At the begining of 2008 I set a goal of reading 20 books by the end of the year.
Unless I do a lot of reading in the next two days I will fall just short of that goal at 19 books read. I was thinking of keeping my goal the same for 2009 when I read this article by Karl Rove in which Mr. Rove describes the reading contests that he had with President George W. Bush over the past three years.
The results he reports are as follows,
Year Books Read by Mr. Rove Books Read by Mr. Bush
2006 110 95
2007 76 51
2008 64 40
Though Mr. Rove won their competition three-years running, I think the amount that both men read is remarkable, especially in Mr. Bush’s case!
Keep in mind these books were serious books – I’m pretty sure they didn’t include anything by Dr. Seuss. (Most of the books listed were serious biographies and histories.)
Rove writes, “The reading competition reveals Mr. Bush’s focus on goals. It’s not about winning. A good-natured competition helps keep him centered and makes possible a clear mind and a high level of energy. He reads instead of watching TV. he reads on Air Force One and to relax and because he’s curious. He reads about the tasks at hand, often picking volumes because of the relevance to his challenges. And he’s right: I’ve won because he has a real job with enormous responsibilities. ”
It’s easy to make excuses for not achieving our goals, or to avoid stretching our minds altogether. After all Life has many demands!
When I read this article I was both inspired challenged. If the President of the United States finds the time to read 95 books in a year I should be able to do more than 19!
Anyone up for a reading competition of our own in 2009?