Sunday, September 12, 2010

Reading Goals

I've been thinking a lot about goals. There are many things that I have hoped to achieve in the last year that have fallen by the wayside. Eating better, a regular exercise routine, consistent writing, keep up with faraway friends. I make progress, often in fits and starts, but never really seem to get to where I want to be.

There is one glorious exception to this, however. Reading. I've read more this year than I have in a long time, perhaps ever. And I've been trying to determine the cause of this wonderful progress. I think the key is that I made a goal, and posted my progress publicly. Back in January, inspired by my best friend and fellow reader (and blogger), I set a goal to read 48 books this year (I was going to go for 50, but 48 is 4 per month I have a thing about the number 8, so it was just a more appealing number to me). And I am thrilled to say that I am well on my way to meeting, and exceeding my goal (you can see my progress at the top of the blog under "books read in 2010").

It's certainly not surprising to me that setting goals leads to achievement, but it has been powerful for me to experience it myself.

I will be applying this realization to the rest of my personal aspirations, but I am grateful that I succeeded first in reading. The more I read, talk to readers, and read about reading, I am convinced of its vital importance to everyone's life. I'm in the process of shifting the focus of my blog toward boldly advocating for an elevated status for reading in our society.

So I'm starting today with a challenge to you all. Set a reading goal. Set a goal for time spent reading, or for books read in a given period of time. A book a month? Three books a month? Read every day for an hour? Set aside two hours per week? Whatever it is, make it a bit of a stretch. A bit more than you would normally read, but not so much that it seems impossible. And tell others about it. Comment here, tweet it, share it with your friends.

Reading is a gift that we so often take for granted. I ask you all to set a goal for yourself, and commit to making reading a priority in your life. I can't wait to hear all about it!


dannielo said...

If you'd like a tool for setting your goals, you can use this web application:

You can use it to manage your goals, projects and tasks, set next actions and contexts, use checklists, schedules and a calendar.
A Vision Wall (inspiring images attached to yor goals) is available too.
Works also on mobile, and syncs with Evernote.

Katie said...

I'm glad that my reading goal was able to inspire your reading goal, even though I'm so not going to reach mine. ;) At least I made it farther than last year.

Jamie said...

Does reading blogs count? I love to read the full-length, but recently I find myself not sitting down enough to do it.

I just bought 7 "new" used books so I am hoping to put my mouth where my money already went.