We’ve all been there. You finish a book, look at your TBR and nothing stands out. If you pick a book, you leave it at page 2, distracted. You turn your TV on, go out, check social media, cook, do anything but read and now the book is abandoned on your nightstand or your shelf. Weeks pass by and the book is coated with dust, unmoved. You start feeling guilty, seeing everyone update their reading statuses. What is happening!?
You know it. A dreaded reading slump has arrived and settled in your life. But worry no more! They’re not as bad as you think. We always seem to want to get rid of them, but I’ve found that sometimes fighting them is the wrong approach. So today I’m making my case in defense of reading slumps and why they’re not exactly bad.
I’ve seen a myriad of fantastic posts on how to get out of or avoid a reading slump, but in a reader’s life, I think they’re mostly inevitable. That’s why I’ve decided to look on the bright side of things.
Below I show you some of the causes that have brought reading slumps into my life and why my advice to you if you ever encounter them is to stop reading for a while. Yes, that’s right, a book blogger telling other readers to stop reading sounds insane, but hear me out. I think that every cause has a not-so-hidden meaning that you should really pay attention to.
1. You have a book hangover.
You just finished a book or a series that you love and now everything else seems inconsequential or maybe you read a thought provoking book that makes you feel like you need time to analyze it or make sense of it. Why would you want to push yourself to read something else then? Your reading experience with a book is not over when you turn the last page.
What a reading slump after a book hangover is really telling you is that you should take some some time off on your reading to be able to dwell on that last thing you read and take full advantage of that reading experience. Maybe it’ll inspire you to create some fan-art or blog posts, maybe you decide to research something related to the book and learn something new, or maybe you’ll just daydream about being part of the world in the book, and that’s okay too! In a few days you’ll probably feel like you’ve gather all your thoughts on that read and you’ll be ready to move on with a new perspective, something new learned, or even something artistic created.
2. You are too busy.
Work, school, family or friends’ stuff —you have too much going on to pick a book. You’re constantly thinking of doing something else and you don’t think there’s enough time to sit down and concentrate on reading. Then you should definitely not read! It’ll stress you out if you’re thinking of your to-do list when you’re trying to read, so welcome the reading slump to organize all the things going on in your life. At some point, you’ll have enough time to make yourself grab a book and read at least a page a day.
3. You are dedicating all your reading time to other hobbies.
Maybe you decided to re-watch a favorite show from the start (I’m looking at you Gilmore Girls, I’m definitely looking at you), a new game for the PS just came out, or you’ve been super inspired and can’t stop taking pictures, it could be anything. You don’t have time to do all your hobbies and you’ve left reading behind. That’s totally fine! Give yourself time to explore other activities. If Netflix decided to drop a new season of a cool show and you dedicate a week to it (or days, if you binge-watch them like me), then so be it! Don’t feel bad about it.
What I’m trying to say, to put it simply, is to take advantage of reading slumps. If you love reading, you will go back to it. Maybe you’ll need some inspiration and being part of the bookish community is of great help to find it. In the meantime, don’t feel bad about not reading, it’s definitely not worth it. For me, a reading slump is simply the best time to organize myself, explore other hobbies, or focus on studying or a work project.