Dealing with book stress?/TBR pressure

If you’re anything like me, your TBR (to be read) is incredibly long, and no matter how many books you read, the list never gets smaller. My TBR is a never ending list, which can really overwhelm me. I am always finding new books I want to read. Despite reading a hundred books a year, I’ll never run out of content to read. I don’t follow any reading challenges, or plan what I’m going to read next. I simply choose my books as and when I feel like it.

My TBR list is very long, despite never actively looking for books. I simply see books in book stores/library, see reviews on blogs or get recommended by others. I think I would be very overwhelmed if I looked for more, as my TBR would multiple! Do you actively search for books, or do you read as and when you see something that catches your eye? I’m interested to see,as I would love to be one of those people who follow new releases or book challenges.

The truth? I rarely look at my TBR, as I don’t want to overwhelm myself. The only time I look at my list is when I am adding a new book, or run out of unread books on my shelf/kindle. It is so satisfying when I return to my list and noticed I can cross of read books without even realizing they were on my TBR.

Thus, my trick to not become stressed with all the books I want to read? I don’t put the pressure on myself to read X,Y&Z. I simply pick up whatever book I desire. This is why I don’t do many #gifted book reviews, as the pressure to finish and enjoy the book takes part of the enjoyment out for me. (Unless it is a book I think I will be passionate about/really enjoy.)

I am a very organised person, and use to plan exactly what and when I would read. Switching genres and introducing intellectual challenging books. I would force myself to finish books I wasn’t particular enjoying, because I HAD to tick them off my list. (mental health even affected my reading). I would see what books were popular and felt the pressure to read them instantly. (Before I started posting on my blog).

Concluding that reading is so personal. Everyone has different reading tastes, thus will not enjoy the same books. THIS IS OKAY. Simply read and add books to your TBR that YOU will enjoy. It sounds so easy, and it may be for you. But for me, this was a difficult hurdle to overcome. Reading is a hobby, a way to relax. My escapism.


  1. I don’t have a problem with a tbr list but I do have a tbr list of books specifically which are books I’ve promised to review for publishers/authors. If this list gets too big (which it recently did) I do feel pressured to get it done, but I never let it get as bad as I did a few years ago. I felt compelled to agree to review books for authors who had requested it (on a previous blog I used to run). I was new to the world of book blogging in general and was excited by all the books I was receiving. I was definitely naive and it took time to overcome this issue, I just stopped reading and reviewing completely for a bit. So I do understand the pressures we put on ourselves for reading from our tbr lists πŸ™‚ These days my tbr list is just a reminder of all the books I want to read so it no longer overwhelmes me πŸ™‚

    I think the key is what you do, I’ve always picked my next read based on what I feel like. This means that a book I just recently got hold of might be my next read before one I got a month earlier. I’ve never been able to stick to reading books in the order they’re added to my list or some strange systems I’ve seen some bloggers come up with like throwing a dice to determine their next read, lol. I’m very emotion driven too so if I’m feeling down I don’t want to read a book which has an equally depressing or dark story. But I’d love the chance at doing challenges, I’ve seen several but have never tried them, mostly because I can’t think of any books I’d want to read for the challenges, lol πŸ˜€
    Great post by the way! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I used to have an overflowing to be read pile, but when I moved out of my parents house last year, I didn’t have the space to take them with me, and my parents weren’t in a position to keep hold of them. Because of this, I had to contend with the heart ache of getting rid of them.
    This released me in a way where I had never realised i felt trapped, and I was able to start again. Keeping minimal books on my shelf, stopped buying unnecessary books, and picking up a book as and when I felt like it, instead of feeling I had to drag myself through a pile of books I hadn’t read but had been piling up for years.
    My reading has picked up again instead of being in a book lull, and I would wholly recommend everyone going through their TBR pile to see if what’s on there is still relevant to the person you are today, as chances are, they are not. πŸ“š

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is a great comment! I feel lot’s of us with book blogs feel the need to have lot’s of books/read certain books,but once you take the pressure away, reading becomes more enjoyable again! I have a minimal bookshelf too!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Absolutely agree. I love looking St other people’s book blogs, of their personal libraries but I sometimes wonder at the pressures they put on themselves to maintain that perfect image. Minimal all the way now! πŸ“š

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My TBR is on paper and I try not to look at it as it stresses me out too! I’m trying to remember that it’s not a ‘to do’ list though, it’s just a reminder of all of the books that I love the sound of. And I really love learning what new releases are coming out. I love looking at Goodreads lists and seeing what different authors have added lately. Which is probably how it got so long πŸ˜…

    Liked by 1 person

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