I actually sat down and made a career vision board yesterday. It felt weird to put on paper what I’ve been thinking in my head for a while yet it also felt good. I don’t know if I’m ready to let anyone else see it but I know it’s there. I can look at it when I’m feeling down and need inspiration and motivation to keep going. As I said on Facebook, it’s not at all pretty to look at but it’s done. It’s probably more reflective of the ugly, messy journey that I’m on than if I had made it all sparkly and beautiful anyway.
While I’m not ready to show you my entire vision board, I will tell you that part of it deals with writing a book. That’s been a long standing dream of mine. I honestly can’t remember a time when I didn’t want to be a published author (which, I guess I sort of am. I was a contributing author in a book on writer’s block. You can see it on Amazon if you want. If you buy it, I get no money at all but it would make me feel good). I took a step towards that last year when I participated–and won–NaNoWriMo. I’m working on another book this year as well and at some point, will edit them both and start shopping them around.
Because there really is nothing like a good book. And if I can contribute to that, I will have achieved one of my major life goals.
But enough about me. Let’s focus instead on today’s step which is simply to read a book. Take 15 minutes and get through a chapter or two. If you’re not in the middle of one (or two or three like I am), take some time to find a new one and start it. If you don’t know what to read and you suffer from too many good book choices paralysis as I do occasionally, browse Goodreads or Amazon for recommendations. Ask friends on Facebook what they’re reading. Ask me. I’m happy to share what I’m reading, what I’ve read, and what I want to read (I do have a Pinterest board devoted to books but I have not updated it in months).
If you truly don’t have time to read today, then just make a list of books you want to read. Divide them into categories like career, fiction, classics, nonfiction/memoirs and commit to yourself that this weekend, you will choose one book from each category to read by the end of the year. A quote that Dave Ramsey used to say is “In 5 years, you’ll be the same person you are today except for the people you meet and the books you read”. He’s right. Books can have a tremendous impact on you as a person.
They can impact your happiness, too. Reading a book is a great escape from reality. A book can inspire you to make a change or fuel your creativity or take a risk or simply just provide entertainment. Books give us something in common with strangers. They can be great conversation starters. And when you start connecting more with yourself and others, your happiness level starts to go up which in turn leads to us being able to work on other aspects of our lives.
That’s the power of books.
So start reading.