A traveling mom herself, author and speed reading expert Abby Marks Beale has developed some practices to help her manage her reading more efficiently when she’s traveling without kids.

“I relish those times of peace and quiet when I’m on a trip,” she says. “But I manage my reading expectations with pre-trip preparations.”

Here are her tips:

§ Before departure, Marks Beale triages of all the unread magazines in her home and office.  “I cut out and staple all the articles I’m interested in reading and put them in a folder. This way I’m not carrying bulky magazines but have weeded out only the articles I want to read.”

§ Once read, she only keeps the articles she’d like to share with others or that have potential future use. “I end up keeping about two out of ten to take home with me and toss the rest,” she says.

§ If there’s no time for triage, Marks Beale tries to be as realistic as possible about how much time she’ll have to read based on her schedule. “If I’m away two nights and know a bulk of the time will be spent in meetings and training, I don’t bring more than I know I can get through. Bringing along too much puts pressure on me and can make me feel overwhelmed. I maintain my reading sanity by being realistic.”

Other Tips

“I keep a pencil on hand when I’m reading so I can make check marks in the margins next to sections I may want to reference later. I find it works better than highlighting.”  —A. White, business owner

“When I was going through my master’s program, I tried to bring one reading assignment with me per trip. That way I stayed focused and usually completed one assignment while traveling.”  —Corporate Executive and Part-Time Student