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For those of you that follow this blog, you know my love of reading. This week, because of my low energy (I’m still sick), I want to talk about why I love reading and why I set reading goals every year.

I have never been a big fan of fiction books.. I love a good story, but I love learning more. I’m constantly seeking new information with the hope of just finding one or more things I can do or use to make my life easier and more productive. Some books I read are philosophical, while others are more about hard science like physics, astronomy, or history. I also enjoy reading biographies. It is fascinating to see how others overcome great obstacles and win.

Whenever I get sick, I try to determine why or what I do that caused me to get sick. Colds and flus are just a nuisance. During the holidays I eat everything. I eat cakes, cookies, chocolate, junk food, you name it. When we have family visiting, you can also kick the sleep schedule, workout routine, and all the rest to the curb. Yeah, that’s why I’m sick. But there’s a silver lining. My sickness caused me to watch a few films and purchase a book about whole-food, plant-based diets. It really got me thinking, and I will make my transition to this lifestyle in February. I’m reading the Forks over Knives book now and will put that up in a review once I’m done. The book just makes great sense.

I also read a lot of books simultaneously. For example, I am reading 8 non-fiction books now and one fiction book. This is normally the ratio of non-fiction to fiction I read throughout the year. Of the 73 books I read last year, only 12 books were fiction books.

I enjoy reading books because you learn from other people. The people that take time to write a book about a particular topic are normally folks who have dedicated their lives to a specific area. They know the topic inside and out. They also know the pitfalls of trying to adopt the ideas in their book. I never try to adopt everything an author recommends. I look for one or two items that make sense regarding my life. For example, the very first thing I adopted out of the book: Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-free productivity, by David Allen was his 2-minute rule. This rule recommends that if we run across anything in our life that takes less than two minutes to complete, you do it–right now and be done with it. This was life-changing for me.

When I read The 7 habits of Highly Effective People, by Stephen Covey, I learned about the 7th habit labeled “Sharpening the Saw”. Again, this was life-changing. Sharpening the Saw is about improving those things in your life that have the greatest impact on everything else, like physical exercise, reading broadly, and planning.

Finally, when I read Mini Habits, by Stephen Guise, the one thing I grasped from my first reading was building habits by establishing extremely small thresholds for each habit I wanted to adopt. Who can’t do one push-up a day? Another huge game changer.

My life improved by reading these books. Each day I look for more of these game changers. One little tweak to my daily life that can bring huge benefits.

If you are not a huge fan of reading, I challenge you to fix that–NOW! We can all learn so much from those that have struggled with the same things we do and have found solutions to these problems. All it takes is a few bucks and your time. Start small. Dedicate 10 minutes of your day to read a few pages (say 5 or 10). It doesn’t matter the amount you read, just make it a daily habit. Before long you’ll be knocking out a lot of books and will reap the benefits of doing so. Think about it. If you could learn one thing you could add to your life that would change it dramatically, wouldn’t that 10 minutes a day be worth it? I think so.

Well, that’s it for today. I’m heading back to my herbal tea and a nap, so I can be done with this stupid cold. Have a great day folks!

Until next time…

Dave