How to Read More Books in 2022

The start of the new year brings with it joy, hope and a new chance to start over or improve on the things that didn’t go quite so well. Everything can always be improved upon and made even better. It’s a matter of if you are willing to or not. One of my goals this year is to read more books. In this digital age, I find myself always reading, but it’s mostly news, online articles, papers, and researching on websites. Reading a book is different, it lets you become totally immersed in the book, the idea, the running theme of the book for several hundred pages. It lets you dwell and spend valuable time with it. 

Last year, I managed to read more books than the previous year, however, I still have a pile of books waiting to be read.  My husband, who likes actionable goals, would ask me how many more books would be considered “more” and when would it be “enough.” What would be my plan for achieving this goal?

Regarding the number of books, I am not going to compare myself to those who read 100 to 250 books or year or roughly 2-4 books in a week.  Although that was me in my young, school days when I didn’t have the responsibilities of an adult, the question then remains how many books should I read? Do I need a numerical goal or should the focus be on how much indeed I get from these books?

On the number of books to read in a year, a study by Kantar Insights in 2019 surveyed British readers and found that although more than half (54%) had read a book in the past year, only 34% or readers managed to read 10 or more books.  In the US, according to the Pew Research Center which surveyed Americans in early 2021, a quarter said they had not read a book in whole or in part in the past year. This is whether in print, electronic, or audio form. Those who did, read an average of 12 books per year. The survey has several interesting insights concerning demographics but I won’t go into that here. 

Researching how best it was to read more books, I’ve selected some insights which I personally have tried and work for me and some which I need to work on

  1. Set an attainable goal for yourself. Start with one book per month or if you are finding that you are finishing it early, read another.  Don’t make it it stressful. Reading books need to be enjoyable and not add to the daily stress of life.
  2. Choose books that keep you wanting to read.  Don’t be afraid to put down a book half way through if you don’t like it or don’t know why you are reading it. We’ve all clicked on that bad movie on Netflix or chosen a book that showed promises but turned out a disappointment.  Don’t waste precious time on it. Put it down and away. You don’t have to be a ‘winner’ when it comes to reading books. 
  3. Read a diverse variety of books simultaneously. Rotate your reading between several books. I like a good fiction novel yet also I like books that are non-fiction and ones that help me grow personally. Read whatever genre comes to you when you feel like reading. You don’t have to read only one book before you move onto the next. You may read four to five books simultaneously. Read that fun book before bed. Read the non-fiction during the day or vice verse.
  4. Take it with you wherever you go.  Don’t rely on our “smart” mobile phones when you have wait time. Bring your book with you wherever you go so that when you find yourself with a bit of extra time, you can just bring it out and enjoy a few pages of the book. Use a kindle or download the app if you don’t want to carry a physical book around. 
  5. Find your reading nook. Do you have a favourite place you can just sit and read without being distracted?  Find your reading nook, make sure it’s well lit and comfortable. Bring your favourite drink. 
  6. Know yourself. By this, I mean to know your own eyes. For a long time I didn’t realise I didn’t finish some books because I was reading books printed in small fonts. Somewhere along in time, my eyes grew old, I became long-sighted and did not want to read the tiny fonts. I changed to buy books printed in big fonts or using a kindle where I can easily increase the font size. Reading became once again pleasurable. Oh, and of course my progressive lens helped. 
  7. Join a book club or set up a book club.  Discuss the books with a group. Reading is fun and not necessarily a lone activity. Hearing other views may open you up to new ideas.

I hope you find these tips useful. Happy reading ! 

2011: New Year, New Life , New Goals

Suddenly, 2010 is over just like that. Before I have a chance to give it a proper goodbye, 2011 creeps up on me faster than I can say farewell to all the marvelous experiences and lessons I have learnt throughout the past year. Of course there were sad times, stressful times and not so pleasant times, but then I choose to remember the good times, the happy times and all the things that makes life pleasant.

This year will definitely be one fascinating year. In every aspect, the world is changing. Climate change is causing many countries to experience snowfall unlike ever before. Belgium is having their coldest winter.. when I lived there over 20 years ago, it hardly snowed. When it did, it’ll melt away so soon I never got to make a snowman. Economies are recovering from the financial crisis, politics is changing and of course, we are all growing a year older. Age creeps up quietly on us like a cat watching a mouse.

So this year, in my attempt to become a better person, I have made some new resolutions. I’m not perfect and must admit I have not accomplished all my goals for 2010, but I will not let it deter me from accomplishing them in 2011. As long as you keep trying, you have not failed. (Just don’t keep trying forever and never get anything done!) Every year is like a new life. Another chance at living life the way you want it. So go out there and make 2011 your year!

Here are some of my ongoing goals as I try to make the most of what life has to offer.

1. Have a balanced lifestyle.
2. Maintain my weight (So far so good!)
3. Complain less
4. Appreciate more
5. Speak slower and louder.
6. Plan more, procastinate less and JUST DO IT!
7. Practice golf to a level that I’ll be good enough to go out on course.
8. Do NOT accumulate things you don’t need.
9. No handbag shopping (work or weekend models. I have no storage space!)
10. Run the 10K Marathon

They might not sound glamorous, but they are goals I’d be proud to have accomplished. What about you? What are your personal goals? 🙂 How are you planning to make your life better in 2011? Please share.

Remember you only get one chance at life!!! Have a great year everyone! I’m ready, are you?