Make Reading Inevitable

One of my big goals this year is to read one book every 10 days.  That’s 36 books to read before Christmas.

Inevitable thinking is about asking one question: “What can I do to make the outcome I want INEVITABLE?”  The phrasing of that question prompts you to think about things differently.  Instead of just stating the goal – I want to read 1 book every 10 days – you are forced to delve deeper to take actions that make sure it is guaranteed to happen.

In order to keep pace with my reading goal I have leveraged the same tool that has kept me blogging every week for over 5 years and kept my GitHub streak going strong (currently at 84 days in a row!)

I’m keeping my reading history in a spreadsheet on Google Docs:


Then I have a small script scheduled to run every hour.  It reads this spreadsheet, finds the most recent date I finished a book and if it was more than 10 days ago I get a rather offensive email hounding me to read a book.  I’ll continue to get one email every hour until I finish a book and update the spreadsheet.

This simple nag has proven effective at changing my behaviour over the long term.  With this system in place I’m confident I’ll hit my reading goal this year.