along with the weight-loss resolutions and the goals to improve your
finances, have you made any specific reading objectives for 2011? Let’s
discuss ways to make your reading more intentional this year. With a
plan in place, you’re likely to read more books by year’s end. More
books often equals expanded minds, reduced stress, and increased faith.
Make a List
Make three lists, and keep them
up-to-date all year long.
List Number One:
Make a list of all the titles and authors you want to read. When you
hear of a good book or a friend tells you what they’re reading, add it
to the list. You are more likely to read a variety of books if you have
this list at the ready for your trips to the bookstore and library. You
might even want to subdivide this list into titles and authors,
depending on how detailed you are.
List Number Two:
Keep track of your “to be read” (TBR) books. We all have a tall
stack—many of us have one in every room. We’ll get more of these read
if we develop a plan or create accountability. Some people post their
TBR lists on their blogs or Facebook pages, or they create public goals
or deadlines to motivate them to complete more books. What would drive
you to get more books read?
List Number Three:
This list is the most obvious. Create a record to document the titles
you read, so that by the end of year you can quickly go back through
the list and note all the important stats. From this list, you can
select your Top 10 for the year. Count the number of books you read and
set an even higher goal for the next year to grow your reading
Plan ahead to add more variety
to your lists. We all get stuck in ruts. At year’s end we may look back
and realize we stayed in our reading comfort zones, reading familiar
authors and themes. This is the year to add some spice to your reading.
Stretch yourself. Open up to new authors with new styles. Determine to
pick up a certain number of new releases to stay current. But also
decide how many of the old standards have eluded you—get them at the
library and determine that 2011 is the year you will read the books
that were all the buzz in years’ past. Check the best-seller lists to
pick up ideas. Some of these titles have been on best-seller lists for
years. There’s a reason for that! And other titles gain instant
notoriety as soon as the book launches.
Out Who’s Naughty
Have you ever started reading a
book and realized it wasn’t for you? Do you keep reading because you
feel like you have to? Remind yourself that you aren’t reading for
school. You don’t have to finish the assignment. So if the book doesn’t
appeal to you, I give you permission to put it down unfinished. Yep,
that’s right. Do not finish that book. Why waste
time on mediocrity when you could be chapters deep in a new book that
might possibly change your world, or at least take you to a new world?
What one idea can you take from
today’s article to help you grow as a reader this year? Don’t make this
as a casual New Year’s resolution. I suggest you create an intentional
goal, and by end of year you will see lots of titles crossed off your
TBR list and added to your completed list. Well done!