Today’s blog post a little different and I thought I might share my tips and tricks to tackle this very monstrous topic : What to do when you are in a reading slump?
A readings slump is that low phase of a bibliophile’s life in which he or she is unable to read anything! Monstrous, am I right? I have seen so many of my friends suffer with it and in the last one year, I have had such long slumps that I couldn’t even read past a line. I have a couple of tips that I use to get over this and while all these work wonders for me, I’m hoping that at least one of these is able to break down that slump wall.
WHAT LEADS TO A READING SLUMP?
There are basically 3 main reasons why someone falls into a reading slump.
- Book Hangover : Ever have that feeling when you read a really, REALLY good book and you can’t get the story and it’s characters out of your head? That my friend is called a Book Hangover.
- Bad Book Headache : The opposite of a book hangover is a bad book headache in which a really bad book scares you away so badly that any written word gives you the creeps. We have all have that one book we wish we could forget we ever read!
- Brain Into Overdrive : The last reason is that your brain is waaaayyyyyy too overworked and exhausted to read anymore and wants to see entertainment already made and imagined for it instead of working for it. It can owe to personal reasons such as a hectic schedule, over tiredness and family emergencies.
GETTING OVER READING SLUMPS
- Let it be : If you are suffering from Brain into Overdrive, the only and only way to go about it is to let it be and not force yourself to read. When you are unable to do the one thing that makes you happy, it is your body’s way of telling you that you really need to back off and give it some space. Go out, watch your favourite movies, play your favourite game, spend time with your family so that you brain finds the time to unwind until you are finally ready to pick up your favourite ink friends again.
- Re-reads : If you are suffering from a bad book headache, sometimes rereading your favourite books can help your brain get over the phobia of bad novels and be happy again. I remember I read a book called Figmented Reality and the unpredictable heart last year and I was so terrified of what I had read that I couldn’t bring myself to read for the next couple of days. I then went back to my favorites, finding comfort in the lands of Hogwarts and Middle Earth.
- Rereading the same book : A book hangover kind of acts as a chain that binds you to the universe it is set in, preventing you to move on to anything else. The right way to handle it is to kick back and stay there until you are tired. Rereading the book can give you the closure you need plus, with the economic concept of diminishing utility, the enjoyment of reading it again consecutively will help your brain get tired of it and move on. Don’t worry, it won’t put you off of it for good but just give you the tiny window of escape to move on.
- Don’t try too hard : walking on the lines of the first tip of letting it be, it is better to not try too hard to read anything. The more you force yourself to read, the more your mind will resist and end up detesting it and you definitely, ABSOLUTELY don’t need that.
- Keep off of trying new genres or experimenting : In a slump, you don’t want to be burdened with the experimentation of a new genre because you are not in the condition to do so. Doing so can put you off of that genre for no fault of its own and you might end up not picking up the book or the genre ever again.
- Reading in breaks : never try to read a book at a stretch during a slump. Read in small breaks so that you have the required space of unwinding yourself.
- Read anthologies or short stories : stay away from huge books or series during a slump. Reading short stories with the idea of the end only a few pages away instead of 200 pages away helps your mind relax from the pressure of reading so much and for so long. Pick up a light read to ensure your brain isn’t trying to work too hard while it is getting out of that reading pit.
- Bookstagram to the rescue : whenever I get into a slump, I stalk bookstagram to get inspired enough to read. The pictures of all those beautiful books and stories just waiting to be read usually set me up good!
- Switch to graphic novels or comics : if you aren’t ready to commit to novels yet, reading graphic novels and comics can help you still keep in touch with your reading habit without either completely giving it up or risking reading too much and getting scared off.
- READ TO ENJOY : When I started bookstagramming last year, the trends of keeping up with the monthly rituals of posting a TBR picture, reading only the books chosen or posting without inspiration to complete that tag challenge got so bad to me that I couldn’t read anything at all. Finally, after a month of contemplation, I decided I would do as I pleased and freed myself from the compulsion to post like everyone else. Another time was when the overwhelming amount of review books made it completely unable to read anything that I liked which in turn, put me of reading for weeks. When I finally decided to take up books but of a set number and post reviews on my own terms to make space for my own hauls and favourites, I could breathe better and since then, I have enjoyed both, review books as well as the ones I actually want to read. It is all about balance and how you do not, ABSOLUTELY DON’T HAVE TO CONFORM TO THE BOOKISH COMMUNITY’S RULES OF SOCIAL MEDIA.
There! I hope these tips and tricks help you get over that reading slump!!
Have fun reading!
Until next time!