I have always been a reader. Okay, not always. There was that first few years of my life, but my parents swear I taught myself to read when I was 4 (I don't remember it, and they've been known to exaggerate.) Since then, I've read.
I'm not going to claim that I've always put my reading time to good use. There are many things that are not exactly helpful in expanding one's horizons. I'm pretty sure those Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys years didn't help tons, but I enjoyed them at the time! I have read a few more classics than most non-English majors, and a LOT of light fiction. People told me that once I got to college and grad school, I wouldn't want to read for fun anymore because I'd be doing too much studying. People were wrong.
I will say this, though. I had a couple of years since I moved out west that I have read less than most of my previous life. This is a combination of a lot more time active, and the fact that for a while, I was feeling that I had absolutely no more space to dedicate toward books. Not only that, but I didn't want to keep moving all these books.
One thing that I didn't dedicate tons of reading time to was professional related things. Some, of course, but not anything on a consistent basis. Over a year ago, I read a graphic that someone posted on fb about reading and how someone who consistently read something like 15-30 min a day in their area of expertise could become a leading expert in their field within 7 years. It was an interesting thought. Not that I'm trying to become a leading expert in my field, but I do want to be good at what I do. I did start reading a little more, but maybe not a ton. It's amazing how that stuck with me, though.
In the last 8 months or so, things have been slower at work than I would like. It's been a concern. When I tried to figure out what to do, I asked myself what I could do with my time to be getting the most benefit from it as I possibly could. I also prayed about what to do with the time. The answer became studying, and it's been a ride. Now I have lots of new info and ideas, and I keep trying to figure out how to do a better job of presenting them. I've even started reading a book about sales to help give me some idea. I also have a book waiting about reading body language. I want to better be able to figure out when people are with me and when I need to change my tactics. Part of the art of PT is getting people to buy in to what you are teaching them. Whenever I can get that buy in, I get excellent results, because people are excited to do whatever I have given them at home. If they're making those changes, there is generally progress happening.
What I love about this whole reading thing is the way the world of ideas keeps expanding. Things that seem unrelated sometimes start to connect in ways that have the potential to be really exciting. I suppose some of that has been related to less blogging, but such is life. I currently have some seeds of ideas related to where I might possibly want to go with my work. I don't know if they are remotely possible, but I'm going to keep reading, keep expanding and testing. I love the growth that comes from all of that, even if the end goals shift a little due to all those horizons expanding and new possibilities opening up. I certainly hope we can shift to things being busier than what they were, but I can't even tell you how excited I am that this year has happened the way that it has and has started to make sense of the last 9 years of PT practice in a whole new way. The next decade could be freaking amazing!