21 Things to Do While Listening to Audiobooks

Audiobooks have become a soft option for old-fashioned reading. Even for avid readers, Audiobooks are a popular thing now because they are ideal for multitasking.

Even when you don’t have the time or energy to read your favorite book, you can always listen to an audiobook.

And the thing is, audiobooks enable us to multitask, they can also give us a boost during an unamusing task. You can also use audiobooks to calm your nerves when in a tense state or use it to guide you through a task.

“This seems like an alien invention, don’t it buddy? All these benefits?”

Audiobooks offer endless possibilities, and I have compiled a few suggestions of what you can do while listening to your Audiobooks.

Let’s get started.

things to do while listening to audio books

What Are Audiobooks?

I know most of you already know what an audiobook is, but I like taking care of Robinson Crusoes. So, simply put, an audiobook is a sound recording of a book. A narrator is recorded reading a book and it is then made into a CD, cassette tape, or an MP3 format digital file.

All you have to do is press play and listen to the audiobook.

a physical collection of audio books
A physical collection of audio books.

How Do You Listen to an Audiobook?

Audiobooks are digital audio files and come in formats playable on a broad range of consumer electronic devices such as phones, tablets, and computers.

You can purchase, borrow, or download audiobooks for free from various internet libraries. These online libraries have audiobooks in the following audio formats:

MP3, AAC, and WMA.

These formats are compatible with most media devices available nowadays.

What Is The Difference Between Ebooks, Audiobooks, And Eaudiobooks?

Here’s another section for the Crusoes.

As I already said, an audiobook is a sound recording of a book. An e-book is a book in an electronic or digital form. Unlike audiobooks, you can read e-books whether locally stored on your device, using your web browser, or an app.

And… simply, eaudiobook is a term used for a downloadable audiobook.

21 Things to Do While Listening to Audiobooks

1. Jogging

listening to an audio book while jogging
Listening to an audiobook while jogging.

We’ve got to keep fit! In these times, you cannot afford to let your body go.

I know you love listening to your favorite artist during your workouts, but you can also listen to an exciting story while taking a walk or jog in the park.

Try listening to a horror story, I assure you, you’re going to run faster.

And yes, I’m talking from experience.

2. Gardening

gardening while wearing headphones
Gardening while wearing headphones.

When gardening, you use your hands and a small percentage of your brain. What do you really think about during that time?

You can take the opportunity to listen to some life-changing audiobooks, books on topics like midlife crisis, loneliness, and love.

What a way to reflect on your life.

4. Complete a jigsaw puzzle

To keep your brain working at 100%, you might try to complete a puzzle.  

If you’re a mystery lover, reading a Sherlock type of story and piecing a jigsaw puzzle together can work really well. While the jigsaw puzzle keeps your hands busy, you also get the benefit of adding extra stimulation for reading your story.

5. Going for a walk

You might try taking a stroll in your neighborhood. Or go all out and hike the mountains listening to an audiobook covering topics like success, determination, and endurance.

6. Listen While Commuting

a woman listens to an audio book on the way home
A woman listens to an audiobook on the way home.

Sometimes, you’re tired during a journey but still want to read one or two paragraphs on the road. Why not try listening to an audiobook?

You could get onto a train and, instead of reading a book, you could listen to one.

7. Walking Your Dog

Do you own a dog walking side hustle or just love walking your dog? You could kill two birds with one stone by listening to an audiobook on personal finance, entrepreneurship, and marriage.

8. Sitting on the Beach

This is my favorite. Of course, I love the beach and the commotion that comes with a busy summer day on the beach but, sometimes, I want to relax and shout out the noise.

And I think relaxing on the beach, in the sunshine, with an audiobook streaming into my ears is the ultimate treat.

9. At a Coffee Shop

reading a nice book in a coffee shop is a great way to spend time alone
Listening to a nice book in a coffee shop is a great way to spend time alone.

You know, almost everybody recommends the café as the best place to write your bestseller.

That’s still true, and it’s also a very good place to listen to an audiobook. Imagine listening to your favorite book while sipping a cup of coffee.

10. Visit an Art Museum

Some audiobooks were inspired by history and art, and museums are full of these two things. While listening to such audiobooks, you can also visit the museum to appreciate art and history.

You can slow down the playback of your audiobook while strolling through the galleries at the art museum.

11. While Working

Listening to audiobooks at work or in your home office is also a good idea. This is not for everybody though; obviously, a bridge rigger or paramedic cannot be listening to an audiobook in the thick of things.

But if you’re something like a writer, listening to a story while writing isn’t such a bad idea.

12. At the Gym

working out in the gym while listening to audio book
Working out in the gym while listening to an audiobook.

Working out at the gym is not everyone’s cup of tea (although, for health reasons, it ought to be). It requires a lot of mental and physical energy and an audiobook with a lot of affirmations and positive content can work for exercise-related activities.

Plus, plugging in your audiobook can help you avoid distractions in the gym.

13. Listen While Crafting

Have you turned to knitting or crocheting to beat your boredom? Perhaps you can add audiobooks to liven up your tasks.

Keeping your hands and mind active is the perfect way of keeping your day an exciting one.

