Finding the opportunity to read can be a challenge even for avid readers — and that’s where audiobooks come in. They can be a great alternative, especially for multitaskers. And it’s good news that there’s an enormous overlap in comprehension of an audio text compared to comprehension of a print text.
If you're ready to get started, here are five tips for listening to your favorite audiobook without skipping a beat.
1. Try an easy read first.
No doubt listening to an audiobook is different from reading. Listening requires auditory processing — referring to how the brain perceives and interprets sound information — and may not come naturally at first.
Only about 30% of the population is made up of auditory learners, but that number is growing. Audiobooks are a great starting place because they can help improve comprehension and vocabulary — especially for second-language learners.
Start with something easy to read such as these titles:
2. Stick to something short.
Just like you wouldn't want to dive into a difficult title for your first audiobook, you also don't want to listen to something longer than eight hours.
Check out audiobook titles like:
- Marriage Story
- The Big Lie: How One Doctor's Medical Fraud Launched Today's Deadly Anti-Vax Movement
3. Find a good narrator.
From the author to celebrities, the narrator of an audiobook can enhance the experience. It's a similar concept to how actors can make or break a movie. Like movies, audiobook narrators are often voice actors with extensive training. But not every narrator makes a connection with the content they're reading.
Before jumping into a new title, listen to a sample of the audiobook to make sure you like the narrator's tone and inflection. You might even look to the book reviews to see what other listeners had to say.
4. Increase your listening speed.
Some readers struggle with audiobooks because they feel they are too "slow." If this is you, increase the speed of your audiobook playback. Listening to your favorite audiobook at a 1.2 or 1.5 rate can help the text feel more natural and conversation-like versus something that drags on.
Pick one of these titles to get started listening to an audiobook at a little faster pace.
5. Multitask while you listen.
Doing mundane tasks like driving, folding laundry, walking your pet, or washing dishes are prime opportunities to pair with an audiobook. You'd be surprised how much quicker your chores go if you have something entertaining to listen to.
Here's a list of things to do while listening to your favorite audiobook.
1. Commuting to work
4. Outdoor chores
5. Working (depending on your job)
6. Having a self-care, at-home spa day
7. Getting ready or showering
8. Cooking or baking
12. Walking your dog
13. Playing with pets
15. Organizing your cupboards or closets
18. Putting together a jigsaw puzzle
19. Waiting in line or on hold
20. Falling asleep