My First Experience With an Audible Book

I finally finished listening to my first audible book – Atomic Habits by James Clear. I say “finally” because it took me longer than I expected. I spend around 1 hour each day commuting to-from work and to be more productive during this hour I decided to spend it listening to audiobooks. This audiobook is 5hrs 35mins long – I assumed with 1 hour everyday dedicated to listening to the book I’d be done in max 1.5 weeks but in actual it took me 3 weeks to complete listening to the book. I specifically chose this book to harness my ‘new year, new me’ enthusiasm into developing better habits. Since this was my first experience with audibles – it did take some getting used to in the first few days. I’d loose track of the book and have to rewind to catch up. Also, a lot of material that the book referred to had to be downloaded from James Clear’s website and that also contributed to my slow speed.

How was my experience?

The Pros –

  • I finally figured out a productive way to spend my commute time. (Reading on my Kindle gives me a headache.) I’d usually spend the entire commute on Instagram, this has been a great way to use commute time effectively.
  • It helped in relaxing my mind during the commute – so I could go home and use the time I’d usually spend on Youtube trying to relax – being productive.
  • I find reading self-help books very boring – this made it easier to finish the book.
  • Read multiple books at the same time – I usually find it hard to read 2 books at the same time and prefer concentrating on only one book. But since this isn’t ‘technically’ reading – I was able to go home and read a different book at night.
  • I have observed how my listening skills have worsened over the past few years – listening to audio books is a great way to work on that skill!

The Cons –

  • Since it was my first time listening to an audiobook, I found my thoughts often drifted away and I had to force myself to focus on the book.
  • Since this was a self help book, the author often referenced to charts, journal ideas, examples etc. that had to be seen on his website. I found this quite annoying – to go to his website in every chapter to look for the material he was referencing. In those moments it also felt more like a class and the author a teacher.
  • If you get a text or a mail or any notification that you check out – you end up losing track of the plotline. (This is my fault – I should be able to resist the temptation to check my notifications – but I’m only human! :()

Overall it was a tie between the pros and the cons for me. However, I think listening to a fiction book might be easier than a self help book – which is what I’m going to do next. I also love how I’m being more productive – so I’m definitely going to stick with listening to books on audibles during my commute time! But will it replace reading a book for me? Hell no!

Have you tried audibles or any audio book app? How has your experience been?

Pssst: Audibles is Amazon’s audio book service. If you’re a Prime member – you can avail a three month free subscription of audibles with 1 free book each month. Also a lot of books are available for free too. Check it out here.

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25 Comments Add yours

  1. Sending to one’s website is a bad trap. I haven’t gotten around doing this for books at all, instead had experimented, and its still going on, with a language i want myself to hear. I just keep hearing it until i check my notifications 🙂

    Thanks for sharing.

    Nara x

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Seriously, visiting his website was so annoying.
      Ooh that is a great idea! What a great way to assimilate to a new language that you might be learning.


  2. Shahrin says:

    I couldn’t press fast enough. I am always contemplating listening to audiobooks for some reason it makes me feel weird. I think fiction would be better. I listened to “Silent Patient” and it was fun!!
    You are right about it improves your listening skills. I might venture into more audiobooks in future.

    I love this post✨Thank you for sharing (I was waiting for someone to give a review on audiobooks) xx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Same. It doesn’t really feel like reading – I almost feel like I’m cheating on reading by listening to an audiobook. 🙈

      The Silent Patient has such an interesting story. I love your book recommendations and blame you for my ever increasing TBR pile. 😛

      I’m listening to a fiction novel now – and I love it. It’s actually replaced binging YouTube videos for me.

      Thanks for reading. ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  3. says:

    I haven’t actually listened to an audio book myself, even though my first book was made into one and I’m starting the process of creating one now. (Listening to auditions!)

    If any of your readers are audio book producers with and are interested in working on a personal development book, I’ll be listening to auditions for the next couple of weeks, until the end of January! Just look up Tamara Kulish in the “accepting auditions” area!

    In my first book I did make references to one or two people worth looking up on the Internet, but those can be written down and visited at a later time, it certainly isn’t necessary to do it in order to understand the ideas I present!

    I agree, constantly referring people to go to their website to be able to see charts etc would be very distracting!

    I hope you’ll have better experiences with other books!


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Oooh, I’m definitely going to checkout your books. Are they available an Amazon?

      Good luck with your new book!

      Thank you – I’m trying out a fiction book now and actually enjoying the audio book. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. says:

        Thank you for your good wishes! It’s exciting to start work on a new audio book!

        Yes, both my personal development books and a series of Guided Journals are all available on Amazon!

