No Turning Back

JoAnna Bennett

JoAnna Bennett, O’Brien Communications Group

April 21, 2022

I’ve always been a serial reader. And by serial reader I mean I’d read one book cover-to-cover before I’d start another. Sometimes I’d get through a book quickly, but other times it took a while to get through the dense ones. And if I couldn’t finish it, I’d usually engage in some negative self-talk before starting a new title. But since starting my new habit of listening to audio books, I’ve realized I don’t have to be so rigid. If I’m listening to a book while driving, I can read a book when I’m not driving. And if I’m capable of reading one title and listening to another, why can’t I read two titles at the same time.

Reading in Parallel

Back in February I began reading Mindsight by Daniel Siegel. At times, it’s a bit heavy and difficult to read. My previous rigid way of thinking would have left the book on my nightstand. I’d look at it every night for a few weeks until I finally got the courage to admit defeat, put it on my bookshelf, remind myself of how unintelligent I am, and start a new title. But in my new, more integrated way of thinking, I just put it down on that same nightstand and read a new title. Once I’m done, I might feel more invigorated and ready to dig back in. Since February when I began Mindsight, I’ve listened to one-and-a-half audio books and read four other titles. I have about 60 pages left in Mindsight and I can’t wait to finish it – even if it takes a few more weeks.

Being More Discerning with My Time

Back in January, I made myself a promise. I promised I would be more discerning with my time. With that in mind, I realized my new reading style is also helping me with my promise. Instead of negative self-talk and admitting defeat, why not just keep on reading? I can help my state of mind by getting into a lighter topic.

And I can help my sense of self by learning to let go of the rigidity.