Things I want to change in 2016

I have spent quite a lot of time reflecting on 2015 from a personal and professional viewpoint and although I’m not inclined to discuss the latter on the blog, I will do so for the former. One of the things that I’ve definitely been aware of for a long time is that I’ve neglected my reading and my blog terribly in 2015.

Many has posted new year’s resolutions for 2016 and although I’m usually oppose to having resolutions, because I never stick to them, I am most confident in my intentions in sticking to the ones I’ve made for this year. This goes without saying that reading is one. I miss the enthusiasm I’ve had for reading and blogging in 2013 and 2014.

I have anxiety and reading has long been my method of relaxing and escaping from stress. In neglecting this hobby of mine, I’ve realized that maybe I’ve had a difficult year in 2015 for precisely this reason, as I allowed myself to stress more and relax less. There are a few things I want to do, not only to blog more, but in general just to make more time for reading and finding alternative ways to handle stress.

Breaking bad habits

Part of having anxiety, is the fact that I ruminate. A lot. About things I can never change and most likely will never happen. This affects my ability to switch off and this has got to change. I’m focusing on the wrong things at the expense of things that used to make me happy. I have to find a way to not spend hours ruminating about nonsense where I could use my time more constructively. I’m yet unsure on how to do this, but I’m willing to look into relaxing activities like meditating, walking, etc.

Learn to read faster

I want to learn to read faster. No, I don’t want to learn speed reading, I just want to read faster and still retain comprehension. I’m a bit of a pedantic reader, reading passages over and over again for various reasons: I either didn’t concentrate the first time I’ve read it,  or it’s so beautiful I want to read it again.  I also subvocalize.

same paragraph
Do re-reads

One thing I definitely want to do this year is re-read some of my favourites. I’m convinced that re-reading favourites are almost always the number one cure for any reading slump. I have a shelf on Goodreads for re-reads. Which one should I read first?

winnie

Find new locations to read

A week ago I went to sit by the ocean after work to read.  Listening to the waves crashing against the rocks were soothing and relaxing and although I didn’t read much (as I had company) I have managed to read a chapter quicker than what I normally would. Sometimes a change in location where I normally would read is a good change. This year I plan on seeking out alternative reading spots: libraries, the sea, old bookstores and cafes, etc.

101-dalmations-anita reading

Challenges

Although I failed miserably in my 2015 reading challenge on goodreads and have made almost no progress on my classics club challenge, I plan on changing that. Simply, I want to meet the 2016 reading challenge this year and read at least 3 classics towards completing the classic club challenge. For the latter, I might participate in more of the classic club spins.

I have signed up for the #ReadMyOwnDamnBooks challenge (more information on Andi’s blog, Estella’s Revenge). It’s quite explanatory – just reading more of your own books this year. Which I have a lot of.

I am also considering doing Katie from Doing Dewey’s Reluctant Romantic Challenge where you can read a genre you don’t like for  the month of February.

Quit twitter

Not quite! 🙂

For those who have a more personal relationship with me, know that I have two twitter accounts. One for personal use and one for my blog. Unfortunately, I can only really concentrate on ONE at a time and the other always suffers.

Let’s face it; Twitter is FUN. I check it several times a day. It’s a great source for not only news, but also jokes and let’s be honest, most times I was there for the jokes. But it’s time consuming, which impacts my reading time. I spent more time reading Twitter (and conversing with others on there) than reading books.  So as I’ve said previously, along with not reading and blogging much, I also haven’t been very active on the twitter account that you’re all following me on. That isn’t so much a concern for me, what was concerning was that when I eventually paid more attention, I realized how much I’ve fallen out of the loop in terms of the book world. I had no idea that one of my favourite authors was releasing a new book years after her last.

So I’ve decided to not only clean up my twitter account, but I unfollowed over 400 people. Less I have to read, the less I’ll come back to it.  Not the greatest method, but It’s working for me. I filled my timeline with so much crap, that it had to happen sooner or later. I did this, because I don’t intend on deactivating my account, but I will not be using it as often, or not at all.  To those who I have unfollowed, it wasn’t because you did something wrong – I’ll catch you on my blog account: thebookmusings.

Dabble in poetry and keeping a journal

Secret: I love poetry. I always have, but I haven’t read any in many years. In high school, one of my coping mechanisms was to write. Not poetry, but essays and keeping a journal. I want to write more, whether it’s something I will post on a social platform, I still don’t know.  And I’ve bought a few journals, so I’m definitely doing that!

So what are some things you plan on changing this year? Any new year’s resolutions you have, other than book related?