        Happy to hear that you’re enjoying your new audio fiction book! I believe it should be an enjoyable experience!


  4. Nehal Jain says:

    This was a fun post! Glad you enjoyed the audiobooking experience 😉.
    And I also don’t really read self help books.
    Wish you loads of more fun audiobooks 🤩.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Right? Self help books can be so boring.

      Thank you – I started with a fiction book now and I’m really liking it. 😬

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Nehal Jain says:

        Fiction is honestly the best😁


  5. I totally relate to the cons list – especially #2.
    For #1, I’d say that I experienced the same thing at first (I started audiobooks 2 years ago). However, you ease into it over time and you don’t have to “actively” listen to it to register the content once you get used to it.
    For #3, While listening to podcasts or audiobooks, I put my phone in DND mode. That way I do not get disturbed or interrupted by notifs. If someone calls, I still get a notif though since I have my earphones on and it beeps.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Love the DND idea – definitely going to that while commuting! Thanks for that recommendation.

      I’ve started listening to a fiction book now and I’m finding it so much easier to focus on the story. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Superb!
        I do admit that it’s easier to listening to fiction audiobooks more than non-fiction. Mostly because it is like listening to a story. Whereas with non-fiction, I tend to take notes + highlight stuff that I find important, which I cannot do with audiobooks.
        Nevertheless, amidst all the pros and cons, I do consider audiobooks as blessing because we can get busy at times that makes consuming content take a backseat. Also, they can turn mundane activities like doing the dishes or cleaning the apartment into something productive and interesting!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. tanvibytes says:

    Interesting! I see so many ads about audible so it’s great to hear from a user! 😄 I related to the cons list. My mind drifts away constantly, which is why it’s such a challenge for me, but I do agree with you about it being a great way to improve listening skills! 😃 Good luck with your other books! 🥳✨🙌

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      And I need to improve my listening skills so much. I just space out if someone talks for too long. 🙈 But I definitely think it’s a great alternate to binge watching mindless content on YouTube/Netflix. 🙈

      Liked by 1 person

      1. tanvibytes says:

        Yeah, I have been watching a lot of YouYube, so audiobooks are probably a better alternative 😀🌟


  7. I still haven’t gotten around to trying audible books. I don’t know, I just like actually holding the book! You’re so right, if I was sent to a website to look at charts and graphs while listening to an audio book it would drive me absolutely crazy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Same! I have been extremely slow in adapting to my Kindle and now to Audibles. But it is more convenient and I like how it makes me more productive so I’d recommend giving it a try!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The convenience does sound intriguing! I might try reading books online, but the audible books might have to wait!


  8. Lani says:

    I enjoy audios for long drives or commutes. You do have a tendency to ‘space out’ from time to time, I think that’s normal, but with reading you just go back and read what you missed, so yeah, a bit more challenging with audios.

    Actually, I like self-help books very much and have both listened and read them with equal enjoyment. But I can see how references to charts and graphs could get really annoying and distract from any flow.

    But good for you for deciding to do something more constructive with your commute time. And have fun discovering what works for you, xo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Agreed – it’s so much harder to find the point from when you’re thoughts drifted off. I think it would be easier with a fiction novel. With this book, a lot of what the author was saying would make me think and I’d just forget about the book. 🙈

      I like self help books that actually help. 🙈 A lot of them are just recycled garbage from older books. I definitely think this book was very good but it was so frustrating to keep going to the author’s website to find the material he was referencing. By the end I just stopped doing that. 🙈

      I really love how much more productive I am because of audiobooks – 1hr everyday is huge for me atleast. I’ve downloaded my next book – hopefully it will be an easier listen. 😊

      What are you reading these days?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Lani says:

        I’m reading more books than I want to right now. Hahahaha. But I get what you mean about some self-help books, so much of it is recycled, but for me, I need constant reminders to not act like a prick. 😛


  9. Nathi says:

    I’ve heard about Audible and recent times, I see audiobooks getting popular and to be honest, it never made much sense to me until I read your experience here. Maybe I’ll give it a try sometime!


  10. Juliette says:

    Great review! I have never listened to an audio book as I usually find it really hard to focus on something that I can only hear – I’m much better when I have a visual support. But I would love to try one day, so for now I’m just training this listening skill with podcasts: my mind used to wander off all the time, but now I am focused most of the time!
    How did you find the book? Apparently it has been life-changing for so many people but I have yet to read it 😊


  11. I was giving it a thought to try audiobooks for a few months now. Your experience summarizes the benefits and difficulties precisely. I guess I’ll start listening to some fiction very soon.


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