Audiobook How to ReadARs Reading

Audiobooks — What to do & What not to do — Part 1

Hey ReadARs

Here’s the first part of audiobooks, what to do and what not to do and everything here on a very Monday morning.

When to listen.

I usually listen to audiobooks when I’m doing something else.

When I say something else, I’m doing something like running, or working out, or when I’m driving a car, or when I’m in a cab, and it’s night time, so reading inside the cab is obviously not so possible.

I also listen to them when I’m also doing some household chore, or when I’m brewing my coffee. So I plug into audiobooks when I’m doing something else.

But not when I’m doing something very intensive, or you know, cognitively, my mind is required somewhere else. So if I’m running a program or coding it, no, no, not at all.

So when I’m doing something where my mind is not being utilized fully, okay, I listen to audiobooks.

Step 1 — “find your slot” to listen to audiobook.

That’s why you will see a lot of people listen to audiobooks when they are walking, or when they are driving, so passively listening. Remember this word, passively listening.

How long to listen to audiobooks at one stretch?

Actually, this is where a lot of people make a lot of mistakes. They go on a long stretch, their journey is one and a half hours long, and they will continue listening to the audiobook, not realizing somewhere around 20th to 30th minute mark, they would have actually stopped listening. And then they just let the book continue.

Even though we have two ears and one mouth, we have poor listeners. In fact, listening to audiobooks improves you as a listener, okay. That’s a very intangible, but very powerful benefit of audiobooks.

But your mind also has a cognitive limit, where it will stop really listening in. That sweet spot is between 20th to 30th minute mark. As you build that practice in, as you build your reps in, you’ll go from 20 to 30, okay. 20 is still a very sweet spot. Keep this 20 in mind as well.

What speed to listen?

Now, this is where again, there’s a lot of BS around, where what you should listen to 2x or 2.5x above, because you should quickly complete the book, there’s so many books out there. Yeah, they would have their own school of philosophy, I consider that as BS. I still believe 1.5x is the final point, okay. Obviously, to each their own.

The speed range, which I find very helpful is 0.85x to 1.25x.

I’ll explain to you when.

If I’m running, if the world around me is moving faster when I’m running, or when I’m driving, so the world around me is moving faster, okay. That’s when I bring the speed down to 0.85x. That’s when I slow down the audio book so that because the world around me is moving fast, I can grasp a little bit better.

When I’m at home brewing my coffee, or when I’m in a cabin, I can literally close my eyes and slow the world down for myself, I go to 1 or 1.25x.

You find your suitable listening speed. As I said, we are poor listeners, so don’t go over the top.

I barely use 1.5x in reserve scenarios where I’ve gone through the book already, maybe I’ve read it, I’ve already heard it, and I’m re-going through it, so that’s not the right word, but nevertheless. I’m going through it again, so that’s when I maybe, occasionally, I go to 1.5x.

Anything more than that, it won’t make sense. If you are at too high speed, all you will listen to it is Tape Recorder in Fast Forward Mode.

What not to do when listening to an audiobook?

  1. Avoid Audiobook while doing something very cognitive.
    I skip audiobooks when I am doing an intense activity where your mind has to be involved.
  2. So if you are driving a two-wheeler, I will tell you to avoid audiobooks. It should be strictly avoided anyways, but a lot of people still keep their earphones in. In a car, it’s relatively safer, but obviously in a car, don’t put your airpods on, okay. If you are in a car and listening, put it on the speaker, rather, so that you still have some sense left to drive, okay. Don’t fully smash your senses in.
  3. Avoid regression.

    See, audiobook is about exploring, it’s about soaking the information in. You are not going to retain everything out of it, okay. You are going to be like a sponge, which will retain what it wanted, and then everything else will drain off. This is also where the point of not going beyond 20-30 minutes comes into play. Your mind is only going to be able to soak some information.

    So avoid continuously keep going back 30 seconds or 60 seconds or back and forth. A small chapter will become huge if you do so. This is called regression. Avoid regression as much as you can.

    The only time I do this, okay, so there is also a caveat for everything in life. So if I’m running and the author has said something, wow, okay. Now because I’m running, my mind is still on the road and traffic around and stuff. So if the author has said something, wow, I would go back and do that 30 seconds back or 60 seconds back. I will set the settings to 60 seconds back. So if I just click a button while the audio book is playing, I can go 60 seconds back and listen to the entire portion of it. I do think 30 seconds is the best place because you don’t have to additionally listen. But in 60 seconds, it will give you a little bit of context. So I do regress sometimes, but it’s very, very rare. Only in a scenario when I’m doing something else and I missed. The rest of the time, go past. The audio book is about just soaking in.

