Many business magnates say that the best way to achieve success and become smarter is by reading books. So, you go out and you buy a lot of books.
However, our intentions to read them all is one thing, but the time we have at our hands is a completely different thing. And I get how unnerving can be seeing all those books on your shelves you have abandoned or haven’t found the time to read.
Well, we have great news for you. It turns out, your overstuffed library with books you haven’t read is not a sign of failure and ignorance. Rather, it is a sign of intelligence.
Take for example Umberto Eco, whose library consisted of 30,000 volumes. And do you think he had time to read all of those? Of course not. However, being surrounded with so many books had a greater purpose. Namely, his library kept him curious and always hungry for knowledge because it reminded him of everything he doesn’t know.
“A private library is not an ego-boosting appendage but a research tool. Read books are far less valuable than unread ones. The library should contain as much of what you do not know as your financial means, mortgage rates, and the currently tight real-estate market allows you to put there.
You will accumulate more knowledge and more books as you grow older, and the growing number of unread books on the shelves will look at you menacingly. Indeed, the more you know, the larger the rows of unread books. Let us call this collection of unread books an anti-library.”
An anti-library is a very powerful reminder of your own limitations i.e. all the things you don’t know. When you are reminded daily of this, you will push yourself toward organizing your time better, making smarter decisions, and becoming more intellectually humble.
Why? Because it is a psychological fact that the most intelligent ones are full of doubts while the most ignorant ones are so full of themselves.
That’s why you should stop beating yourself up for not reading every book that’s on your shelf. They are a sign of how ahead you are of the majority of people.