Books, magazines, newsletters, oh my! There is no shortage of things to read! The cold, hard fact is that most likely you won’t ever be able to read all of the items you need to or want to. There simply aren’t enough hours in the day – no matter how fast you read. And if you keep collecting reading material, most likely you will feel guilty about what hasn’t been read and you may feel overwhelmed by the piles and stacks.
Here are a couple of strategies that may help decrease “reading overwhelm”:
- Read it: if you want to read, then you need to make time in your schedule to read. It is rare to just “have time to read” so you have to be deliberate.
- Mark it: as soon as you receive a magazine, check the table of contents and mark the articles that look worthy of your time to read. A bolder step is to remove the articles you are interested in and recycle the magazine. Use a highlighter and pen to mark important ideas or jot down action items as you read.
- Recycle it: whether you have read it or not, it can be recycled. Hopefully your community has a recycling program for papers. Books can be donated to libraries or sold at second-hand bookstores. By the way, will you really read that book again, or would the book like to have someone else read it?
- File it: only if you think you will reference an article again. BUT, remember that you probably can’t file everything unless you have unlimited space. Keep in mind that information changes quickly and can be accessed in many places.
You’ll notice I didn’t even mention information that comes in via internet, e-readers, smartphones, etc. It’s a topic for another day! But suffice it to say, we have enough information to read to last use several lifetimes. And while you’ve read this post, more articles and other information have been added to your list!
Let Minding Your Matters® know if we can help you create a better strategy to overcome information overwhelm!