It’s that time of year again, everyone: the end of an old chapter and the start of a new one. New Year’s Eve always has people talking, planning, and swearing up and down that this is their year. And maybe it is! I hope it is; we all want to better ourselves and keep our promises. If you can’t keep a promise to yourself, then what else could we do?
I definitely have a few of my own. I’d love to volunteer and travel. Maybe I’ll do both at the same time! And another grand resolution comes to my mind as well…reading. I want to read more! More books, more stories, more poetry, just more. However, resolutions don’t have to be limited to trying to read fifteen books a month. I mean, hey, if you want to then do it. But I’ve gathered a list of resolutions any bookworm can take part in. It’s never too late. Your story is just beginning.
1. Switch it up and change genres!
Do you usually go for fantasy? Try nonfiction! Is romance your all-time favorite? Give history a shot and enjoy the new feeling. You’ll be surprised what you may find that you like. Plus, who knows? Sometimes genres overlap in ways you never knew. Stepping out of your comfort zone is incredibly good for the soul.
2. Reading and exercise, people.
For those who love to read, but think working out is boring as hell (just like many people), this is good for your health overall! Remember that scene in Legally Blonde when Elle Woods is studying for the LSATs while working out? This could be you. Watch a book haul video on the treadmill, listen to an audiobook while walking in the park, reading and simple yoga moves. Therer are great ways to get moving.
3. Log every book you read in the past year!
Make a spreadsheet or, if you’re not into something too techy (me), get an inexpensive journal to document everything you read. Paper books, e-books…all of it. Twelve months is a long time, so don’t forget anything. Save that list for yourself and maybe pass it on!
4. Take on a bookish project.
If you’re also like me, you may not have a designated spot for your books (mine are in small piles on my desk). So if you want to clean, get organized, and give your books a home, take on a handy project. Buy yourself a bookcase and put it all together; set up a designated nook for your books; or create that dream window seat if you’re super handy. It’s the resolution that’ll be around all year long.
5. Re-read that books you read once and hated…
Now don’t go getting all negative and shut this one out. We all have that one book we skipped chapters of or just never gave it our full attention. Well, new year new you, right? Who you were when you read it isn’t the you that you are now! Books say different things to you the second time around. Plus, I do believe that everyone deserves a second chance.
6. Spend time reading with someone!
Whether it’s a significant other, your best friend, or your mom, there’s nothing wrong with putting aside a little time for reading together. Make it a Sunday routine to grab a spot on the couch in the living room or if you live somewhere that’s always warm (lucky you), go to a nearby park. Be comfortable in each other’s presence to read quietly and contently. Add to the magic with some post-reading discussions!
7. Read to someone.
If you’re looking to volunteer or do some genuine good, this is a great and humbling start. Do you have a grandparent or neighbor who can’t get out of the house like they used to? Perhaps the closest hospital to you is known for their pediatric ward. This is where you come in. Put aside some time in your day to visit that grandparent, neighbor, or sick child to read them a book you know they’d like. Or research your nearest hospital for volunteering opportunities to come and read to patients. I can assure you it will be the greatest start to your year. You could also just make time to read to the youngster in your family. They’ll always love and appreciate your time.
8. Go to a book review, signing, or reading!
These are some of the coolest gatherings you’ll ever go to. You’ve never been? This is your year! It’s time to scour the internet for this. Search all your favorite authors and their upcoming books and releases. Then search the events of your local bookstores. Go to something! You never know who you’ll meet or what you’ll start reading next.
9. Read a book with an honorary award
Have you ever seen the excitement build around a single novel with tons of great reviews and high acclaim? These are usually the ones that win a prize or award for their outstanding stories and their ability to open the reader’s mind. Don’t be left wondering what could possibly be so great: read it! Sometimes jumping on the bandwagon is a good choice.
10. Finish ALL the books you start.
Yes, you heard me. I know many of us are culprits of this: as soon as a book starts to turn from so-so to so slow, we shut it down. Don’t do that this time around; whatever you start this year, finish it. You’ll get to know the whole story as well as yourself and what you can do with a book when the going gets tough. At least when you finish it you’ll know for sure whether you’d do it all over again; who wants to be left wondering?
11. Donate, donate, donate!
This brings joy to all! I’ve brought all my old books to my local library because you know what? What I can’t use, someone else could. ‘Tis the season for giving to others. Don’t just toss your books, they are pretty much living stories that could bring some joy to a new owner. Shelters, schools, libraries, shops, and even people you know.
12. Email your favorite author(s).
I think this is absolutely awesome to do because aren’t authors some of the coolest people we know? I’ve emailed poets and authors whose work I’ve read and when they get back to me, the feeling is out of this world. I try not to freak out, but it sends you through the roof! It feels personal! Don’t be scared or shy, what they are to you, their readers are to them.
13. Buy a book in a new country or city.
The good ol’ travel bug. Everyone’s got it after the new year because new adventures are never a bad thing. No matter how far you go, if it’s someplace you’ve never been before, buy a book at their local shop. It will be your latest read as well as a token of the first trip of the new year.
I hope these resolutions help you figure out what you really want for the next twelve months. Don’t forget: there’s always a new chapter to start. It’s never too late to do whatever the hell you want.
Feature Image Via Visit Pensacola