14. Tidying Up your Room

If you like cleaning your room like you have OCD, listening to an audiobook will give you an extra reason for doing so.

Some books have good ‘talkathons’ on personal hygiene and the power of tidying up, and those are perfect for you.

15. Listening Before Going to Sleep

social media, television, and other sources of sleep robbing blue light could be replaced by audiobooks to help people get to sleep
Social media, television, and other sources of sleep-robbing blue light could be replaced by audiobooks to help people get to sleep.

The thing I like the most about Audible (when it comes to bedtime audiobook listening) is that it has a sleep timer that gives you the option of listening to an audiobook before falling asleep. You can use the audiobook to relax and help you fall asleep.

16. Baking Cakes

I’ve never baked a cake, but I can imagine how soothing it can be listening to something straight out of a cookery bookshelf.  

The concept just sounds amazing, listening to an audiobook and mixing sweetened cream cheese and eggs.

17. While Eating

Treat yourself to a great, delicious meal, and while munching away, listen to an audiobook.

You could also buy a burger, pizza, or a taco (which is my favorite because reading a book and eating tacos is a great idea).

18. Coloring a Coloring Book

Coloring books don’t demand a lot of mental activity, making them a great fit for listening to audiobooks.

You use your hands but the process doesn’t require a lot of concentration and you might do it as a side task when listening to an audiobook.

19. Sitting on a Park Bench

two buddies listening to audiobooks while studying on a bench
Two buddies listening to audiobooks while studying on a bench.

Listening to an audiobook while sitting on a park bench is a great way to spend a relaxing day.

You’re not only reading your favorite book, but you’re soaking in the summer sunshine.

20. Folding Laundry

If there are tasks, like folding laundry, that you find to be very slow… You might want to but still, find it hard to turn such important but draggy tasks into a lively experience.

Audiobooks could be the answer. You can play the audiobook on a loudspeaker to let yourself move freely and prevent your earphones from getting tangled up in your hands.

21. Play Games

Whether you’re playing a ‘career mode’ on FIFA or playing a simple game like Solitaire, listening to audiobooks is a very good idea for you.  

How to Listen to an Audiobook?

Here are some tips to help you get the most from reading an Audiobook:

how to listen to an audio book
4 tips on how to listen to an audiobook effectively.

1. Be ‘Sage’ When Multitasking

Of course, most of us want to multitask while reading an audiobook, but you have to choose the other multitasking basket wisely. I don’t think driving is anywhere among my list of best ways to make use of audiobooks because I don’t want to take my mind off the road—the book might get too exciting and I might forget I’m on the wheel.

Jogging in a place where there are no vehicles or motorbikes—like in a park—is a better option. The key is maximizing both activities.

2. Deciding on the types of books to listen to

Some books sound better than others. You can actually guess which audiobook is going to be lively or not. Works of fiction tend to lean toward the entertainment end of the bar and they are, usually, easier to listen to as audiobooks.

So, you have to choose an audiobook that will not distract from whatever you’re going to be doing at the time of reading the book.

Or… choose a book that complements that task.

3. Practice self-narration or journaling

When you’re reading technical stuff, it is beneficial to summarize the portion you’re reading before moving to the next. The best way of doing this is by summarizing that part to yourself or a willing friend. Pause the audiobook after a section or two and summarize the content you’ve read either by telling yourself/someone else or journaling it in a notebook.

4. Adjust the speed to your preference

I did an article on Audible vs. Kindle Unlimited, and I mentioned that Audible has a feature that lets you tweak the pace of the narration. To suit your reading preferences, you can either speed up or slow down the speed of the narration and help you stay engaged with the content.

Are Audiobooks As Good For You as Reading?

Audiobooks are a reliable companion, a time and energy-saving alternative to reading.  They allow us to multitask and focus on other tasks as we consume huge chunks of information.

But is listening to an audiobook as good as reading one?

Hmm… Well, let me outline some arguments before I answer this question.

The biggest issue I have with audiobooks is that of multitasking. It’s hard to take in the most from a book when you’re doing two things. And it’s equally hard to focus on one thing when listening to an audiobook because, apart from your ears and mind, every other part of your body is free.

The thing about audiobooks is that they are as good as their narrator. With a printed book, you’re the narrator and you can understand yourself very well and make the story as exciting as you want it. However, if the narrator is not good enough, you will not enjoy the audiobook.

There are many issues, but these two swing the argument in reading’s favor. So, my answer is, listening to an audiobook is and will never be as good as reading one.

Audiobooks vs actual books.

Summary

Listening to audiobooks has a lot of knowledge-related and entertainment benefits. But to get the best out of listening to audiobooks, you can do one of the things I have listed in this article.

While I don’t have the same experience listening to audiobooks as reading, they are a very convenient alternative to old-school paperback reading.

About Jessica Majewski

Jessica started off as an avid book reader. After reading one too many romance novels (really... is it ever really enough?), she decided to jump to the other side and started writing her own stories.

She now shares what she has learned (the good and the not so good) here at When You Write, hoping she can inspire more up and coming wordsmiths to take the leap and share their own stories with the world.