working, reading, working, reading, help!

I just started my first ‘grown up’ job! It’s been quite hard juggling reading with a 40 hour job. And that’s not all I’ve been juggling. I’m almost at my 3 month mark and have settled into my worklife, and I think I’ve found a great way to balance everything!

I’ve always worked during my studies. I grew up at boardingschool and wasn’t really able to work at first.. I got my first job at 17 I think? So just before I left boardingschool. And I worked multiple nights and every weekend. During graduate school I had lots of time to read, so I didn’t really appreciate it.. and then I started graduating and it all exploded. I was working a weekendjob, worked nights during the week (bat monitoring), and wrote my thesis during the day. I didn’t really have any time to read.. but I still wanted to, so I pretty much sacrificed the little sleep I had left to read. I knew it had to change when I started my first job, so from me to you, here are some tips to make time for reading!

Prepare your day in advance

This doesn’t mean that you have to plan everything, but you can plan outfits during the weekend or free days. You can prepare food if you have to cook for yourself. Make sure you know where you can find the things you need. That way you don’t spend hours doing things you don’t want to do, or you don’t necessarily have to do. Hours you can spend reading!

Plan your day ahead

And no, this does not mean that you have to plan out every hour of the day, but it helps to know what the rest of the day will look like. If dinner is going to take a long time to make (which it won’t because you prepared the things you could right πŸ˜‰ ), if there are shows you want to watch etc. That way you know what the day has in store for you and you can reserve some time for reading.

Read during your commute

It takes me about an hour to get to and from work, so I conveniently use that time to read. I have an ereader, but my bag is big enough to carry one or two books with me. If you aren’t able to bring books, or read books during your way to and from work, I strongly recommend audiobooks. I tried my first one a while back and they are really awesome! Not every audiobook might be for you, but you can always try some before you decide to go all out! And for those who don’t like audiobooks or who fall asleep listening to them (trust me, it happens, I’m not going to apologize) it’s okay! You don’t have to like them, you just need to find something that will work for you πŸ™‚

Read instead of watching movies/series

This is something that I have to tell myself sometimes. I follow a lot of series and it’s convenient to turn on the tv and watch an episode or 2.. or 5. And it’s truly okay if you like that, I love it! I love reading too, and if I don’t tell myself to choose reading over watching tv, there are weeks I don’t read at all. I can’t tell you that the episodes won’t always be there (they will!), because books will always be there aswell.. but if you don’t start reading, your tbr list will be so big, it can be seen from space. The important thing in choosing between things that make you happy is that in the end you should do what makes you feel happy, but if you want to read more, this is a really good way to start.

Save half an hour before you go to sleep

I used to read before I went to sleep. But now I have to get up at 5.25 am and my sleepingschedule is still fucked up from working nights. I usually spend the evening up in my room so what I do now is just.. stop what I’m doing half an hour before I plan to go to sleep, and read. It works for me, it might work for you too. I usually set an alarm 40 min before I want to go to sleep, so I know to stop and tidy up whatever I was doing at that time and start reading.

It’s okay to not go out sometimes

Starting a new job, I’m constantly meeting new people. I’m an ambivert, I don’t mind meeting new people and I like talking to people, but I need time to recharge. I get cranky when people talk too much, when its all onesided. But I still feel a bit pressured to go out, get to know everyone, to ‘immerse’ myself into my new environment. I have to remind myself that I don’t have to go out every week, I am allowed to stay home, do nothing all night, just take a bath, climb in bed, and read!

It’s also okay to not read for a while

I’m part of the bookstagram community, and now also the bookblogger community, and sometimes I feel like I should read every book that’s published. All the anticipated reads, because how can I talk about books with other bookstagrammers and bookbloggers if I haven’t read the books? And then I stop myself. Being part of these communities doesn’t require me reading everything, it’s about having fun. It’s about reading what I like, because reading is something I love.

And that brings me to the bottomline of this post. While it can be hard to balance a full time job, you should free some of your time to do things you love. If that’s reading, or watching series, or anything else. Because if you don’t do things you love, where is your life going? And my life isn’t just working and reading, it’s working out and cleaning the house, and go shopping and all these other things. But just try different things and hopefully you’ll find something that works for you.

I can always use more tips and tricks since I know not everything works for everyone, so if you know of something that might help me or others, you’re welcome to share!

Until next time,

33 thoughts on “working, reading, working, reading, help!

  1. Sam || Fictionally Sam says:

    My soul left my body with the time you wake up in the morning Michelle. That hurt, that hurt alot. You need sleep, go back to sleep. shhhhhhhhh

    This is such a great post full of good advice for those starting out in the “adult” world, low key wish this was here for me when I graduated, cause hot tamale was that a time of trying to juggle all the things. I personally make sure to read during my commute to and from work (as I’m currently not driving yet) and I like to carve out 2-3 hours before bed to mellow out and read all the things. That majority of where I get my reading done…well that and sneak reading while bossman isn’t watching πŸ˜›

    Liked by 1 person

    • Michelle says:

      SLEEP IS FOR THE WEAK. No seriously, I don’t need that much sleep πŸ€” but damn girl, 2-3 hours before bed, I get home 2-3 hours before I go to bed πŸ˜‚ (that’s not true but.. 2-3 after I cook myself dinner). And you sneak away, if they make you wear heels, you can read all you want πŸ’•


  2. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious says:

    Yay for finding your groove with your first ‘grown up’ job! This list has a lot of great recommendations for how to find time to read — I’ve found that if I don’t carve out time specifically for it (my nightly routine is reading in bed starting by 9pm until I fall asleep!) then I tend to zone out on netflix. As weird as it sounds, I wish I had a commute so I could take advantage of audiobooks but I literally live 2 miles from work lol. Great post, Michelle!


  3. Isabelle @ BookwyrmBites says:

    OMG boarding school is one of those experiences I wish I had … along with being a twin/triplet πŸ˜… yay for living vicariously through books, haha.

    reading instead of TV has probably been my predominant strategy lately, I’m behind on all my shows but I’ve gotten through a decent portion of my TBR. now I’m wondering whether there’s a way to train yourself to be able to follow along with audiobooks, because I really really wish they worked for me. I tried them out one summer, but by the end I only had a rough idea of what happens in The Secret History and now I need to find the time to reread that brick of a novel in print (probably ebook, but you know what I mean). hm.

    I guess you really do make time for the things you want to do, but it’s definitely not good to sacrifice long-term health (though most of us are probably guilty of this at least occasionally, myself included πŸ‘€) – thanks for sharing better ways to secure reading time!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Michelle says:

      Oh Isabelle, I’m going to write a post about how boardingschool is nothing like the books :’) Because trust me, it’s not. It was a terrible experience for me 😦

      You’re absolutely right though about not sacrificing long-term health, and I do make time to take care of myself. But I’m too scared to take my book with me when I take a bath so I opt for a quick shower instead xD Though that might me more short-time health

      Liked by 1 person

  4. anathadad says:

    This is so great! I am going through a similar dilemma, it also gets harder when you have to also devote time to a SO or a pet(I have a GSD and his energy needs are high). Glad you are figuring out, I have been doing the same thing with trying not to watch as much TV and reading before bed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Michelle says:

      YOU HAVE A GERMAN SHEPHERD?!?!?!? I grew up with them and they are awesome!! But yeah, they need a lot of attention and lots of walks :p I’m glad you’re finding the time to read a bit though! I just hope I can keep it up :’)

      Liked by 1 person

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