You’d Be Happier If You Stopped Comparing Your Reading Habits

Posted 14 August, 2015 by Amanda / 12 Comments

discussionThere. I said it. I’m not sorry for saying it.

You. You, reading this post. Yeah, you. You would be happier and the people AROUND you would be happier if you quit comparing yourself to other readers and constantly found all the ways you don’t measure up.

Bout of Books is the PERFECT time to discuss that. (What?! Yeah. It starts Monday.)

No one BUT YOU cares whether you read fast or slow.

And really, how do you even DECIDE if you read fast or slow unless you compare yourself to others?

The book blogosphere is so concerned with what everyone else is reading and how much everyone else is reading and posting and woe woe woe because you can always find someone doing more.

What if you read what you wanted because you wanted to, not because everyone else was reading the book?

What if you read however much you read because that’s how much time you had to read?

What if you posted what you wanted to post how often your life would allow you to post?

What if you just… enjoyed the book you’re reading and maybe write a review about it or maybe not because oh, look, life happened and you didn’t feel like it?

The best, most freeing, feeling is to indulge your reading habit — because we all love books, amirite? — and enjoy the book you hold in your hand without worrying about how fast or slow you’re reading or what you’re going to say in a review or how your feelings are different than or the same as everyone else.

Listen, if you’re on Twitter complaining about how little you’re reading, chances are, you could be using your Twitter complaining time to read. If you’re on Twitter complaining about how slow you’re reading, you’re losing time reading by complaining on Twitter.

Do you see a pattern? Comparing your reading habits leads to unhappiness. When you spew that unhappiness out into the world, you affect everyone who has to listen or read it. Promote the positive. Celebrate the awesome.

Read. Listen. Consume books in whatever format speaks to you. A reader is a story lover, who devours stories whenever, however she can.


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12 Responses to “You’d Be Happier If You Stopped Comparing Your Reading Habits”

  1. Very True! I don’t really compare my reading habits to others on the blogosphere or at least I don’t think I do. Everyone reads differently, has different things going on in their lives that influence how much time they can dedicate to reading. As long as your enjoying what you read, to each their own!

    I think the same can be said about comparing blogging stats (like # of followers; # of ARC reviews) in the blogosphere. I know I was guilty of it for a while and I it can be a hard habit to break sometimes.
    SERIESous Book Reviews recently posted…Fresh Fridays: The Heartbreakers by Ali Novak (The Heartbreaker Chronicles #1)My Profile

  2. Jennifer @ Feminist Fairytale Reviews

    Yes yes yes!! I went through a phase where I was obsessed with what all the other blogs were doing, but I have finally gotten into a mindset that I am happy with what I do and how I blog.

    • Yes! I think it’s a natural part of the blogging process, and I’m sure I went through the same thing myself. I’m glad I came out of it, though, because like you, I’m much happier doing what I want. Long life the Great Historical Romance Bender! ;)

  3. This post is so true. I’m fine discussing reading habits if people are looking for some tips, for example. But other than that, comparing how much/how fast/what books someone is reading is rather pointless and doesn’t make anyone a happy reader
    Celine recently posted…Review: Jackaby by William RitterMy Profile

    • Right. And what sucks is that if you’ve been dragged into a conversation with someone else who’s comparing, then chances are, you’re going to be dragged down with them.

  4. So much yes to this! I know I suffer bouts of this. I’m hoping that I’m finally out of it. I’m also done labeling myself as a failure just because I have ambitious goals. Accomplishing anything of of any list is just that, an accomplishment. Betting yourself up or comparing to others only steals your own joy.

    Thank you for this post Amanda!
    Stephanie @ Once Upon a Chapter recently posted…Veronica Mars: The Thousand Dollar Tan Line by Rob Thomas & Jennifer Graham *Stephanie’s Review*My Profile

    • Yes. No more failures! Nothing’s wrong with wanting to accomplish a lot… as long as you balance it with the reality of how much time and energy you can put toward blogging. I read, I review, I connect with awesome people, and that’s what matters most to me.

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