Reading Goals: Take 2

An update on my current reading goal and how it’s changed my thoughts on them.

The Past:

I had managed to read 50 books during 2020 and I wanted to achieve the same in 2021, despite key changes in my life, including full-time work and a part-time MA, leaving me far busier than I had been in 2020.

To track my reading I use Storygraph, which I wrote a previous blog post on here. I set my official goal at 45 books but in my mind I still wanted to read 50.

I wanted to challenged myself to read as much as possible this year so I decided to set a high goal for myself even if I didn’t meet it.

Why not? It’s not as though there’d be any real consequences from not meeting my goal.

The Present:

I am 2 books behind my goal. And I am frustrated.

I desperately want to meet that goal of 45 (50) books this year but I just don’t think I can.

I am working, studying and I have chronic health issues so I just don’t have as much time to read anymore. And that’s fine.

I don’t need an arbitrary number hanging over my head, creating another item on my to-do list.

Reading is one of my favourite hobbies, so why am I turning it into a goal-driven task? I am putting more pressure on myself for not doing something that I enjoy because I am so busy with everything else.

Sometimes I just want to watch TV because I am knackered and there’s nothing wrong with that.

So screw the reading goals!

The Future:

….Sort of.

I am going to try to forget about how many books I’ve read but I am also going to keep tracking what I read.

I really like being able to look back on the types of books I’ve over a year and when I read more or less. I like being able to see trends in genres I read or whether I like long or short books (it’s actually medium for anyone wondering).

But I am going to let go of the pressure to read as much as possible and to always be reading more.

It doesn’t matter if I read 20 books in a year of 50 books in a year. What matters is that I enjoy reading.

So screw reading goals! (but also add me on Storygraph: my_literary_life)

New Year, New Books: My 2021 Reading Goals

It’s the start of a new year and I’ve been thinking about my new reading goals over the next twelve months. I managed to read 50 books last year, including trying out some new genres and books I wouldn’t normally read. However, I am nervous to set myself a similar goal for next year as I had significantly more free time in the past twelve months than normal, leaving me conflicted over what goals I want to set myself. Despite this, I think I’ve finally settled on what I want to achieve over the next year when it comes to reading.

1: Read between 45-50 books

This is because I would ultimately like to read 50 books again but have decided to give myself some room to land a bit under and be realistic about how busy I might be with a full-time job and part-time masters degree.

2: Read 4 Classics

In 2020 I set myself the challenge to face my fear of reading classic novels and succeeded in reading both Pride and Prejudice and Persuasion by Jane Austen (and quite enjoying them). Whilst I don’t think classic novels are ever going to be a go-to genre for me, I would still like to keep reading a few of them each year. I’ve also found that the audiobook versions are great to listen to if I’m having trouble sleeping.

3: Buy fewer books (Take with a pinch of salt)

I love buying new books and I really loved it in 2020 but this means there are a lot of books on my bookcase that I haven’t read yet so I am going to try my best to cut back. Instead of buying every other book that I want to read, I am going to focus on reading the books I already own which will hopefully save me some money without slowing down my reading.

4: Make time for reading

Finally, I just want to make time to read. This year I want to always make reading a priority because it is something that I desperately enjoy. Regardless of whether I complete any of the above goals, I definitely want to achieve this one because no matter how busy I am, I want to keep reading.