2021 is now in the 2nd month. Can you believe that? Already! Here I am about to share my 2021 reading challenge with you when I realize I haven't even mentioned what I did in 2020. Well I'm happy to announce, more like elated and jumping over the moon, that I read a total of 40 books in 2020. A feat like no other. I cannot recall, in all my adult life, reading so many books in any given year. So, am I proud? Heck yes!
When I decided to do a reading challenge I had this brilliant idea that since it was going to be 2020 why not add 20+20 and read that in books. What a way to determine a challenge! Frankly I never knew I'd make it, after all, I had only read 7 books in 2019 and 4 the year before that, so who was I fooling with 40 books in a year? Well I announced it on my Instagram and Facebook pages and set out to read my first book on the 1st of January 2020..."Stuart Little" by E.B. White. You wanna know what Stuart said that motivated me to stop doubting the very challenge I had set for myself? He said, "That's not an impossible situation. It's bad, but it's not impossible." I laughed when I read this while thinking about my #bookchallenge, but I said, you know, Stuart is right, I may think I've put myself in a bad situation, worse so because I announced it on social media, but the truth is, it wasn't impossible. I only needed to try. And that is what I did.
One of the things I loved, while getting my #readinggroove back last year, is that I didn't limit myself to a specific genre. I read just about anything; from romance to self-help and motivational to spiritual. And I also paced myself; if I felt like reading I did and if I didn't, well then, I just didn't. And it paid off! I read a total of 40 books. Mind you, I went down to the wire and on day 366 when I had one more to go to make my challenge, I searched desperately through my Scribd account to find something short that would allow me to make it across the finish line and I did. I read "The Positive Dog" by Jon Gordon. This book spoke a lot about faith over fear and choosing the power of positivity to guide you throughout your life.
What Made My 2020 List?
I'd have to say that the top five (5) books on my 2020 list were:
Stuart Little by E.B. White. Yes, surprize, surprize, it had quite a few good takeaways.
Year Of Yes by Shonda Rhimes. Learning how to say 'Yes' and coping with the fears associated with saying yes. By the way, this was my very first audiobook and I was hooked from there!
We Are Going To Need More Wine by Gabrielle Union. A candid and vulnerable presentation that dealt with issues such as sexual abuse that we tend to push under the rug. And with all of that she rolled up some good humour inside as well.
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. A story that encapsulates the injustices that continues to plague our society everyday and the continued fight for justice.
The Power of the Spoken Word by Florence Scovel Shinn. The more we pay attention to how we speak the more we will notice how things around us begin to change. As the Bible says, "there is death and life in the power of the tongue."
What's On My List for 2021?
Your guess is as good as mine. LOL! However, I have set my challenge at 50 books for this year. I'm off to a slower start than last year this time, but hey, if I did it last year, I certainly can try my best for this year. What's on your list for this year?
Tips For Getting Back Into The Reading Groove
Read at your own pace. Don't get overwhelmed by what others are posting on social media, they are not you. Tackle one book at a time, at a speed only you will appreciate.
Read whatever you want. As long as it doesn't go against the very fiber of your being then read just about everything. Not much is off limits for me as I find lessons in everything.
Join a book club or a reading buddy. Not a must, but a book club encourages you to read more. It can be just you and a friend, or you can find a community online to join.
Follow book accounts on social media. They share insights and recommendations on a regular.
Create a Goodreads account. It helps you keep track of what you read or want to read and they also give recommendations.
Try E-books and Audiobooks. I have the Kindle and Scribd apps on my phone and tablet. That way I can take my books with me anywhere and read or listen at any point in time. Scribd offers a 60-day free trial and with the Kindle app you can search for free books on a daily basis or opt for a monthly subscription.
Try to finish what you start. I know this is hard, especially if you are not digging the book at first, but sometimes it actually turns out good. Other times it really sucks to the end, but look at the good side, you would have read one more book and you may have learnt a word or two. Hmmm...there's always something!
Anyway my friends, whether you set a challenge for yourself or not, try to include at least one book on your 2021 to-do list and as always have fun with it and try something new.
Blessings, Love & Light
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