should you make a yearly reading goal?

If you're on Goodreads, chances are you've set a 2018 Reading Challenge.

SO HAVE I. My current goal is an ambitious 80 books, and I'm only one book behind right now, so that truly is an accomplishment.

Reading challenges are fun, goals are fun, it's fun to have something to strive for. But recently I've seen the flaws in the whole system, or things that have made me slightly hasty to keep reaching for the goal this year.

Which means only one thing. PROS AND CONS LIST

reminder that these are just personal opinions and how it is for moi.

motivation to read 

the one thing that motivates me the most is the thought of the feeling after I accomplish my goal. The idea that in December I'll open Goodreads and see I have read eighty books in one year makes me so incredibly excited that I think I'm going to go ditch this post and read. And the best part is I start to appreciate reading again! best. feeling. ever.

it helps me to keep track of what I've read 

honestly, if the Reading Challenge didn't exist, I don't know how much I'd use Goodreads :P I like to make sure that every book counts towards my goal.

And honestly, without Goodreads, I definitely wouldn't remember half the things I read.. THAT'S PROBABLY REALLY BAD

it encourages you to review and discuss the book that you're reading

Goodreads always offers you the opportunity to comment when you're updating your place in a book and also lets you review after you read, and it makes reviewing feel less... difficult? It's right there for me, I can just type something and LOOK. I'VE REVIEWED.

I honestly feel so accomplished after writing even the smallest of reviews. Like I did something good for the bookish world with my measly one paragraph review.

making reading feel like a number count  

counting how many books I've read and calculating how many books I need to read makes it feel like... not... a hobby? Maybe not exactly chore, but definitely not something that's CAREFREE and relaxing.

it gets stressful 

Goodreads tells you if you're ahead or behind schedule and I honestly haven't decided if that's a good or bad thing. SURE, you know where you should be but it also could go like this:

"ohmyword I'm three books behind GO INTO PANIC MODE"

i love this gif

it's terrible when you don't reach your goal 

You're halfway through the year and you know there's no way you can read another 100 books in 6 months, you are ashamed, sad, you give up reading and become an anti literature monk.

see the problem?

OK but it actually feels discouraging when you don't reach your goal, like what am I doing wrong? You could always change your goal, but sometimes that feels even worse.

How do you feel about setting yearly reading goals? What is your reading goal for this year? What are some other pros and cons for reading goals? TALK

peace out y'all,


  1. My goal is to read 100 books this year, I might raise it.
    I think it's a fun way to track your progress, but I also get what you mean by stress. :)

  2. i'm using goodreads for the first time this year, and i've set a goal of 75 books - mainly so i don't stress myself out too much!
    i like being able to look back at what i've read, but it can feel like you're being pressured into reading, for sure.

    - charli :)

  3. I've given up on reading challenges years ago. I couldn't deal with the pressure of always being behind, and when I was ahead I was never far enough ahead, if you know what I mean.

    x Envy

  4. I've always thought (never counted my books before!) that I read around 100 books a year, so this year when I set myself a 50 book aim, I was fairly confident.. but Goodreads is telling me I'm 1 book behind already so eeek stressful! I definitely see the pros though, and think it's a fun way to remember all the books you've read!!

    Lexie x

  5. I honestly didn't think I would relate to the cons as much as I did. I love goodreads because I am able to keep track of all the books I've read and want to read (truly a life saver, to be honest) but I hate not reaching a reading goal. This year was the year I REALLY tried to stick to my goal and I did make it, but it was a bit of a struggle at the end. >.<

    But I'm that type of person who only wants to do something if there is an end goal so that is one of the pros to this challenge for me. Though, I TOTALLY UNDERSTAND HOW IT FEELS TO TURN YOUR HOBBY INTO SOMETHING THAT IS STRESSFUL. Because that's #notfun.

    Great post, dear! I really enjoyed reading it. <3

    xx Kenzie

  6. I totally agree with you! I like goodreads goals because they keep my reading organized and I like keeping track of things, but gosh I just feel so overwhelmed sometimes with that number looming over my head! This year I’ve set my goal a little lower.

  7. I've also been thinking about the flaws in setting reading goals recently. I love Goodreads, and I love how the reading challenge motivates me to read. I'm also a big fan of tracking things and making lists, and having my reading all documented in a tidy little website feels great (I'd be making physical reading lists all over the place otherwise). Goal setting can also be really fulfilling, but it definitely puts pressure on something that is supposed to be fun. What I like to do is to always set my reading challenge to something I know I can achieve. That way I always exceed it. The last time Goodreads told me I was 1 book behind on my challenge was maybe 3 years ago! It's probably cheating, but it keeps me feeling good about my reading.

    Brilliant post, Noor!

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