Why You Should Read Less

I’ve noticed an insidious trend.

My friends are reading more and more.

This disgusts me. In their quest to become better at whatever, they’re buying more online courses, watching more YouTube videos, and listening to more podcasts. They’re opting into more email lists. They’re subscribing to more online magazines.

And they’re reading more books. This has to stop.

Check out something I read about reading. One-third of high school graduates never read another book for the rest of their lives. Just less than half of college graduates never read another book after college. I think I heard that sorry statistic on James Altucher’s podcast too.

Oh, so now I’m a hypocrite?

What, is it the fact that I love podcasts and will be working behind the scenes at Podcast Movement, the largest conference for podcasters in the world? Or is it that I’m addicted to Gary Vaynerchuk’s YouTube channel and watch it when I hard dose of reality? Or, possibly, am I a hypocrite because reading Inc. and Entrepreneur is part of my morning routine?

The amount of money I’ve spent on courses and conferences over the three previous years, the 200+ book library scattered throughout my house and bedroom and kitchen and car, the ebooks that rest in my Dropbox account…do any of those things make me a hypocrite?

No. Hard NO.

The great success teacher Jim Rohn once noticed, “Poor people have big TV’s. Rich people have big libraries.”

FYI, I heard him say that in a YouTube video.

Investing in yourself is the best possible investment you can make. Spending money on personal growth can reap huge returns. It’s what I preach, and it’s what I practice. But there’s a catch. Learning in itself doesn’t lead to those huge returns.

Have you ever heard of paralysis by analysis? It’s what happens when you think too much and act too little. Ever heard of information overload? It’s when you’ve consumed too much information to digest.

And this is what’s happening to my friends.

They want to be successful. They want to invest in themselves. But they’re not taking enough action.

Don’t be the person who boasts about reading 30 books but can’t share the major takeaways. Instead, use my super duper secret formula for how to read books like a champ.

Pick up book, read book, put down book, take action.

Lather, rinse, repeat.


My name is Jay, and I let it all hang out on Medium. I’m a 22-year old entrepreneur who enjoys — among other things — reading.

Email me at jay@abcdimpact.com, or check out my latest company ABCD.