The day you become a better reader

A while ago I read a book called The Power Of Habit by Charles Duhigg, and from that point I started to notice some bad habits and tried to correct them–not successfully all the times. Pretty recently I started again to try to find bad habits and create a new ones. And to my surprise, I found one which is hardwired in our brains: starting a book means you’ve got to read the whole thing.
I was aware of that problem. I even wrote about it. But I had to get stuck reading to notice that this thing is hardwired in our brains as hell.
Ironically, I’ve also said that sometimes you’ve got to be patience with books because at some point the good stuff will come out. And that’s a huge mistake. So first lesson to be aware of…:
On average, books that start poorly end up being a waste of time. Great books start grabbing your attention.
So what was the painful experience that made me write another post about this topic?
I’m not going to pe deep into habits (you should read one or two books on the topics though), but if there’s something to remark about them is this: do not take them slightly, especially if they’re hardwired.
What I’ve realized (again and again) is that once you’re not into a book, you stop reading. And I mean you stop reading altogether. Because reading books from cover to cover is so ingrained in our brains, you’d feel guilty if you don’t finish the book, so you stop reading.
What can you do about it?
Well, if you think about it, you don’t treat blogs in that way, do you? You don’t feel the obligation of reading an article you’re not enjoying, or for that matter a whole site. So what you can do with books is to treat them like if they were blog posts. Read a couple of chapters (you don’t even have to start from the beginning) and decide whether the book is worth your time.
If after a few pages you’re not into it, put that book down on the shelf or delete it from your kindle and move on. No hard feelings.
Thus, you just read the very best books, or just get the main idea of the book.
Most books–and this is particularly true for business books–have more pages than necessary. In the end they have to justify why you pay 20 bucks for it and the transportation to the book store. Which is ridiculous. So if a chapter doesn’t get you anywhere jump to the next one. If the next one doesn’t bring you any value put it down.
We’ve been taught in school to finish books, it’s hardwired in us. But I think we should stop reading more books and get to the ones that deserve our time.