One of the best parts of reading is slipping into another experience or a different world. While this is a great joy, we can also enjoy different reading benefits with mindful reading techniques. Mindful reading techniques include strategies that help us dive deeper into and ground us through the reading experience. Keep reading to get a quick introduction to these techniques.
Choose a Reading Strategy
The first step of any mindful reading technique is to determine the goal of your reading. Are you reading to find a source for a paper or presentation? Are you reading because you want to write similar books? Are you reading because you’re interested in the plot and characters?
Once you know why you’re reading, you can choose a reading strategy that will help you accomplish your goal. For example, the paraphrasing strategy is a good way to check your understanding of potential paper or presentation sources. Meanwhile, the reading-like-a-writer strategy helps you recognize authorial choices and determine whether you want to make similar choices when you write. Lastly, the mapping strategy provides a visual component to reading so you can literally see how characters and plot points connect back to the central theme of the story.
There are other strategies you can use to achieve your reading goal, such as skimming and rhetoric reading. You will need to determine the best strategy to achieve your goal based on your learning style and what you’re reading.
Practice Activity Meditation
Reading strategies make you more aware of what you’re reading. Mindfulness activities such as meditation make you more aware of the present moment you’re in. You can meditate and read at the same time. Combining the two into an activity meditation lets you focus on your reading while appreciating yourself and the situation you’re in.
To activity meditate while reading, you should focus on your senses and how your body feels. You can place one hand on your chest while the other holds your book to notice how you’re breathing. As you take deep breaths, notice any smells and how they make you feel. Pay attention to how the surface of a pen or pencil feels in your hands as you write down your reading strategy. Notice what you can hear over the sound of your breathing and the pages turning. If your mind wanders away from your reading or the present moment, gently bring it back.
Read in a Comfortable Space
While you can read and practice activity meditation anywhere, you will feel your best in a comfortable space. A comfortable space will eliminate outside distractions. Ideally, it will also contain everything you need to complete your reading strategy and meditation, such as your reading material, pen and paper, your favorite candle, and a soft blanket. With these necessities and comforts close by, you can better focus on your reading and meditation.
We hope this quick introduction to mindful reading techniques gives you an idea of how you can get more out of your reading experience. If you’re looking for a candle store online to help with your meditation or make your reading area more comfortable, Frostbeard Studio is here. Our soy candles provide fun scents for booklovers that will harmonize your space.