I used to read a lot. I mean constantly. I grew up in a house without cell phone service and all the computers were in public areas. In order to spend quiet time alone, I had to read in my bedroom. I remember my mother banning me from reading when I was enthralled with the Inkheart series as a kid because I was foregoing household responsibilities to read. Now that I work and I am a student, I find it difficult to read for pleasure as often as I used to. I had to ask myself why I don’t read more? Why was it so hard for me to pick up a book and just read it? In my quest to read more books and to read more often, I came to a few realizations: I had become a book collector, not a reader; I was caught up in what I “Should be reading” and not what I wanted to read; and I was comparing what I was reading to what everyone else was reading. After reflecting on these three things, I learned a few things about how to read more books, and how to read more often. I have read more in the last few months than I had in years.
Reading is a fantastic way to learn, increase your vocabulary, gain more perspectives, keep the mind young, and it’s downright relaxing and entertaining. I was caught up in how successful people take time to read and how many if not all good authors read a lot to learn more about writing. What I had forgotten was the nostalgic feelings I get when I curl up with a book to read with the intention to finish it in one or a few sittings. I used to love to read and I feel guilty for not reading more and reading more often. So why was I not reading more often? Especially if I loved it as much as I thought I did.
Why didn’t I read more?
I became a book collector, not a reader.
I had convinced myself at one point that future Brette had an extensive personal library at her disposal where she would collect all the books she had ever read and books she was going to read. After I started moving towards a minimalist lifestyle, I realized, in my already relatively large book collection, there were so many books I had yet to read and probably never would read. Future Brette had changed, yet I was still moving towards what I used to want, not what I want now. I was collecting books for the sake of having books. I was buying a new book or three every time I went to the thrift store and telling myself I “would read it one day.” I had a massive Amazon wish list for books and was purchasing books like crazy. The hard truth is that I was lying to myself. I was never going to read those “literary classics” that everyone is supposed to read but are actually god awful. But they littered my shelves. I had books that were completely out of my interests that I thought I would suddenly become the kind of person who enjoyed those books if I owned them. Continue reading “How To Read More Often”
I am the first to admit that I have an addictive personality. Like many people my age, I am addicted to my phone. I spend a lot of time on Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr, Snapchat, and YouTube. When I became aware of the amount of time I spent on my phone and how much of my life it consumed, I downloaded the app QualityTime and began tracking my phone usage. I decided for a period of time, I would just let the app track my time. Everyday it gives me a summary of my daily activity and every week is tells me the total hours I spent on my phone and the division of time between the apps I used. After about two months of tracking my usage, I can definitely say I have some form of phone addiction.
Continue reading “I’m Kicking My Phone Addiction”
As someone who has struggled with mental illness for a long time (you can read that story here), I can’t stress how important it is to find or identify your support group. You should never go through mental illness alone, and the odds are, your probably aren’t. There is someone in your life that cares and wants to help or understand.
A support group is a few people in your life that you trust. These people are there for you when you need to talk. They are there to listen. Maybe they can provide advice if that’s what you want or need. Often, they are simply someone who understands, loves or cares about you, and is there for you when you need them. Continue reading “How to Find Your Support Group”
Thank you letters are important. My parents made me write them growing up. Often they were scribbled misspelled “thank yous” on a card sent to the grandparents after Christmas and birthdays. When I got older, it was suggested I write thank you letters and cards but I almost always forgot to, felt guilty when I thought it was too late (it’s never too late BTW) and eventually got over it. I lost track of writing thank you letters, even though I have always loved sending and receiving mail. My grandmother once told me that she stopped sending certain family members money and gifts because Continue reading “Thank You Letters are Important!”
Right now, I am taking summer classes, working part time, and keeping track of all the spare time I have. I have so much free time right now. Even at my busiest I had a bunch of free time that I wasn’t optimizing. When I realized I wasn’t as busy as I thought I was, I saw all the time I was “wasting” on YouTube, Pinterest, tumblr, and the internet in general. It made me feel guilty about not being this super person who has it all and is always productive. When I started forcing productivity, I was exhausted and not actually accomplishing anything. I only wanted to be productive. This mindset was exactly the mindset I was trying to escape and I hadn’t realized it. I recently came to the hard realization that I was using “busy” and “productive” interchangeably (I have a post here about how I hate the word “busy”). I had simply swapped the super busy lifestyle with a “super productive” one. I think one of the first mistakes people make when they start having free time is trying Continue reading “I’m Not Obligated to be Productive”
It’s been well over a year since I went to Paris and I’m still in awe of what an amazing opportunity it was. Here is my post about my trip to Paris. I loved most of the experience, but there were a few things I did not like about the experience. I compiled some things I loved, things I didn’t love, and things I had mixed feelings about during my 10 days in Paris.
Continue reading “What I Loved and Hated About Paris”
You may have noticed I am not longer using a Wix site. I realized that I wanted to get serious about blogging and I knew that I couldn’t do that with Wix that way I Could with WordPress.
All my content not linked to the previous website is here (and with updated images!)
I will continue to work on this site and add more features as needed, but right now it has everything it it needs to function in the current moment.
Thank you for keeping up with me while I figure out blogging as well as where and how I want to do it!