Last but not the least, make a quick scribble of two minutes or three minutes after your listening session.

I’ll expand into it on how to retain better with the audio books in the part two of this video, which should come to you on a Tuesday morning, that is tomorrow.

After any listening session, just scribble what you heard in two or three quick minutes. Don’t try to make a whole summary essay out of it. But don’t try to ignore it either.

These two or three minutes, when combined with your 20 to 30 minutes of listening session, just are going to change the game for you. They’re not only going to make you a better listener, a better retainer of information, but it changes the way you look at audio books and reading and books, all sorts of knowledge and information as well.

So, yeah, this is what you have to do. This is the first quick video of do’s and don’ts of audio books. Part two of this will come tomorrow morning. So, watch it. That one will be a short one. I’m just setting this up for all of you.

P.S — Do the audible settings as well. Go to audible. If you’re on audible, go to settings. It’s on the top right corner, three lines. Click there, settings. Just go to the general and playback speed. That 30 second or 60 second thing, whichever you’re going to be more comfortable with. I’m comfortable with 60 seconds. The default setting, I think, is 30 seconds. If you’re fine with default, let it be. Don’t overdo.

That’s it for today. Thank you.
Let me know in the group if this video was helpful for you.


Let’s Read Socially!

“Do Epic Shit”
“Get Epic Shit Done”

Reading Alone is Boring

Reading Socially is engaging, interactive & fun!

So how about we Read these two “Epic” books by the One & Only Ankur Warikoo.

Please note – You will have to buy these two books on your own.

You can buy both these books here

Book Club ReadARs Reading

Notion & ReadARs

It took me a while to adopt Notion.

Back in 2020, I had estimated that Notion will grow into something big.

But until 2022 arrived, I couldn’t move my arse out of the comfort zone of using basic note-making apps.

2022 was when I began using Notion.

In 2023, I am doubling my usage of Notion.

To share my knowledge with my beloved community of ReadARs, I am kickstarting a series of sessions on Notion.

Session 1 — 18th January at 9 PM IST
Session 2 — 19th January at 9 PM IST

Sign-up for these sessions here 👇

5 years from now, every big corporate organization will be using Notion.

Why not you get started way ahead of them
(& before you are forced to adopt it)

Book Club Reading

The ReadARs Club Elite

Time has arrived for all of us to chart out the next leg of the Growth Journey as members of The ReadARs Club

Introducing to all of you — The ReadARs Club Elite.

Here’s how Elite would be a game-changer for the ReadARs —


A topic specific cohort ranging between 2-4 weeks.

Great Readers Write — 4 Week Mini-Cohort designed to help Readers level-up their Reading Game via the power of Writing, coupled along with Accountability and Audience-driven metrics.

Atomic Learning — 4 Week Mini-Cohort designed to help you level-up your skillsets by learning every day through the Self-Paced Courses.

Habit Tracking 2.0 — Yes I was wrong to not continue further with the erstwhile Habit Tracking Group. I am resuming it with a pledge that I will keep making the entire process of Habit Tracking more effective every month.


1-2 hour workshops spaced intermittently

Read — Better, Faster, Smarter

Continuous Learning Program to refresh & enhance your Reading skills. Total of 12 Workshops that lie in store for the ReadARs.

DG — Build your Digital Garden

Call it Digital Garden or call it Second Brain. 2023 is a year where I want all the ReadARs to compulsorily build one of their own. Even if it inefficient (and it will be); even if it is not beautiful (Great Gardens don’t get built overnight)

EATS — Manage Energy, Attention, Time & Smartphone Better.

Guest Events

Earlier this year, I called in Sathya & Jill Metcalfe to deliver their keynotes on Mind-Maps & Notion at the ReadARs Annual Summit

Well I am doubling-up on that.

I will be leveraging my connections & invite them as external speakers to deliver a keynote on topics that matter to each of us.

Oh yes! I intend to get Authors to join in & Elite members would get to be a part of it.

Get Paid!

Who here would hate to make some money to buy all the wonderful books from? I wouldn’t.

Get Paid to be an Alumni Guide

Get Paid to play official roles.

Get Paid as an Affiliate & get your friends/connections join into the Reading Habits Cohorts

Curious to know the Schedule of Mini-Cohorts, Workshops & Guest Events. Here you go 👇

Let’s address the Elephant in the Room — Pricing

Membership will be valid for one year effective from 01-01-2023 till 31-12-2023

I intend to open-up The ReadARs Club Elite for the world outside this year. Their pricing will be 2X the pricing tier of the ReadARs.

