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2 Rules For Reading Effectively For Strong Outcomes

2 Rules For Effective And Strategic Reading For Strong Outcomes

You and I have come across one of the messages that promotes to reading:

  • Readers are leader Or leaders are readers
  • The more you read, the more you succeed (or lead)
  • CEOs read 52 books a year and so should you

All of the above messages are not entirely correct because with one type of reading, reading more is actually your enemy

When it comes to reading, there are 2 rules to follow if you want to benefit from reading. One rule is, more is more, and it applies with information and pleasure types of reading. The other rule is, less is more, and it applies with self-development type of reading. These 2 rules are the strategy to follow according to the type of reading you have.

Relation to Wellbeing

Learning is one of the key tools in the mental wellbeing toolkit as it supports us decreasing the stress by knowing how to solve a problem or upgrade what we have.

Reading is one of the tools we use to learn, and just like any tools, if not used right, it can slow our progress or even worse, it can backfire.

That’s why it’s important to learn the right strategies when it comes to the different reading types, so you can get the most out of your reading and achieve the goal behind it which will upgrade your wellbeing.

Otherwise, it’s going to be like digging a hole with a spoon or making a sandwich with a shuffle.

Now, before we get to the rules of reading, it’s only logical to first know the types of reading that you can have and apply the specific rule for.

Types of reading

1- Information

This is the type of reading you do to gain knowledge and have more information about one or many topics.

This can be the studying you do in school or college or afterwards for your masters or other certificates you pursue.

This can also apply when you’re reading for non-academic and non-work-related information. Like reading scientific journals or magazines or newspapers or blogs.

2- Pleasure

This is the type of reading you do to engage your emotions. This covers novels mainly. You’re reading them to escape reality and inject yourself with the main characters to live with them till you reach the end cover of the novel.

You’ll laugh, cry, get sad, get confused, get scared, and in the end, your emotional and creative bars will be more charged.

3- Self-Development

This type of reading is self-explanatory I believe. This is the reading you do to improve yourself on all levels. You read those books to have a better life than the one you’re living right now.

This type of reading is crucial to improve your problem-solving skills as most books in this category are either directly related to problem solving, like how to be a public speaker, or how to win friends, etc.

Or indirectly related like, learning about growth mindset, or the power of why. These books might not represent themselves with problem solving but learning these skills like mindset or identifying the purpose can be used as tools to solve problems.

So now that we understood the different types of reading, what are the rules that I recommend you follow for each of those types?

Rules of reading

There are 2 rules I recommend to any one I’m coaching on the topic of reading for the above 3 types of reading and knowing them is important as they are going to be among the reasons why reading can be stressful to you.

First rule: More is More

It means, the more you read, the more results and benefits you’ll get.

This applies to 2 types of reading: Information and Pleasure


The more you read, the more information you’ll have. The more you read and study your materials, the higher degrees and more success chances you’ll have in your final examinations.

The more informative magazines, or newspapers you’ll read, the more information you’ll have about the topics you’re interested in following.

So, if your goal from reading is to have more information, then more reading is your strategy.

What happens if you don’t follow this rule?

Not following this strategy for this goal, is one of the reasons why reading stresses you out.

It’s because you’re reading with insufficient outcomes which leads to increased stress levels and with time, reading will be stressful.

What you have to realize is that “more” reading is required for that goal


The more novels you read, the more feelings you’ll experience and the more emotionally you’ll be engaged.

This is just like movies or music. The more you watch, play, or listen to them, the more emotionally charged you’ll be.

I didn’t say “the happier you’ll get”, because it depends on the genre of movie you watched or book you read, which can contain sad content, but overall, your emotional status will be higher than before.

So, if your goal is to engage your emotions more and more, then more reading is the strategy to follow.

What happens if you don’t follow this rule?

Unlike information type of reading, less reading for pleasure won’t have big impact on your life since there’s no definite goal to charge your emotions to a certain degree or finish X number of novels in a given time.

With information type, it’s more common to have a deadline where you must have an accepted amount of knowledge or information prior to it. It’s not the case with pleasure reading.

Second Rule: Less is More

It means, the less you read, the more results you will have. It puts emphasis on giving more time to act on what you have learnt.

It applies to one type of reading which is the Self-development one.


 I explain it in my coaching sessions, that this is based on my observation to myself and others, that when it comes to self-development, the heavy load is more on “applying” what you have learnt and less on “more reading”.

How it works?

When you read for self-improvement, you work on a 5 steps ladder to mastery and each step has its own benefit and stressor.

Just reading takes you to the 3rd step which has the benefit of knowing about the topic you want to use to improve your life.

Now reading has served its purpose, this is as far as you get with reading. To get closer to mastering that tool you want to learn, you have to start applying and practicing

If your goal is to improve yourself in public speaking for example, then you want the minimum reading that get you enough information, and more practicing in front of others.

And the more you apply and practice those principles, the more capable you’ll get, which leads to more confidence and more experience and therefore, mastery and more results.


Reading makes information, and Application makes transformation

WellBeing Toolkits

What happens if you don’t follow this rule?

Reference to the ladder to mastery, reading only takes you as far as the 3rd steps which has the stressor of “self-doubting”. Here you’re doubting the information you have and your ability to act on what you have learnt.

With time, this can be one of the reasons that lead to you believing that self-help books don’t work, but the problem here is actually with you.

Check Why Don’t Self-Help Books Work As You Expect” to know the 6 reasons why they’re not working and how to make it work for you to improve your life.

You can also check Is Spending Money On Books Worth It? (How Much Is Wise)


  • There are 3 types of reading: information, pleasure, and self-development
  • There are 2 rules for the reading types: More is More with information and pleasure types of reading. Less is more with self-development type of reading
  • The more you read in schools, the more you know the subject and pass the exam, and similarly for college, postgraduates, courses, and relevant areas.
  • The more you read articles, studies, magazines, the more knowledge you’ll have for those topics.
  • The less self-help books you read, the more time you’ll have to apply what you have learnt and the more you’ll see results
  • Self-development is more about more application rather than more reading.

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