We often read for entertainment, information or to occupy our mind.
Mindfulness of reading brings an extra quality to the reading experience. Such reading contributes to calmness, clarity and insight. The mindful reading experience supports a depth of learning.
This approach to the reading experience considers the posture. The upright posture takes priority with two feet firmly on the floor rather than leaning back in the chair. Reading less with focus often brings much more benefit in the mindful reading experience.
The reader takes their time in reading to absorb the words rather than hurrying to reach the end of the article, critique or chapter.
Mindful reading, a full presence to the written word on paper or on screen, provides the opportunity for the written word to touch deep within.
We may experience a visceral response to a sentence, paragraph or theme whether in a poem or novel. All manner of writing has the potential to trigger a sudden discovery or an inspiration for action.
Reading experience can enhance the quality of our life, wake us up to fresh ways of looking at things. There is the opportunity to take our time reading the page with a commitment to coming back to those lines which mattered to us.
When we understand the words of the writer, we might come back to the same essay, book or poem to discover fresh insights, fresh levels of understanding and inspiration.
Literature has the capacity to reveal significant truths to us providing we give whole-hearted interest to the text and, if useful, reflect on the depths of the words or intimations in the words.
10 Points for Mindful Reading
- Develop your reading experience for clarity, insight and inspiration.
- Focus on reading what supports your deep interests.
- Be mindful of excessive news reading/viewing/listening as it can feed a negative view of life.
- Your time in silence and presence will support you reading.
- Know the difference between reading as a distraction and reading with genuine purpose.
- Read slowly to absorb the words rather than quickly for information.
- If appropriate, read aloud a sentence or two important for you to aid remembering.
- Write down the page number/line or put a dot in column to read again the sentence or paragraph you found helpful.
- Engage in research online or books of themes you found supportive.
- Write a summary or share with another, perhaps 100 words after or a minute or two, of the benefit you experienced from the book, essay, poem or novel.