If you are game-on for being part of The ReadARs Club Elite, DM me on Whatsapp so that I could initiate the Onboarding Process for you.

If you don’t feel like paying for one year membership —

I will be moving you out of TRC and will be subsequently adding you to a low-noise channel (tentatively called The ReadARs Hub)

The purpose of this channel is so that you don’t lose touch with your identity as a Reader. This channel will also have Free GRPs occasionally.

We have only got 3 days left in this 2022.

Ample Time to make one decision for your 2023.

Whatever it is, Let me know.

Any queries – Ask me Directly or Ask me in the Group. But Ask 🙂


The 1 Charge Rule

The ultimate hack to control your mobile addiction/ overuse

“1CR — The 1 Charge Rule.”

You can only charge your phone once overnight.

After you wake up, you only have 100% of the battery on your phone to last for the entire day.

You cannot put your phone on charging.
You cannot use a power bank, either.
(Unless extremely necessary)

I’ve experimented with this Rule for the last two weeks.

And I am never going back to my old ways.

I started each day with 100% battery and, on average, had ~30% battery left by EoD.

And I use a 3.5-year-old OnePlus 7

What makes this hack work?

By adding artificial constraints into your routine.

When you have something in limited quantity, you are likely to use it wisely.

You curb unnecessary expenses when you know your bank accounts are running dry.

You drive your car in economy mode when the fuel tank is low.

Bonus benefits of this hack —

  1. I kept my WiFi & Mobile Data switched off while in Deep Work Mode. It stopped app notifications from disrupting my focus.
  2. I kept my phone on Battery Saver Mode. It stopped background apps from using my data and battery unnecessarily (also stops them from invading your privacy)
  3. I saved money, too – especially from the likes of Swiggy & Zomato – who time their notifications just around the time we start feeling hungry.

You can use 1CR when you are commuting to & from work. Even when you are travelling – this will stop you from doomscrolling and instead explore the beauty of mother nature around you.

What hacks do you use to control your mobile usage?

Will you be giving 1 Charge Rule a try? Let me know in the comment section.

If you loved this, repost it so that more people become aware and control their mobile use and have more time for essential things in their life.


Hey ReadARs — It’s time to Self-Read

First things first – This article reaches you few days late. Sincere apologies for that. I’ve been travelling in the state of Himachal Pradesh & haven’t been able to put time to write (Makes me wonder how travel bloggers write amidst the nature’s beauty)

It goes without saying that my biggest project of 2022 for all the ReadARs is to work on our PKM aka Personal Knowledge Management.

And its starts with “Getting Things Done” from 13th June

But before that, I want you to challenge yourself to self-read one of these books.

You can read one of these or anything of your own choice. But please ensure that it’s a light, short read.

Our goal is to Read GTD and these books are warm-ups for it.

Fiction —

A. Animal Farm by George Orwell

Perfect small book that will leave you mesmerised for life. A fun, deep read about all things life & politics.

This will be my preferred choice for you to read on your own.

Buy it here

Non-Fiction —

B. Compound Effect by Darren Hardy

If you still prefer to confine yourself to nonfiction, then this is the short, quick read that will reinforce your understanding about the power of compounding and how it correlates to your life.

Buy it here

Points to Remember while you Self-Read

A. Order your book ASAP 🙂

B. Finish your book before 11th June.

C. Work on your Reading Routine as you read by yourself so that you read your book everyday. This is a warm-up for GTD and thus you need to build in your resilience NOW before we start reading that incredible book.

D. Create your own Daily Portions. Divide it either by 10/15 pages a day format or divide it Chapter Wise (preferred for Nonfiction)

Ensure that you do this division before you start reading the book. Make a daily portion index card or write the same on your Readers Journal. Each day you read that portion, mark a tick against it. This keeps one on-track the most when self-reading.

E. If you finish the 1st, you can read the 2nd too. 🙂
But wrap it up before 11th June.

F. Don’t forget to buy “Getting Things Done” too.
Buy it Here

Go ahead & self-read.
Good Luck. 🙂

Any questions, ASK ME right away on Group or DMs

Reading World Book Day

I won’t be celebrating World Book Day! But you the ReadARs will.

Read this ASAP. Tomorrow, 23rd April is the World Book Day and I want you to celebrate it with full gusto.

It’s the day to celebrate the hard-work, determination & perseverance you have put-in to create your Reading Habits.

In an era where people are addicted to their smartphones, where their attention dangles like a puppet whose strings are being pulled by the social media giants, you are amongst the very rare category of people on this planet who are fighting against their distractions to build this wonderful, magical habit of Reading.

