‘Back to school’, back to stress

Posted on Aug 31 2016 - 12:00pm by Claire Herbaux
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Let’s be honest, the summer is the best time to read. If it is sunny we can sit outside and enjoy a good book, if it is rainy we have a perfect excuse to stay in and read. No matter how busy the summer months get with children, festivals or covering for others who are on holiday, we do always seem to find more time to read; Of course it helps that the days are longer.

There are ways to keep up your reading, even when your every day picks up the pace.

It seems simple, but make time for reading. If you are good with routine, plan time before bed, if you can read on public transport, fit it into your commute, and why not plan reading time as a family? Have a couple of hours a week where everyone finds a cozy corner to sit and read.

It is not always just about books. To insure some reading time, you could sign up to the print edition of your newspaper instead of the online version. It gets you into the habit of sitting down to read rather than wolfing down snippets and headlines on the go and it inspires those around you – on your phone, you could be doing a myriad of things, but this way you show you are reading!

Putting your phone away is generally a good idea. If you want time to read, make your home an electronics free zone for a few hours a week. It sounds drastic, but it’s not. Check the TV schedule and decide which days there’s something good on (you wouldn’t want to miss the Bake Off, so Wednesday is out!). On another day, declare it a reading night. A book is not just the way to spend the last half hour before you sleep, it can be an evening activity.

And lastly, take a break when you work! Too much screen time is bad for you. Your eyes get tired, you get a headache, how is that helping your productivity? My personal trick is to work on a laptop at a table or desk and have it unplugged. When the battery runs out, I plug it in (or put my phone on the charging station) and don’t use it. It breaks up your work, and gives you time to tidy up, make yourself a snack, or, you know, read. It’s an easy rule to remember: If your laptop needs recharging, you probably do too.

If reading doesn’t come easily at the moment, don’t try and push it with a dry non-fiction book for work you have had lying around for a while. It’s time to pick a book you won’t be able to resist. A guilty pleasure, or maybe one of the books by celebrities? It may not be fancy or intellectual, but we want entertainment and relaxation! A good thriller or a romance maybe. Miranda Hart is getting a new book published in October, Yes, my accent is real is still very much a best seller and Are you there, vodka? It’s me, Chelsea by Chelsea Handler is a few years old but still worth a read.

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