Every year I write a piece about my New Year’s Resolutions.

Although many people tackle their fat, bad habits, or lack of productivity, my favorite resolutions have to do with my mind. Namely, reading.

Every year I set Reading Resolutions.

My first year, I set out to read all of Hemingway.

The next, I read C.S. Lewis.

Then I read Steinbeck.

Then it was E.M. Bounds.

Every year, I was successful. My mind was enriched.

I walked with the wise, and I believe I became wiser.

That’s all well and good, but the last few years, I’ve been struggling.

I’ve set reading resolutions that are self-defeating…but I’m setting them again.

Why? Because I’ve decided that to fail at a worthy goal is better than to be successful at a smaller goal.

I like challenges. Motivators call the goal I’ve set a “stretch goal”.

It’s one that pushes me.

To be honest, my reading resolutions weren’t pushing me.

I could honestly read all of Shakespeare’s works and not break a sweat.

The reason that my goal is self-defeating is because I’ve decided to read everything in my library that’s been unread to date.

The problem is that I keep buying books.

How can you not, right?

But, although I can’t recount victory in these resolutions, they have kept me from buying books that I normally would have normally bought. It has slowed me down…and that’s a good thing.

I now make wish lists on and come back to them on a rainy day…or a day when I’ve read everything in my library. My dream is to walk into a bookstore, pick up a book, and decide to read it right then and there because I have nothing else to read.

Yes, I have problems.

It’s probably early onset OCD. I make lists. I have files of reading lists dating back 20 years. I have a digital subject log of every chapter in every book in case I need something for preaching. I have spreadsheets, and even files of quotes, and illustrations all connecting to my library.

I know you’re probably not like me.

That’s probably also a good thing.

But I love books. Therefore, my favorite thing to do is to read, think about reading, and because I’m an “Achiever” according to the Gallup StrengthsFinder Test, I like to tick off a list and get ‘er done.

If you’d like to set a goal this year or be challenged to read more, start by tackling your own library, or maybe expand your reading by following somebody else’s plan.

Last year, set a reading challenge that some might find helpful:

Buy Peyton’s newest book “Reaching The Unreached: Becoming Raiders of the Lost Art” over on You can also download a free chapter and watch a cool trailer for the book HERE or click the image below.


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