I have a confession to make. I hate reading. I can read and do read on a regular basis, it's just not something that I do for personal enjoyment. When I have spare time, I will mostly be found watching television or playing video games. I could be Fred Savage's character from the movie "The Princess Bride" all grown up. When I read it is for information gathering. All through high school and university I would scan through the assigned texts as quickly as possible in order to find the main themes and elements, as well as quotes that would support my thesis in any essay or exam. Gather the information, pass the test. That was the process. I am not a reader. I am a researcher. As a business owner, I still find myself using the skill of reading to research for my clients and to apply the knowledge I have gained to assist in making improvements to their company. This is very useful, but it is not enough. I recently attended a seminar with other small business owners. The question was asked "How many of you read?" I was embarrassed to be the only one not to raise my hand. Of course I read. I just don't often do it for fun or as a hobby. The last book I read was R.A. Dickey's "Wherever I Wind Up" an autobiography of the Cy Young winning pitcher who went through so much trial and tribulation to arrive at his goal of being a major league pitcher. It was very inspiring, and I read it in a few days. But that was several months ago, and I honestly can't remember the last book I read before that one. So, at that seminar I made a commitment. I committed (out loud to the group) to reading at least 1 business-related or personal development book per month. This blog is how I am going to keep myself accountable. I am going to write about the books I read each month and how they are helping me develop as a business owner and, more importantly, as a person. I have decided to start with Steven R. Covey's "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People". I am familiar with many of the concepts in this book through various classes and seminars that I have attended. I certainly want to be more effective in what I am doing and can make room for some better habits, so I believe that this book is a good place to start. Besides, I have always been told "the book is better." I would really appreciate your thoughts and comments. What are books that you have found help you in either your professional or personal development? What are things that you have done to help keep yourself accountable in goals or commitments you have made?