Winding down with a good book can be very relaxing—but what happens when it's too relaxing? Sometimes you want to dig into a book to pass them time, but you don't want to drift off to sleep! Whether you're comfy on your couch, traveling on an airplane or subway, or sitting at work or school, you want to be able to consume a few paragraphs without dozing off.
It seems I'm not the only one with this problem! Here are some great suggestions from community members to help you enjoy a few chapters instead of the back of your eyelids:
- Go mobile. Reading on our smart phones, laptops or tablets helps to keep eyes dilated, alert and focused. Being online usually requires more interaction so our bodies are less likely to shut down and enter into energy saving mode.
- Multi-tasking reading. If you're dozing off while reading, you're likely a multi-tasker and your body is used to doing several things at once to keep energized and awake. Try mutli-tasking when reading—like taking notes while reading a textbook, listen to music while taking in a good book, or ride a stationary bike while skimming through a magazine.
- Take breaks and digest. Read small sections at a time, then take a break, think about what you read so it sticks, and then go back and read another small section. It will take more time to get through a book but this method will help keep you awake, whil
- e still consuming the information.
- Keep your head up. With books and electronics, we tend to look down to read, which relaxes our bodies and slows our breathing, helping us drift off to sleep. Try reading at eye level, keeping your chin level with the ground, to stay alert.
- Stay active. Reading usually takes a lot of work from your eyes and brain, but not so much from the rest of your body. To help you body stay awake, tap your foot or hand, shake your leg, or chew a piece of gum to stay active and occupied while reading.
- Make a visit to the eye doctor. If you are not wearing glasses or contacts, or have an outdated prescription, it's possible that your eyes could be working in overdrive to focus. Having the right prescription will put less of a strain on your eyes and help you stay awake while reading.
- Embrace noise and light. Read in a setting that is almost distracting—just enough to keep you awake, but not enough to actually distract you from your reading! Make sure your reading area is well lit, and there is an element of background noise to keep your mind and body alert.
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