Many of you are in your First Year as a ReadAR, Some of you are in the Second Year & few of you fast approaching the completion of Third Year as a ReadAR. It’s a feat worth celebrating!

If in case some of you are wondering, this is NOT a Testimonial which I am asking you for. So you don’t have to make it about me.

This is about you. All about celebrating your feat & accomplishments in the World of Books with the World on the World Book Day.

5 Ideas How you can celebrate World Book Day –

You can choose any idea you have. But if you are short of ideas, here are 5 —

A. Write your Journey from Zero Books for X number of Years to One/Two/Three Books in a Month.

B. Share a picture of all the Books you have read ever since you began to work on your daily reading habit.

C. Write how Reading Books has helped you personally, professional or both.

D. Share your style of Reading, your tips & tricks on Reading.

E. Write a book review of the book you just Finished.

You can Write or Speak about it. Here’s how you can choose between the two

Pick one that you have been wanting to do for a long while.

If you have been wanting to Write, Write.
If you have been wanting to Speak, Speak.
If you have been wanting to Write & Speak, then Write & Speak

It’s easiest to write or speak something when you are truly passionate about it, when you have gone through that process.

Because at that moment, you’re not writing or speaking from your mind. Your Mind is the Enemy! It’s the most dubious, fickle, doubt creator, two-faced entity you will ever face.

At that moment, you will be writing or speaking from your Heart. ❤️Your heart is always at the right place, always true to the core & always speaks at the emotional level others can instantly connect on.

Write your Heart out. Speak your Heart out. Period.

3 Steps to Ease your Fears of Writing & Speaking

I wrote this entire essay in 15 mins & Editing took 10 mins.

Heck sharing it personally with each ReadAR will take more time!

Here are the 3 simplest tips you can apply

  1. Set a timer of 15/20 minutes to Write on your Laptop/Mobile. Put your phone on Airplane Mode by default, even if you are writing on your Mobile. And sit where you can see your pile of books you have read.
  2. Now write. When you are writing, do not let your mind interfere. Just write anything and everything that comes out of your mind. Do not correct grammar mistakes, Do not edit any sentence at all, Do not try to beautify right now. Just Write.
    P.S — Welcome to the art called Freewriting.
  3. Now Edit. Quick & Fast
    a. Copy & paste what you have written & put it on Grammarly Free Account (it’s quite effective)

    b. Format it for “Readability in 2022” – Recall James Clear’s Atomic Habits – he had written in big fonts & short paragraphs. Only few paragraphs went beyond 7 continuous lines. Your paragraph should ideally be 3-5 lines long.

If you are going to speak, you should write for 5/10 minutes as above, and then hit record!

Ship your Content!

The world is waiting to hear your story. Share it!

You have done the hard work to writing your story. It’s time to share it with the world. Most people get stuck here.

I have been one of them. I’ve hesitant in sharing my story, in showing my work over the last decade. And I am the one who is still paying for it. Today I have to work 10x harder to share something.

The best thing you can do for yourself is to not be AR.

Share! Not for likes. Not for social media validation. (You will ofcourse get them) Not to become a Social Media Influencer & Definitely Not for AR.

You will be Sharing this for yourself. Present & Future Self.

On the days when your future self feels bad, feels down, all you will have to do is to check these posts and reflect on the incredible progress you have made on this journey.

Some tips & tricks for the platform you choose

If you are sharing on LinkedIn, the best time to post is between 9 AM to 11 AM.

If you are sharing on Instagram, the best time to post is between 9 – 11 AM OR 5:30 – 6:30 PM.

If you are sharing on Twitter, the best time to post is between 8 – 9 AM or 7:30 to 8:30 PM.

Get set go. Write & Ship it!

As aNIKEt says — “Just Do It”

If reading this has inspired you, don’t wait for tomorrow to take the next step. Just start right away.

Once you have shipped it on social media platforms, go ahead and share it with your Group of ReadARs.

And don’t forget to share the link on your Whatsapp Status too. The most powerful discovery tool right now 🙂

If you have any question, ask in the comments OR preferably on the Group (Batch 22/21 or The ReadARs Club)

P.S — If you feel like, you can tag me 🙂 — No compulsion

Instagram – @thereadinghabits;
Twitter – @AniketReads &
LinkedIn – Aniket Rai


3rd Book for Cohort-21

Hey ReadARs

It’s time to choose your next book.

One of my favourite all-time Reads — The Alchemist

Please follow these steps when you place your order —

A. Buy it from the Prime Seller by clicking this link below

B. Lot of pirated copies of Alchemist exist in the market which is why there are a number of pirated book sellers on Amazon trying to rip-off the innocent book buyers.

