Opinion Column

PETAWAWA LIBRARY: How to read more in 2017

By Katelyn Schubert

Getty images

Getty images

Getting back into routine is often tricky after the holidays. Whether it be the thought of an entire new year commencing or recovering from family gatherings with obscene amounts of food and socialization, January often has people feeling the need to ‘get going again.’

Don’t worry…you are not alone out there. I, myself found getting back into the swing of things after December a little daunting, even if it was only a mere few weeks of holiday mentality. A lot of people also partake in the tradition of making resolutions for themselves. These days, resolutions seem harder to keep with the distractions of social media, the busyness of everyday life and routines and the pressure we put on ourselves. The one and only resolution I make for myself every year is simple…it’s to read more. And you can too without feeling the stress other resolutions often make you feel.

Sure, having the goal to visit the gym more or spending more time with friends and family are lovely, but are they realistic? I heard people being interviewed on the radio the other day about the resolutions they made for 2016 and whether or not they kept them. Out of about 20 people, only two kept their promises to themselves. Part of the reason is a break in routine. It is hard to introduce something time consuming and out of the ordinary into our familiar lives. The goal of reading more is slightly less discouraging. Try bringing a book with you everywhere you go. This includes at work and reading a few chapters over lunch, on vacation loading up an e-reader with a thousand titles while you get sunkissed, or waiting for an appointment to commence in a waiting room (three-year-old magazines are way less interesting). Having a book physically on you makes it that much easier to make time to read…time you didn’t even realize you had!

Another way to read more is to make time for reading. I make a point to limit my social media checking and television time to end every night at a certain hour. When that hour arrives, I always get in bed and read. We often don’t realize just how much time we spend scrolling through our Facebook accounts or watching meaningless programs on TV that we wont remember the next day. Making time for reading will not only make you feel better about your choices for time spent to yourself, but can also be the greatest form of entertainment.

Something I always tell patrons at the Library is to create a Goodreads account. Goodreads is a wonderful website and app that tracks your reading progress. The best part is, in January, you can set a personal goal of how many books you wish to read in 2017. The site will tell you if you are on track to meet your goal, or how many books you are behind. You can also ‘follow’ your friends to see what they are reading, get book suggestions, read reviews and enter some amazing contests. The site is every bookworm’s dream and at the end of every year, I make a point to read one more book than I did in the previous year.

It may be hard to admit it, but resolutions are really hard to keep. So why not set a goal to bring yourself more knowledge, increase your creativity and imagination, meet new friends and travel to far exotic locations, and expand your horizons…all by just picking up a great book. Set a ‘Read More’ goal in 2017 and visit the Petawawa Public Library to start the year off right!

Katelyn Schubert is the children and teen services co-ordinator at the Petawawa Public Library

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