How Keeping Track of My Reading Has Helped Me

Some of you might recall I set a goal back at the beginning of the year to keep track of my reading habits. (I know. Me and goals? What a surprise. /sarcasm) The purpose at the time was to help kick myself in the pants and start reading more than I had been. A librarian and an author, and I was barely getting a book a month in. Pitiful, right? So I started that spreadsheet, and I’ve dutifully been tracking my reading all year.

After the first 8 months, I’ve already read 28 books. Over 12,000 pages of reading.

Now, I know that for some of you, that’s chump change. But for me? I’m pretty proud of that. (Obviously. I mean, I’m writing a whole blog post about it, after all.) I’m already doing a fair bit in my life, so finding time to read is something I have to set as a priority, even though it sounds silly. Why prioritize something I like to do in my spare time and would voluntarily do tons of if left to my own devices?

It’s simple: because I have so many other things I’m doing, I need to make time for things that are also important and that I enjoy, or else they won’t happen.

When seen from this angle, it all seems so simple. I’m used to scheduling time to do the things I’m not really wanting to do. (Answer all those emails that built up while I was away on vacation, for one thing.) Why have all that practice on blocking off time if you never use it for something you enjoy?

Why does keeping track of the books I read help me read more? I have no idea. I can’t imagine it’s unique to me, but I’ve found that when I track things, I pay more attention to them. There have been a few spots through the year where the reading has ebbed, and I’ve noticed it’s ebbed because I’m keeping track of it. That’s enough of a reminder for me that I step up my game some and get back on track. When I wasn’t following it closely, the reading would ebb, and I’d blink and find a few months had passed without me reading a book. (Also, it helps that I’ve tracked how much I’ve been watching. Balance in all things.)

Anyway. That’s my update for the day. Now it’s back into the fray with work backlog. Wish me luck!

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