A Delightful To-Do Task: Read the Books I Own

By July 20, 2009 culture No Comments

Last summer, I became aware of an online challenge called 101 in 1,001. The premise is to develop a list of 101 things you want to complete in the next 1,001 days (that’s approximately 33 months). Being the procrastinating sort, I need some help in getting things done, so I decided to join up, in hope that I would cross some things off the mental list that I regularly avoid.

Some of my goals are task-related responsibilities that I’ve put off (like sorting through college paperwork files—ick!) because other things catch my fancy; some are related to developing character traits that I am currently lacking (like developing a system for tracking—and curtailing—my miscellaneous spending).


Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers. —Charles W. Eliot, The Happy Life, 1896

One goal that is immensely enjoyable in its pursuit and completion is to read the books I own . . . these are the books that have taken up space on my shelves these many years, shuffled about, cracked open then forgotten about. I’ve pulled these books from my shelves and stacked them on my office floor, right by my desk. The stack has been in place for several months now, ever-so-slowly decreasing in height. (For some reason books do not constitute clutter in my mind.)

My resolve to read what I already own and my method of keeping them in sight as a reminder fits well with the most recent Booking Through Thursday questions, which ask about our unread books and how those books are stored and arranged. Well, my unread pile is split in two stacks (a single stack would certainly topple) and placed in the middle of my office floor.

According to my 101 in 1,001 deadline, I have until May 16, 2011, to finish them off. I don’t think that will be a problem—as long as I don’t add too many more to the top . . . which isn’t likely!

Make your mission irresistible to donors. Schedule a 15-minute Change Chat today.