Reading is a Lifelong Learning Experience

Over 4th of July Weekend I finished a 300+ page novel. In fact, I did it in just three days without devoting more than 8 or 9 hours total to the book.

It’s been a very, very long time since I’ve read this much in such a short amount of time. I’m not sure if the author was so compelling that I was blazing through the material wanting more or if I was just in the zone and would’ve finished any book in this time. What I do know, however, is that I sincerely miss reading that much.

Let’s take a step back. I used to read a lot of novels in middle school and early high school. Like, at least one a week. And I was happy when I read. I was healthy, I slept better at night, and I felt like my vocabulary expanded a reasonable amount. There was nothing else I would have rather done with a few hours to myself than read. It would get to the point that I would bring my book anytime my parents drove me anywhere (whether it was a two hour drive or just a 15 minute hike down the road to the grocery). I’d say “Hold on, hold on, I’ve got to finish this page” when they would be getting out of the car, and it would get on their nerves at times.

I want to revisit that time in my life by reading as much as I used to. I want to feel like I’m actively gaining knowledge and experiences and analyzing the material I read from multiple perspectives, too. I used to read just for fantasy’s sake, to escape. But now, I want to bring into my life what I read and make it a part of who I am.

There’s much to be said about reading habits, different genres, what sorts of authors you like, and if you’re a fast or slow reader. None of that truly matters if you simply are reading, I believe.

I think buying books is one of the best investments anyone could make, because that single book can be read multiple times by multiple people. It can impart its knowledge and its stories on you many times in your life, each time giving you a new perspective on the same content.

That’s why I use packaging supplies to create makeshift bookmarks and leave my annotations in books. I’ll fold up packing tape as a cheap (i.e., pretty much free) bookmark and I’m known to write little notes within pages on some cheap label tape. Heck, I’ll put label tape on the covers of my books with specific things like “read again in ____” with a year in the blank. Packaging supplies have been a great way for me to enhance my reading experience while also keeping organized enough to know when I last read something and what I learned from it.

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