Why “Read More Books” is Always My New Year’s Resolution
It’s that time of year again! New Year’s Resolutions. While I don’t make many resolutions for the new year—I try not to overhaul my life all at once—there is one thing that is always on my list: Read more books. While I enjoy a good story, there are benefits of reading that go beyond the story itself.
This year, I aim to read a book a week. I’m a natural reader and have always been one, so it’s not difficult for me to set a goal of reading and stick with it. However, I understand that not everyone has the thirst for reading like I do. But I do think that even if you’re not a self-proclaimed bibliophile, it’s still important for every creative to set aside time to read. It doesn’t have to be a super ambitious book-a-week goal like mine. The key here is “more”—just read more, whatever that may mean to you. Here’s why:
6 Benefits of Reading
Reading trains your brain to think in story.
And marketing your brand is mostly about telling a story. The more you read, the easier it will be for you to recognize the components of storytelling.
It’s a great way to learn for your business.
The business books I read in 2017 include:
- The New One Minute Manager by Ken Blanchard
- The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell
- Radical Focus by Christina Wodtke
- Recipe for Press by Amy Flurry (a former Southern C alum!)
- Building a Storybrand by Donald Miller.
Reading gives you whitespace.
I didn’t read all business books this year. In fact, I read mostly fiction and a select handful of memoirs. Reading gives me escape, the whitespace I need to press the reset button on my thinking, especially after a day of running a business and running a household. I find that the busier that I get, the more I need my 20 minutes of reading each night just to reset my brain. Some of my favorite fiction from last year:
- The Identicals by Elin Hilderbrand
- The Stars are Fire by Anita Shreve
- Elizabeth Strout’s Anything is Possible
- The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah.
I’m a good role model when I read.
I don’t read on a kindle or on my phone or iPad. I read books. Real books. I have a 7-year-old son and I want to encourage him to read, so what’s better than being a role model for him? And he needs the transparency that a real book allows. The more he sees me reading, the more likely he is to reach for a book himself.
Good readers make for good writers.
If you do a lot of copy writing for your business like I do, it pays to read. Just as reading trains your brain to think in story, reading helps your writing – especially in regards to cadence, vocabulary and sentence structure. In fact, I find that my writing suffers when I take long breaks from reading.
Reading builds community.
I love to talk about books with other people and to share the books that I’ve read. And I crave suggestions and am curious as to what everyone else is reading. I had a friend over on New Year’s Eve and she’s currently reading Simon Sinek’s Start With Why and raved about it. I’m putting it on my list!
In 2017, I read 39 books and this year I’ll need to read more to reach my book-a-week goal. I have Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan on my list for fiction along with Tom Hank’s book of short stories, Uncommon Type. For my business reads, I have Essentialism by Greg McKeown and the aforementioned Simon Sinek book on my nightstand.
So, I need your suggestions to fill out my 52 book goal this year. What book did you read this year that you’d like to share? Business-related, personal growth, fiction, memoir? I can’t wait to see what everyone recommends. Happy reading!