Here’s how you can sidestep even if Amazon gives random seller.

C. Sellers I trust to buy this book —

a. Cloudtail India
b. uRead-Store

You can select the seller by clicking the 21 New from 235 option I have underlined in the desktop screenshot above

Here’s how you can select the seller when buying on Mobile. 👇


1st Book Reveal for Cohort-22

Its time to reveal the first book that all of you wonderful ReadARs of Cohort-22 will read as we move on from Level-1 to Level-2 from Monday, 28th March 2022

I selected “Atomic Habits” because —

I want all of you to go all-in with your Reading Habits.
As you read and unravel the insights from Atomic Habits, you will rack your brain into thinking mode so as to apply the learnings to your Reading Habits.

AH is one of the highest sold nonfiction books of all-time. No book has ever sold 7 million+ copies before their 5th Anniversary.

It’s one of the simplest nonfiction books that you’ll ever read. We will increase the challenge, one book at a time 🙂

For your 1st book – I will encourage you to buy a physical book so that the reading techniques, frameworks & styles could be easily applied.

Please note that I discourage Casual Piracywhere people conveniently download a PDF copy of the book from scrupulous websites & Telegram Channels. Buying an actual book is our way of giving token of regards to the writer for his years of hard work that goes into publishing a book.

Please follow the next steps so that you get an original version of the book. If you are ordering a book online from Amazon/Flipkart, there are 6/10 chances that you will end up having a pirated book from an illicit seller.

Points to remember before placing an order for a Book from Amazon —

Step 1 — Choose Amazon over Flipkart. Ensures quicker delivery. Flipkart does a very poor job when it comes to buying books. Quite Ironic that Flipkart, which started by delivering Books, has lost its way.

Step 2 Order with an Amazon Prime account. Free & Speedy delivery of books.

Step 3 — Do not order from “lowest priced seller”. You will – (a) not get the book in time and to make matters worse, (b) you are likely to get a pirated book, especially for a megaseller book like AH

Step 4 — Buy from “Prime Seller” – to get original books.

The two Prime Sellers on Amazon are uRead_Store or Cloudtail_India

In case of Atomic Habits, its not showing me any other seller on my browser than “Cloudtail India” which is a good thing.

Here’s the Amazon link I am pasting here for you

Endnote – I prefer to buy books from an Independent Book Store. An Indie Book Store is not the likes of Crossword etc. Example of Indie Book Stores in some of Cities of India

MumbaiKitab Khana, Fort; Granth Book Store, Juhu; Majestic Book Depot, Thane

PunePagdandi, Baner ; Solanki Booksellers, Camp

BangaloreBlossoms Book House, Church Street; Champaca; Vasanth Nagar

DelhiBahrisons & Faqir Chand & Sons, Khan Market; Oxford Bookstore, Connaught Place

Chennai – Higginbothams, Triplicane; Words & Worths, Besant Nagar

But when time is a constraint like in your case or when I know I wont be able to visit them maybe until next 3-4 weeks and I need the book before that, I choose to buy them online.


Book Reveals for GRP March-2022

Its time to reveal the Books the members of “The ReadARs Club” will be reading as part of Guided Reading Program from Monday, 21st March 2022

I selected “The 5 Second Rule” because I want my ReadARs to go all-in on Being Courageous. Nobody teaches Courage. Everyone assumes that one can be courageous when situation demands. Unfortunately that’s not true. Most people live their life, afraid of being Courageous, afraid of asking what they deserve.

The Almanack of Naval Ravikant is the One book I want all my ReadARs to read in 2022.

Step 1 — Select the Book that you want to read. You can select only ONE book.

Step 2 — Order the Book TODAY ASAP

Before Ordering from Amazon remember —

A. Do not order from “lowest priced seller”. You will not get the book in time and to make matters worse, you will get a pirated book

B. Buy from “Prime Seller”uRead_Store or Cloudtail_India

C. Almanack of Naval Ravikant is freely available as a PDF or .epub on

Please note that this is NOT CASUAL PIRACY. Naval & Eric Jorgensen have made the book available for open distribution.

If you want to order a paperback version, follow A & B

D. Order the Hardcover Version of the 5 Second Rule

Book Links for 5 Second Rule

uRead_Store – Price Rs 540/-
Cloudtail_India – Price Rs 574/-
Order from Cloudtail India to get it at Rs 150/- ONLY!!!

Step 3 — After you have ordered your book, join the Whatsapp Group of the respective book you have ordered. The Group Link is available on “The ReadARs Club”