I said this on Tuesday but I really like pausing as one year turns to another and setting new goals, evaluating the year past, etc. It speaks to the control freak within me and brings out the type A firstborn tendencies I work hard to squelch during other times of the year. (Being a mom of six means I don't have much control at all and must learn to hold on loosely to any plans I make.)
Nevertheless, when it comes to a new year, I embrace the compulsion and just let my control freak flag fly for a few days.
One area in which I started setting goals a couple of years ago is reading. Before that I just read like a normal person might-- books came my way, I read them and promptly shelved or returned them. I had no idea what I'd read (save for a few memorable titles that replayed in my mind long after they were over), how much I was reading each year, or if there was any pattern to my reading. So I started a reading log to record what I'd read, with a few sentences about my feelings about the book. 2012 was my second year of this and I have grown quite fond of the practice. I know more about my reading habits than I did before I started.
In 2011 I read 60 books, which averaged to 5 books a month. Always one to try to up the ante on myself, I decided I'd try to beat that in 2012. If, I reasoned, I read one more book a month, I could read 72 books in 2012. Though it was down to the wire, I'm happy to report I did just that! I know, I know, it's crazy but I love knowing I did better this year than last. Will I try to top it in 2013? Come on... you already know the answer to that. Of course! I'd really like to read one more book a month and hit 84 books this year. One of the ways I think I can do that is (as I've written about before) listening to one book a month on audio. My library has a pretty decent collection, so I figured if I just keep a book on cd in my car and listen while I'm out running errands, sitting in the carpool line, etc., I can work in that one extra book and meet my (self-imposed, ridiculous) goal.
What books am I looking forward to reading in 2013? Check out my "Massive, Infinite TBR List" board over at Pinterest. I spent the better part of yesterday afternoon creating this board and had an absurd amount of fun doing so. What can I say? "I've grown too fond of books and it has turned my head." (Quote originally attributed to Louisa May Alcott but fitting here.) Check out my board and you just might find some books to grow fond of yourself.