7 Reasons Why Audiobooks Should Be Part of Your Routine
Would you like to get through more books? If you have trouble finding time to read, listening to audiobooks can help you get through your reading list much more quickly.
Audiobooks have surged in popularity in recent years and the most popular marketplace for them is Audible, a company owned by Amazon. Audible sells thousands of audiobooks and is available as an app on phones, tablets and desktops (you can get 2 free audiobooks with a free trial here). Personally, I love using the Audible app on my iPhone.
A few months ago, my wife and I had our first child, and as a result I’ve had less time to read than usual. The Audible app helps me listen to books in situations where it just wouldn’t be possible to read a physical or digital book. In the last month alone, I’ve listened to 8 audiobooks.
Here are 7 reasons why you should listen to audiobooks:
#1: Listen anywhere & enjoy more books, more often
You can listen to audiobooks when your eyes are occupied but your mind is free. They can help you kill two birds with one stone. I’ve listened to audiobooks while commuting, doing chores, exercising and a variety of other situations. Those small bits of time start to add up. And you end up enjoying many more books this way.
#2: Listen to master storytellers bring books to life
You can experience a book in another dimension by listening to the inspiring voice of your favorite author or an expert storyteller. It can be easier to immerse yourself in the book when you hear the voice of characters in the story come alive. For non-fiction, a good narrator will emphasize important points through the inflection of their voice, helping you understand the information more easily. And if you’re listening to an audiobook read by one of your favorite authors, it’s a uniquely intimate experience, like having a conversation with a good friend.
#3: Speed up through books
Audiobooks give you the ability to speed up or slow down the pace of the narrator. This can be especially helpful if the narrator is going at a pace that is unusually slow. You may want to increase the speed in this situation but slow down if the narrator is talking too fast by default. Audible allows you to modify the speed from 0.75x to 3x the normal speed of narration. Just keep in mind that a faster speed requires much more of your attention. And in certain books, especially novels, you may want to read at the default speed to get the best experience from a great narrator.
#4: Switch between reading / listening to your Kindle books with the tap of a button
One of the coolest features Amazon provides is the ability to easily switch between reading a Kindle book and its companion audiobook on Audible. This can be done with the tap of a button in the Kindle or Audible app (see instructions on how to do this here). So you can read while you’re at home and then seamlessly switch to the audiobook when driving to run errands later in the day. You can view the catalog of over 65,000 Kindle books with Audible narration here.
#5: Improve Your Vocabulary
You can improve your vocabulary by listening to the audiobook while reading along in the text version because you learn how to correctly pronounce various words. Kids or non-native speakers may find this especially helpful in developing their vocabulary. Additionally, you can slow down Audible books to 0.75x the normal speed to make it easier to keep up the pace. See all the read-along books for kids here.
#6: Don’t like your audiobook? Audible will refund you
Great narrators help stories come alive. But a terrible narrator makes for a terrible audiobook. A nice feature included with your Audible membership is the Great Listen Guarantee. From the date you purchase an audiobook, you have a whole year to return and exchange the book with no questions asked. This can be done online from the Account Details page under “Transactions and Returns”.
#7: Listen to unlimited audiobooks & ebooks with Kindle Unlimited
Kindle Unlimited gets you access to over 1 million ebooks and thousands of audiobooks for $9.99 a month. I personally have a membership myself and find it worth the cost since I’m reading numerous books monthly. You can see the catalog of Kindle Unlimited ebooks here and audiobooks here.
Paul is the founder of Iris Reading, the largest provider of speed-reading and memory courses. His workshops have been taught to thousands of students and professionals worldwide at institutions that include: NASA, Google, HSBC and many Fortune 500 companies.