The Simple Pleasure of Non-Committing

Do you ever make one of those commitments to yourself that later you regret? You look back and wonder what you were thinking? That’s what I did at the beginning of the year, and I’m just figuring out what a stupid idea it was.

In January, I made a goal of reading one book a week, fifty-two in a year.

At first, all went well. I picked up book after book, turned pages in eager anticipation, completing one book after another.

I was excited to add to my list, a little proud of my accomplishments. But pride sometimes gets in the way of reality. Because the truth is, in all the books I read, not one stands out. I can barely remember the plots of any, let alone the titles. It seems in my eagerness to complete my goal, I was so busy looking ahead to the next book, I wasn’t enjoying where I was at. It’s like driving twenty new cars in one day, and by the end, they all blur together.

Lately, I’ve noticed something else, too. I am bored. In all the millions of books on this earth, I can’t find one I like. How is that possible?

It happened when I took a joy and turned it into a chore. When passion became a duty.

I couldn’t tell you what prompted me to attempt this lofty goal, or what I was trying to achieve. Whether to impress others, or trying to prove something to myself, I am not certain. But I can tell you this, I am no longer counting the books I am reading. It doesn’t matter.

Reading isn’t a competition.

Passions and joys should be something we hold dear. I know that now. Not everything we do in life requires a commitment. Sometimes it is in the non-committing where we find the simplest pleasures.

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8 thoughts on “The Simple Pleasure of Non-Committing”

  1. Love the sentiments of this blog post! It’s so true. Sometimes we set ourselves little goals and they end up turning into a chore rather than anything else. Thanks for sharing, X

    1. Thank you for reading, Leanne! I love goals, to a point, but boy, I am learning how detrimental they can be to my life – sometimes they just suck the joy right out.

  2. I agree. It’s become popular lately to read 100 books in a year! or read faster! read more! etc. And I couldn’t help but wonder, are they enjoying this speed reading? Does this make you a better person or something? I will say that I did start a 2017 Books I’ve Read list and I do enjoy keeping track of the books I’ve read.

    It’s funny, I had a friend once say, “you read so slow!” and I had to agree. These days I don’t see it as something bad. I enjoy reading – and you’re right, it’s not a race.

    1. What is the point in reading if we don’t savor each word? I was once the speed-reader, and I admire those who take their time and read each sentence carefully. I’m learning to be that way, too.

  3. Yes!!!!! Love this!!!! I had a similar experience when I tried to read 50 books in a year. I’ve decided it’s not how many books I read that matters, it’s how much I get out of the story. So cool to hear I’m not the only one!

    1. Yes, exactly! It’s what we get out of them that matters. I’m finally enjoying my books (and remembering them), instead of rushing through them. Happy reading!

  4. I told myself I was going to try to crochet 20 minutes a day this year, because I hadn’t done much last year. I kept it up for about 2 weeks, then like your reading, it became a chore. Creation became stressful instead of restful. I let it go. Now, I binge crochet when I want to.

Would love to hear your thoughts.