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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