noise can help you focus on the book.

2. Have a dedicated time for reading and commit to it. This may need to change depending on deadlines and other commitments, but try and set aside a period of time, as long or short as you want, when you switch off your phone and read. You could also fit some reading in when you’d otherwise be scrolling on your phone. Grab your book whilst your dinner is cooking, or read a couple of chapters before bed.

3. Listen to an audiobook whilst doing boring tasks like washing up and laundry and you’ll be surprised at how many pages you can get through. Travelling to and from university is another perfect opportunity for listening to audiobooks. If you have a long journey back home, you’ll be able to listen to a good chunk on your travels.

4. It might be helpful to set a page goal for each day/week/month or even a goal for how many books you want to read. Although you might need to change this when other things come up, keeping a number in mind is a good motivator for picking up the book and reaching a milestone with every page you read. Track your progress with apps such as Storygraph and Booksloth for satisfying statistics and graphs charting your reading.

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