“I used to love to read”
I’ve said it. My friends have said. You’ve probably said it at one point. Somewhere between school, work, and adulting we’ve all lost the time and energy to read. This year, I’m challenging you and myself to read. Not a lot! But enough to re-engage in this wonderful pastime and also improve ourselves.
Benefits of Reading
Reading has many benefits. Mental stimulation and memory improvement are among many of the well known benefits of reading. Reading is also a stress reducer. Not to mention it can be a completely free past-time. Many libraries now allow you to check out books straight to your IPad or phone, eliminating the trip to the actual library.
Set a Goal Number
Mine is 6. I’ve chose six books for the entire year. That’s only one book every 2 months! That definitely seems obtainable.
Set Apart Some Time
Reading takes time. And effort. That’s why so many more people watch movies based on books rather than read the book themselves. With my goal of only 1 book every 2 months, I should be able to obtain my goal by setting aside about 1-2 hours a week. Seems easy enough. I know it will get harder along the way, but I also know that if I start the first few months out strong while motivation is high, the last few months will be easier.
So the challenge for this year is to read from at least six different genres. You can set a goal number of how many books, but I encourage you to read at least one in every category. These categories were chosen, to improve, educate, and entertain the self all in one year.
The 6 Book Genres Included
1. Self-Improvement Book
A lot of people cringe at this. They equate self-improvement to cheesy, pseudo-psychology, self-help books. That does not have to be your choice. It can be! But it doesn’t have to be! Think more along the lines of a book on organization, time management, clean eating, working out, finances, budgeting, or parenting. Something that will help you grow as a person!
2. Non-Fiction Book in Your Career Field
This is for EVERYONE! And I mean EVERYONE! I know some of you just tried to scroll past this, thinking it doesn’t apply to you. Maybe you are still in school. Or maybe you are working retail or as a barista with no plans to stay in your current career field. Then choose this book wisely as a book in the career field of your dreams. This may very well be the most important thing you do all year. Think of it as educating yourself to put your best foot forward in the future. No one knows everything there is to know about their current career field, there’s no telling what you could learn in one simple book. There are books out there on every topic. I guarantee it. If you aren’t interested in an information book in your career field, then look for a memoir, biography, or autobiography from someone who has been in that field. I can pretty much guarantee you’ll learn something from them.
3. Non-Fiction Book on an Interest of Yours
This is a fun one. If you have a side hustle this is perfect for you. But everyone has a hobby. And who wouldn’t love to know more or be better at their hobbies? You might choose an informational book about planes, working out, history or electronics. Or you might want an instructional book on woodworking, fashion or basket weaving (hey I’ve seen it!).
4. Fiction or Nonfiction Book Written Prior to 1950
This is where the fun begins. I love fiction. So I could not just spend an entire year reading nonfiction books. So read a classic! Pick up one of those books you were supposed to read in high school but didn’t. There are so many gems in older books that I believe we do a disservice to ourselves if we only read from our generation.
5. Fiction or Nonfiction Book Written Post-1950
Read that book you want to read!! And if you haven’t read Harry Potter, start there! Pick out a bestseller from the New York Times Bestseller list. Or go to your local bookstore and look at the titles they are promoting now! You can pick any fun genre. This category is designed to make you fall in love with reading again. It’s designed to make the rest of the reading easier to do because you’ve rediscovered your childhood love of fantasy, mystery, or romance.
6. Book on Christianity / Religion
I recognize that not everyone reading this is going to share my religion. If you don’t then pick something in your own spiritual interests. But for those of you that are Christians, this may be the most inspirational or life-changing categories for you. This might be a Christian living book, a historical study book or a Commentary on a book of the Bible. No matter what you choose, I guarantee you’ll learn something that will affect your life eternally!
Want to join me in this challenge? Comment below what books you plan on reading this year!