A new year is a great time for fresh beginnings. Leading up to a new year, most people fastidiously (or even offhandishly – there are no rules) map out things they want to accomplish in the new year. Personally, I think this is a great idea. Unfortunately, I’m not one of those people. I have never set a single new year’s resolution in my life. I tend to approach a new year at a leisurely stroll. Sometimes it passes me by, and I don’t even notice – I’m too distracted by the scenery.

There is something I want to do this year though – I want to read more. I’m not going into the reasons why, but trust me, the reasons are very good. To achieve this, I have to change my behaviour a little bit, so what follows are reminders to myself. These don’t qualify as ‘resolutions’ so it’s a win-win in that I won’t break my implicit streak of no-new-year-resolutions-broken.

You’re welcome to take them on board if you think they will work for you too!

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Read genres and subjects you don’t know anything/much about

This should be quite obvious. Studies on the nutritional value of acorns or a socio-economical dissection of the zoot suit – it should all be fair game. (Actually hoping the book on the zoot exists!)

Read things you might disagree with

We tend to get most of our information online and whether we like it or not, the information we receive is heavily curated. I’m guilty of receiving most of my news via Twitter, for an example. We interact with people with similar world views, we follow people we tend to agree with, we’re served select content based on things we like and our search histories. The net result is a safe cocoon we’ve built for ourselves where we rest easy assuming nothing silly will happen in the world, surely people won’t elect an orange as Supreme Leader – until they do.

No one has the power to filter your books except you. So yeah, read things that you disagree with, even if it makes you uncomfortable.

Life is too short for bad books (or bad writing) – let that sh*t go

Sometimes you’re just not in the mood for a certain book – sometimes it’s just bad. Try coming back to it later, and if it still doesn’t work, just let it go. Read something else. Don’t list it under “DNF” – that closet full of good intentions. Just move on instead. If it’s meant to be, you’ll find each other again some other time.

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Well, this all seems do-able from where I’m sitting. But Life, she doth throw curveballs. Either way, I’m planning to enjoy the ride. Hello, 2017!

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