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Make time for what you love


I'm currently reading Fahrenheit 451 in my spare time.


Just like I write every day, I read for pleasure every day. In Stephen King's On Writing, he recommends this practice, and while it's not easy, anything can become habit-forming if you do it enough.


As a high school English teacher, I constantly read material for work. In AP Lit class, I'll read Frankenstein, while in Junior English, I'll be running my eyes through Tuesdays with Morrie. All of this happens while I do my best to keep fresh on the latest news so that I can stay relevant as a journalism instructor. So how do I find time to read and write for myself during a busy school year? I make time.


People have more time in their days than they may realize. For example, my students always say they're busy at home, but they also tell me they spend, on average, over ten hours a day on their phones. People will tell me that there aren't enough hours in a day, but they are the first to rattle off several Netflix shows they are currently watching.


Always use time wisely. I tell my students to use as much class time as possible to get homework done. "I'll just do it at home," they say. But I know their chances of doing it there are even worse than finishing it in class. If you want to set aside time to exercise, why not make time to listen to that audiobook while you're doing your cardio? Or why not make time to listen to new music that you have always been saying you will?


This leads me to how I fit in time for daily reading and writing. I don't allow myself to stay up too late. This makes it so I can get up by 4:30 at the latest, have a leisure breakfast and concentrate only on writing for at least a half-hour. There are no distractions in the house. The only sound is that of my fingers on the keyboard.


I always find time to read my latest work on the car ride to work as far as reading goes. Because I'm carpooling, I pull out my phone, open my Scribd app, and read around 20-30 pages. When I was driving, I would listen to audiobooks. I would usually knock out a book every couple of weeks this way.


All I have to do is think about how I will manage my time throughout the day. Many people want to sleep until the last possible minute, and I get that. But think about how you are using other points in your day. Do you go home and mindlessly scroll through social media?


Reading every day helps me in my writing. I get exposed to new styles, and it gets me over writer's block to help me form my unique voice. If you're a writer and don't read, it will be hard for you to grow in your craft.


So, find the time for what you love to do. Even though I get up super early, my days feel much more fulfilled.

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