The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


December 4, 2013

Balancing Act: Reading fills many needs for busy professionals

Holiday overwhelm is upon us. Will we ever find the time to sink into the couch with our new electronic reader or devour the paperback we picked up at the book fair?

Between holiday shopping, parties, email and work obligations, it’s easy to feel like we don’t have enough hours to get it all done. Still, somehow Americans are finding time to send new authors skyrocketing up the bestseller list. Everyone from the rock band U2 to Miami Heat player Dwyane Wade has become an author, vying for our leisure time, and publishers say the number of new books has exploded.

Whether for fun or to get ahead, reading has proved to sharpen our minds. Today, many statistics show that top CEOs read four to five books per month. Here is how and why some people find a way to fit reading into their work life balance.

-- It’s for leisure. Laurie Levine of Cooper City, Fla., uses her 45-minute commute to and from work to listen to audio books. The leisure activity makes her drive seem productive and enjoyable. Levine, vice president of business and finance at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Fla., says she usually listens to fiction, particularly series like “Game of Thrones.“ “It needs to capture my attention and make me forget about the drive.“ With her two children now away at college, Levine said, she also reads books on her iPad at night while her husband watches sports on TV. She brings her iPad with her wherever she goes, hoping to squeeze in some reading whenever there’s a wait. “My grandmother was a librarian and encouraged a love of reading from the time I was a young kid,“ Levine explained. As a member of two book clubs, Levine, 51, estimates she reads four to six books a month.

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