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A Reading "Challenge"

books reading

I want to read more

It’s one of those things where I enjoy it, but can’t get started often (thanks ADHD). I go in spells of reading all the time, then not reading at all for several months, then getting back into it. I also have a habit of getting a library card, using it once, returning the book, losing the card, and forgetting about it. Times have changed with that at least. My local library system has expanded to several counties, I can use my card at any library I can think of, and use it for online books, even if their selection is pretty bad and arbitrarily scarce. I mean, really? Only one copy per book per 60+ libraries?

I hate to use the word “New Year’s Resolution” to describe my renewed motivation to actually make a habit of doing different activities in my spare time other than scroll social media and play a game I’m fixated on, but it’s almost a new year and I guess this qualifies. I’ve already picked up a book that I’ve been reading for about a month and a half now. I’ve had to renew the loan 3 times already, but it’s a massive book, over 1,500 ebook pages on a 10.2 inch display in portrait orientation.

The Plan

1. Read only one book at a time

Especially with an attention disorder, reading more than one book at a time makes it much harder to get the motivation to read at any given moment. It’s the same kind of decision paralysis that you may get from trying to find something to watch on a streaming service, not to mention the plot lines might get scrambled into a mess and I might get lost. However, this is primarily an attention thing. The hardest challenge I have is to get started with something. Once I start reading, I’m fine and I’ll at least read a chapter or two, or occasionally binge the last half of a novel in one sitting. By limiting my options, this will help a lot.

2. When I find myself wondering what to do, pick up the book

At least, if I don’t have other things I’m procrastinating on. My biggest problem is being bored half the time and not being able to figure out how to relax, so I just default to scrolling my phone or sitting and staring into nothing. If I just pick up the book and start reading, I’ll be occupied. Problem solved.

3. Keep track of all the books I’ve read

This is completely arbitrary but I like to look back on what I’ve read. I won’t actually review anything, just list that I’ve actually read something, that’s all. I will put the list on its own page.

I have no set goal for this, I just want to stop getting stuck in a loop of indecision and executive dysfunction. I hope I can actually stick to some modicum of a routine. For now, I guess I just have to try.