Sometimes, I’m hit with despair. It usually happens when I’m scrolling through Goodreads or wandering around a bookstore. I suddenly have the realization that I’m never in my entire life going to have time to read all the books that I want to. Not only because the world is filled with so many stories, but also because more keep getting written. It’s overwhelming. What if I never get to read what would have been my favorite book because it’s lost in the sea of all the others? (And this isn’t even taking into account all the books that I want to make time to re-read.)
Once again, post-college life has left me disillusioned. I was sure I would have an abundance of time and motivation to finally spend hours reading “for fun” instead of for school. But I still find myself flipping through Instagram stories and watching Youtube vlogs in my spare time. Recently, I found an article that said if you spent the time you would normally spend on social media reading books, you could read around 200 in a year. That’s a lot! So what if I actually started doing that more? If I read on the bus each way instead of spending time on my phone? Or brought a book with to read in waiting rooms at dentist or doctor appointments?
It’s true–I probably won’t make it through every single book on my “to read” list. But I don’t think that should be a reason to give up trying. I also don’t think I need to let myself feel overwhelmed. After all, the goal of reading shouldn’t be to check off books like they’re chores, but instead, to savor them. Soak them in. Spend time underlining and writing in the margins. Immerse yourself in the stories.
So here’s to reading more. And here’s to not letting myself feel discouraged along the way.