Return to Reading: How to Revive a Love for Books During an Academic Break


The past four months have been a frenzy of work, school, and extracurriculars, leaving little to no time to enjoy other activities in one’s spare time. At the end of another school year, I am once again left incredibly behind on my reading goals with little motivation to try and pursue them. As we all recover from a semester full of reading textbooks and writing papers, it can be incredibly challenging to dive back into reading, even for enjoyment. With that being said, here are some tips I’ve found useful in the past as I attempt to get back into reading over break!

After months of writing and reading formal, academic papers, the prospect of picking up a heavy-toned novel might seem pretty daunting. It’s important to remember that reading in your spare time can and should be for your personal enjoyment! The best way to ease back into reading is to start with something you know you will enjoy; otherwise, at least in my own personal experience, you might get burnt out or bored of reading before you even truly begin. 

Similar to the previous tip, make sure to remember that picking up a book should be something that excites you, not something that brings dread. Unlike with the academic readings so prevalent in school, there should be no pressure to force yourself to read anything that doesn’t spark your interest or enthusiasm. The quickest way to kill a passion for reading is by pressuring yourself to finish a book no matter how little you enjoy it. 

Personally, I hate the feeling of trying to read while I have a million other thoughts racing through my head (a major reason why enjoying a book during the school year is very difficult). I always find it helpful to find certain blocks in my day where I can dedicate myself solely to reading, unburdened by external distractions. Even if it’s only for 15 minutes, it can be incredibly helpful to set aside time for yourself to read without having to worry about anything else. Similarly, a comforting space makes all the difference. (If you don’t believe me, try reading in a stiff-backed chair versus a comfortable couch, and report back.) Finding the right time and space to enjoy a book can be incredibly beneficial and will likely make reading a more enjoyable and mindful experience. 

Enjoying a book can look different for everyone! The way we process information varies from person to person (and even genre to genre). Trying to force yourself to only read physical novels can really limit your options, and an argument can be made that experiencing stories in these varied formats can really enhance your experience rather than detract from it. 

Some of my favorite reads have been found by asking friends what they love. Looking to loved ones for new book ideas can be a great way to explore new genres and titles that you might not have previously considered. Reading is at its best when it is a community experience, and a shared love for books can bring people together in a beautiful way!

Sam Parker, Pine Reads Review Writer