2021: The Year of the Book

I believe that putting together a “quick fix” New Year’s resolution is more often than not just a trend followed until mid-February that doesn’t result in much of a reward. Suddenly trying to quit something or “go to the gym more often” can bring about awesome benefits if executed properly, but we’ve all seen these ideas fall apart quite quickly with a lack of plan or accountability. I want to introduce a resolution that is super easy to track and follow, and will certainly result in amazing benefits.

10 Pages a Day

A great New Year’s resolution that I encourage all of the amazing people on the Sled Dog team to try, is reading 10 pages of a non-fiction book every day. Trying to quit something drastic or doing something that may shred valuable hours of your day would be a fantastic new years resolution idea if it had a clear cut plan and was able to be sustained over a long period of time. Being humans on a tight schedule, these resolutions are usually pushed to the side after a short period of time and attempted next year in January with the same result.

Rather than setting yourself up for failure by attempting a heroic resolution, take a less sexy approach, one that involves flipping 5 pages every day.

Ozzy reading

Being humans on a tight schedule, these resolutions are usually pushed to the side after a short period of time and attempted next year in January with the same result.

When it comes to math, I am certainly not the person you should be asking for advice from, but with a couple of easy calculations (that I had to use my calculator for), it really isn’t hard to see how much everybody could benefit from reading 10 pages a day.

If I multiply 10 pages by each day of the year, even my slow brain knows that a lot of pages have been read. And if we divide that number by the average number of pages in a book (Say 250), you will have read about 15 books in one year. This number may be underwhelming for some and overwhelming for others, but the act of only spending 5-10 minutes reading every day is a tiny price to pay for the amount of knowledge you will gain.

You could expose yourself to 15 different thought patterns, or 15 new ideas that could elevate your level of thinking, making you a much more valuable member of society than if these ideas had never crossed your mind. 10 pages a day seems like quite a small price to pay for these types of results all happening within only one year.

What Should I Be Reading?

The truth is, I don’t really care what you read, as long as it gets done. I certainly have my recommendations and preferences that I will share with you, but the only real criteria for this resolution is that the books are non-fiction. Fiction books have their place, don’t get me wrong, but I don’t see them contributing much to what we’re trying to achieve on the Sled Dog team for this challenge.

We want real books that offer real insights and guidance in our life. Self-development, business, coaching, or autobiographies written by high achieving individuals would be great genres to begin with. Anything that could contribute to a new way of thinking, new information, or even books that will help you excel in a specific area important to you would be an excellent choice.

Even if your end goal is to try and quit something, it might be more beneficial to learn more about it and what the best way to go about breaking your habit is rather than just jumping into it with no real plan and getting frustrated right away.

Reading list

My excellent writing skills have now convinced you to take this journey with me, but by now you might be wondering which specific books you should turn the pages of first.

We have tons of suggestions to get you started in our Reading List, Beginning with our “Essentials” that we think everybody should read in order to create the proper mindset before moving on to other books, to more specific genres like business, coaching, or sport-specific literature.

Chasing Excellence Cover Photo by Ben Bergeron

Our first recommendation to start off the year. The first personal development book that we read and the foundation of everything we have learned since.

Obviously, I would never limit this journey to just these books, but I certainly believe that these are excellent places to start! Having read all of the listed books, I would highly recommend any and all of them and would love to hear some of your favourites to expand my own library.

Holding Yourself Accountable

I’ve talked a lot about sustainability with our goals and there’s good reason behind it. In my blog on Power Lists, I talked a fair bit about the theory of marginal gains, that a collection of small, seemingly meaningless events end up being a huge determinant of success when pieced together. This concept is reaffirmed when we add up 10 pages a day and end up reading 15 books per year. The one limitation in the marginal gains theory is that it requires time and sustained effort to be fulfilled.

I want to make this New Year’s Resolution as simple and effective for you as possible to make sure you can follow along with minimal chance of failure. In saying this, I would recommend a list of some variety to keep you on track. If reading 10 pages is your only daily task, you might not have to make a list and rather you could keep track in your head.

I, however, recommend using some variation of a list solely on the basis that I personally find crossing something off more enjoyable and easier to track than keeping count in my head. You are much more likely to follow through with something if it is on paper than in your head. That’s why I’m going to complete this resolution by putting a reminder in my phone repeating daily at 9 o’clock that I have to check off before going to bed.

Letting a friend or family member know that you are embarking on this journey or even completing the challenge with somebody else would be an amazing way to hold everybody accountable. Shoot me a message on Instagram and we can share thoughts on certain books, all the while holding each other accountable. Sounds like a win-win to me!

Follow Through

This New Year’s Resolution only works if you fully commit to what you’re doing and follow through with your actions. No more excuses and laziness. Let’s commit to this together and come out of 2021 as smarter, healthier, more disciplined, well-rounded individuals.

Connect with me on Instagram @OzzyStrength to follow along with my journey and to continue to push each other to get better!

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