When I was younger, I used to be an avid reader and loved detective books. One of my favourites was the Hardy Boys series. I enjoyed following Joe and Frank through the many adventures they had.
As I grew, my focus moved more towards textbooks as the pressure to do well in school was ever-present. More time had to be dedicated to revision and challenging assignments.
I couldn’t justify reading for fun when there was work to be done.
Catching the Reading Bug
In my final year of university, I caught the reading bug again when a friend introduced me to motivational and personal development books. I found books by Les Brown and Robert Kiyosaki very compelling. So many ideas and insights I hadn’t engaged with for most of my academic life.
This led me to be purchasing many books over the years as I had a lot to catch up on once Uni was over. Unfortunately, I only managed to read a handful of these books. I could visualize the knowledge the books would bring but didn’t have the time to read them. Some of these books were THICK which was off-putting, so I gravitated towards audio versions.
I came across Audible which was a great solution for me. I could easily listen to a book a week while commuting or just doing chores around the house. I highly recommend the 24-book yearly subscription for just over £100. The £100 investment in your personal investment is priceless. Definitely cheaper than what you spend on university tuition.
What I discovered reading on a weekly basis was that most books had 3 or 4 take-away ideas that can impact your life. Sadly you have to read through the whole book to get at these gems. My search for a way to get summarised versions of books led me to Blinkist.
What is Blinkist
Blinkist is a service that summarizes books into 15-minute bite-sized chunks. It offers best-selling books on different topics from world-renowned authors.
It feels like cheating, but you get the full content from the books. I can truly say reading is now a joy. I have read some of my favourite books several times as a result.
How I use Blinkist
I have been using Blinkist for the last year, and I average about four books a day, that’s about an hour a day listening/reading. I highly recommend trying out speed reading as you can complete a 15-minute book in just under 10 minutes at 1.5x speed.
I didn’t realise how slow audiobooks were until I tried speed listening. My preferred listening speed is 2x, and it’s amazing how normal it sounds to be now.
I summarize each of the books in a paragraph in my notes app for future reference. The mind is not a good place to keep ideas so write them down.
I average about 30 books a week, and that is surprisingly almost 1,500 books a year.
This is how I read above 1,000 books a year.
I find these numbers mind-blowing being able to absorb so much information from different authors and topics. I’ve read books I never thought of reading but because I knew it would only take me 15mins, why not. Books on health, finance, autobiographies, psychology, history, technology, religion and many more.
As a dad of three, it can be very busy to find free time. Listening to audiobooks has been one of the best things to help me develop personally and professionally. I have been able to able to listen to books that have changed my life while I was doing the weekly shopping.
No matter how busy you are, we all have at least 15 minutes in a day to listen to an audiobook. If you are struggling to find 15 minutes, then you don’t have a life.
One book can change the course of your life and bring new ideas that you never thought attainable. If you only manage to spend 15 minutes listening to one book a week, that is 52 books a year. The average person reads one book a year so you will set yourself apart.
Will the ideas from 52 books a year have an impact on your mindset? Let me know in the comments below