Do you love reading books?
If so, of course, you will have the question, is it okay to read two books at once?
I will today answer this question in great detail. Along with that, I will also justify my answers with reasons. That is why you can decide on this easily once you go through the article.
In short, is it okay to read two books at once?
Reading two books at once isn’t recommended, because you can get confused between characters, lose interest in one book or find it challenging to go with the flow in both books.
These are the reasons why you shouldn’t read two books at once.
There are a handful of other reasons as well. I will go into the details of all these reasons below. Once you go through these reasons, it is easy to understand why it is better to stick with a single book.
What's Included in This Post
1. Confusion between characters
Any book consists of quite a few things like:
When you’re reading two books at once, you have to remember all these things for both books. The problem is that it is easy to remember the subplot, background but not the characters.
You’re likely to get the characters jumbled. In that case, you cannot enjoy the book at all.
Every time your resume reading, you will be confused.
2. Lack of interest in one book
When you’re reading a single book, it gets your undivided attention. Simultaneously, you will not compare it with any other book. The same is not the case when you’re reading two books at once.
Even if the books are on different topics or in other genres, there will be some comparison. That is because you are consistently reading two books at a time.
The problem with comparison is that both the books cannot be good. That is why you will think that one book is subpar.
When that happens, you will lose interest in one book. Consequently, you will quit that book.
The problem is that even after finishing the book which you like, you will not resume the other one because you have lost interest in that book.
Thus, the book which you quit will never be finished by you.
3. Difficult to go with the flow
Both the books can go through the storyline and subplots at a different pace. That is why you need to adjust the pace at all times.
When you’re reading two books at once, it isn’t easy to go with the flow. You cannot change from one flow rate to another flow rate when you switch between the books.
Lagging behind the flow means you will miss out on things that are mentioned in the book. Consequently, reading them and finishing them is difficult.
4. Less immersive experience
The best way to read a book is to be immersed in it. When you’re constantly visualizing things and following every detail of the book, it is quite entertaining.
If you’re reading it to learn something, it becomes easier for you to learn as well.
You cannot do so when you’re reading two books at once. It can be overwhelming to have an immersive experience in both the books when you’re reading them on the same day.
Consequently, you will have a less immersive experience. It means that you will not even be able to enjoy a single book fully.
5. Takes more time to complete each book
Of course, the time it will take to complete both the books will be more.
If you read a single book consistently, you may complete it in a week. However, if you’re reading two books, it will take a couple of weeks to finish both books.
Moreover, since you might not be able to go with both books’ flow, the time can be even higher.
Who has extra time to spend on books?
It means that you will end up spending much more time reading the two books than if you would have read them individually.
It is one of the main reasons why you shouldn’t read two books at once.
6. Difficult to retain
Whether it is you or me, the retention power which we have is limited.
Moreover, when you’re reading two books at a time, your retention power gets divided further. You might end up not remembering anything at all.
If you do not even remember anything from the books, is it worth it reading two books at once?
Of course not!
It is another reason why it is a good idea to avoid reading two books at once.
7. Lack of execution
Are you planning to execute ideas from the book?
If so, you need to do read the book with complete concentration. When you’re reading two books at a time, you will not focus on any book. Your concentration will get divided into two books.
Due to the same, it will become difficult for you to retain knowledge to execute. Moreover, you cannot execute two different strategies at a time.
The lack of execution means that there is no point in reading the book. As it is, to benefit from the book, you will have to reread it. That is why it is not worth it to read two books at once.
There are numerous reasons why you shouldn’t read two books at once.
It makes sense for readers to read a single book at a time. However, instead of doing so at a normal pace, it is a good idea to increase your reading pace.
Wondering how to do so?
I will highlight the same below as well.
How to read one book, but faster?
The tips which I will highlight below will allow you to read a single book faster.
1. Do not entertain inner monologue
Usually, when you’re reading a book, you might have an inner monologue with yourself. Often-times it is to develop an opinion about the book or your reaction to something happening in the book.
The problem is that inner monologue can reduce your reading speed.
If you want to read faster, it is a good idea to stop this inner monologue.
Still, you can comprehend what you’re reading.
Doing so will increase your reading speed.
2. Keep distractions at bay
The best way to read a book faster is to avoid distractions. When you’re reading a book, distractions not only lead to a pause but also break your link. In that case, you might have to read the last part once again.
Consequently, the time which it will take to read the book will be much higher.
However, once you keep the distractions at bay, you can read faster.
The best way to keep distractions at bay is to keep your smartphone in another room. Once you do so, it becomes easy for you to avoid emails, social media, calls, messages, and so on.
It is a simple tip that can quickly increase your reading speed by 20% to 30%.
3. Read more
Practicing anything can make you better at it. It also means that you can do that thing faster.
The same is valid for reading as well. The more you read, the higher will be your reading speed. In that case, you can complete your book faster as well.
When you read more, you can improve your vocabulary as well. Consequently, it becomes easier for you to go with the flow rather than pause to find words’ meanings.
Thus, the simplest way which you can read faster is to read more.
4. Use a timer
Setting a goal and a deadline can undoubtedly increase your speed and concentration.
You have to decide the number of pages you have to read and the time you have to read those pages. After that, set the timer to track your progress. Once you do so, it will become easier for you to increase your reading speed.
Since you will psychologically have the pressure to complete those pages during that time, you will keep distractions at bay.
This step certainly makes you read faster.
5. Improve your vocabulary
One of the main distractions while reading is to look at the meaning of words and understand the context.
The best way to therefore improve your reading speed is to improve your vocabulary. Once you improve your vocabulary, you will not have to pause to search the meaning of the words.
With these five tips, it will become easier for you to increase your reading speed.
There is another way in which you can increase your reading speed. I will highlight that below.
Focusing on one thing is great… and there is a book about it you have to read.
Humans are not designed for cognitive multitasking. When you’re reading two books at once, there is always a certain amount of cognitive multitasking.
Multitasking can undoubtedly reduce your focus as well.
Do not believe me?
The book “One Thing” by Gary Keller will help you understand why you should stick to a single book.
The book helps you understand why focusing on one thing increases your productivity and your probability of success.
Once you read the book, it is easy to understand why sticking to a single book makes perfect sense.
So, reading two books is certainly not a good idea.
There are quite a few reasons why you shouldn’t read two books at once. If you’re not convinced with the reasons which I have listed above, you can go through the book one thing to know why it is not a good idea to do so.
Consequently, the next time you’re planning to read a book, make sure that you complete a book before starting with another one.