How much time do you spend "relaxing" online with social media, television, or clickhole-like content? More than you probably care to track, own, or admit (unless of course, you are one who has sworn it all off and then, you might just never stop admitting to this fact while making small talk).
A year ago I tried something different – I changed my habit (for at least part of the year) and tried reading a book during those small down moments and in-between times. If you are anything like me, you might encounter any one or all of the following barriers:
- don't know what to read first or next
- aren't ready to spend what could quickly add up to lots of money buying books you might only read once
- aren't sure what goal to set or how long you'll keep it up
I tackled the first barrier by using social media to source my list and then shared it back to help generate even more ideas. Anytime I would find a good list of recommended books, I would then add those of interest to my list on Goodreads as well. Having this ready-to-go list of books made picking a new book far less likely to kill my momentum after reading a good book.
I only bought one or two books this year for ones that I couldn't find (or really wanted my own copy) from my local library. While there were a small handful that were checked out with waiting lists, having my own list of potential reads made it easier to then move on to a different one in my list.
As with most things I do, I set an aggressive goal at the outset and then have reflected on how successful I was for future benchmarking. My goal was to read one book a week – which I was able to do for a good chunk of the year (until we took off for a multi-month 20-state road trip in May that threw additional unanticipated barriers to my book-reading goal). So in total, I generated a list of 371 books I am interested in reading and read 19 of them over the course of the year. I definitely didn't make my goal of 50 books but am happy with the ones I did read and am interested in doubling that number in 2018.
I'm looking forward to renewing this push come 2018 with my goal of 38 books and an already-generated list of great ones to choose from. If you have suggestions for ones I should add (or lists of recommended books), please leave a comment with a link. In the meantime, here is a list of lists for highest recommended books for 2017 (listed in no particular order):
So here is to a good year of book-reading in 2018!
husband & father; cyclist; former senior advisor in obama white house;
senior strategists for csforall; nomcon lead; owner of initial velocity...