How To Improve Your Reading

Kevin Nokia
7 min readOct 23, 2023

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Photo by Priscilla Du Preez 🇨🇦 on Unsplash

I see that a lot of people, especially in my college, do not enjoy reading.

They see that reading has become a hard activity that could be done. I have problems with reading books too. I sometimes lack focus for reading and don’t plan time for reading, but I still want to read a lot in the future.

So, why is it hard for people today to read?

We sometimes found ourselves reading rules in public places just by scanning them.

From rule number one to rule number five quickly. It’s still hard for us to read, even if it’s just a little bit of text. We can see that a lot of articles and guidance to become better in life have been made on the internet, but still, there aren’t many people reading them at my university.

Reading news on websites is now a hard task. It’s not even up to 5000 words, but it’s still hard for us to read just a little bit.

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Then, I try to find out why people, especially me, find it hard to read effectively.

I found that social media scrolling is affecting our focus. We are getting used to 1 minute of content every day, and it is hard to focus on 5 minutes of reading an article. Every piece of content that we scroll through resets our focus.

Scrolling through social media not only affects our mood because of the content it gives us, but it also gives us a lack of focus.

That’s why we find it hard to not hold our phone or wait for someone without playing our phone (dopamine plays a major role too). I experience that a lot too.

Especially when waiting for someone, though.

Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Unsplash

Scrolling on social media helps us kill time.

When we are waiting for our food or maybe for someone else. We can avoid “looking stupid” rather than just wandering around and not doing anything (well, that’s how my friend sometimes sees someone who’s waiting without their phone).

We have our phone, which could help us become much more “normal” by looking at it while waiting in the corner.

You can see that society affects our use of our phones

So, getting back to reading, we need to decrease our phone usage and increase our focus.

Effective reading could happen if we start practicing our focus and implementing it. If we have problems obtaining the information, for example, if we get distracted a lot, then we might not read the materials or subject effectively.

The problem if we don’t read effectively is that we can’t obtain materials with maximum benefits.

We might get false information from the book, or we might start to hate reading because it seems “hard” and start using our phones more often to avoid that struggle.

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Goals are important

I love to do practical applications so that we can implement them right away.

Reading effectively means we read with focus and implement it. How can we increase our focus then? Before we increase our focus, we might need to know what we are reading.

What our goals are.

Defining our goals in our reading could help us stay on track. We know what we are doing. Not just read things randomly. We start to find the book that correlates with our wants.

Then we can find enjoyment in reading.

Finding the book or certain topics that you want to read is important. If you are interested in fiction, go ahead and read that. You don’t have to bother the society that you need to read “Think and Grow Rich” all the time.

Start reading what you want.

By choosing what you really want to read, you gain control over your life.

You chose what you wanted. That’s an important thing that you need to have in your life. So, keep on doing that!

Hopefully, you can keep on track with the life you really want and make your life much happier.

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Tips to increase your focus and reading

It is not easy to increase our focus right away, but I want you guys to claim that you all have focus in your life.

You have the capability to focus and practice it for a certain amount of time. You might hate to read 5-minute articles, but it’s okay. You can start by reading something for 3 minutes every day.

If it’s still hard, try to read for one minute.

If you still find it hard, try to just open your book every day.

There’s nothing wrong with that. Just keep on doing that consistently, because you are building the foundation now. You are building the habit of opening your book and reading it.

You can’t become an overnight success. Give yourself some time and enjoy your progress.

We have our own time, okay?

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Staring at the wall

This is another way to increase your focus.

Staring at your wall for a certain amount of time can lead you to focus. Give yourself some time to focus on a black dot on your wall, and you might increase your focus by doing so. You are practicing your ability to focus by staring at the wall.

It might seem boring, but by doing that, you are practicing your ability to focus and urge surfing (no craving lasts forever).

We are experiencing boredom and distraction while doing something because we are not focused. If you are focused, you don’t have time to think about that.

You just keep on focusing and doing your activities.

Photo by @felipepelaquim on Unsplash

Online Application

If you don’t like to read with books, I could suggest you use an application on your smartphone.

You can use “Readera” or maybe Kindle. I haven’t tried the Kindle, but Readera is a great application, and it’s free to use. You maybe can’t read everywhere with your book because sometimes you just bring your phone all the time, but you can read your e-book anytime from your phone.

Start reading wherever you are.

Become a reader. Read while you wait for someone. Read while you are bored. Read while you wait for your food in a restaurant.

The more you read, the more likely you are to increase your focus.

In the end, you find yourself reading more and more effectively than most people.

Photo by Susan Q Yin on Unsplash

Reading effectively is hard nowadays.

We found ourselves struggling to focus on a subject or a book that we read. Social media scrolling has made us lack focus. We are not losing our focus; we are just not practicing our focus.

To sum it up:

  1. Find a topic that you really want, and start small.
  2. Read it consistently.
  3. Practice your focus by staring at a wall or a black dot on a wall.

Doing something as simple as reading five minutes per day can help us gain focus and read more effectively.

At the end, you will find yourself increasingly focused, not just on reading but on every activity that you do.

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”

–Dr. Seuss

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Essential Resources for Your Journey 📚

  • My Booknotes (Free) | Download here
    Understand What You Read with Implementation Guide
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    How to Change Your Life with Implementation Guide
  • 30-day Simple Habit Tracker (Free) | Download Here
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Kevin Nokia

I help people replace their scrolling addiction with effective reading habits to improve their focus and attention span. https://substack.com/@kevinnokiawriting