As a cultivation culture, gap intelligence’s foundation is one of growth and development. This means we are a learning organization, and gappers are empowered to motivate themselves to grow. The idea of cultivating personal growth and self-motivation develops at an early age. This got me thinking back to my childhood.

Back in elementary school, I was excited to participate in our school’s RIF program. RIF stands for Reading is Fundamental and is a program designed to encourage children to read and succeed. I remember that if you read a certain number of books, you were rewarded with a gift certificate for a personal size pan pizza from Pizza Hut. As a competitive kid, I wanted to read as many books and obtain as many gift certificates as possible. Yes, reading was fun, but unfortunately, my motivation was pizza, a dish that wasn’t eaten too often in my household.

As an adult, my motivations for reading more have changed. I’m no longer lured by pizza (however, I still like pizza), but instead from the satisfaction and knowledge that I’ll gain, in addition to a myriad of other beneficial reasons, such as expanding your vocabulary, stress reduction, and memory improvement. If you are struggling to read more in this busy day and age, here are a few suggestions to get your reading on:

Reading expands your mind.

Join a book club

Move over Oprah Book Club, gap intelligence has its very own book club. In the past year, members have read The Four Tendencies, Originals, and The End of Average. If you are in need of some motivation, accountability, and reading recommendations, then joining a book club would be a great option.

Schedule time

Finding time to read should be like everything else in your schedule. You schedule your meetings and your workouts. Reading time is no different. You can set a solid block of time or slots throughout the day. Whatever works for your schedule, having a dedicated time to read creates a routine for reading.

Sharing is caring

Let others know what you’re reading. By talking with other people, they can provide recommendations on similar books you’ve read. Sharing what you’ve read will then help you add to your ever-growing booklist.

Technology can be your friend

If you don’t like lugging around a book, you can always use a Kindle or tablet to get your reading material. Even your smartphone is equipped to help you read more. So, really you shouldn’t have any excuses. Audiobooks are also a popular way for people to get their reading time in as they can listen to books on their commute as well as while they exercise or travel.

Stacks of books.

Use social media

You’re probably thinking, “How is this going to help me read more?” Ah, patience grasshopper as it’s all about accountability and consistency. Along the lines of sharing and using technology, posting on social media, whether it’s Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, lets the world know what you’re reading. So, the next time someone asks you about that book you posted, you should be able to answer them.

And in case you were wondering, I did read a lot of books in elementary school including one of my favorites, Bridge to Terabithia, and I ate lots of personal pan pizzas, too. Reading as a means of professional development, is just one of the ways in which gappers can learn and grow. Whatever your motivation, reading every day is the key to success (or pizzas).