I’ve noticed that I’m reading less these days. Part of it may be that work is consuming so much of my time, but another reason is that I’m not prioritizing it. Unfortunately, it’s hurting my writing.
I view reading and writing as two halves that can’t exist without each other. Without good inputs, your outputs tend to stagnate.
Reading provides ideas while writing solidifies them. However, reading really shines when you focus on quality content. There’s a time and place for junk content (Twitter). But the more time you spend digesting books and essays, the better off you’ll be.
Consuming quality content is necessary to write well. Without it, you run in circles with your ideas. With it, you connect ideas together, deepening your understanding of what you learn.
Reading isn't the only medium that helps you learn though, there are many others. I enjoy podcasts, yet I don’t learn as much because it’s harder to revise and highlight the good content. Not to mention you can’t skim with podcasts. Since everyone learns differently, don’t feel bad for not reading books. Find the medium(s) that suit you best.
One technique I tried and want to do more often is record videos where I explain a new topic to myself. It helps me identify where I have holes in my understanding so that I can quickly review and fill in those knowledge gaps.
When you focus on quality inputs, your outputs will dramatically improve.