Books are amazing things that can be both entertaining and beneficial to your health. They are almost like tools for a healthy lifestyle. Those who don’t read can’t understand the love for reading, but those who read on a daily basis know the importance of diving into a good book.
No matter how much stress you have at work, in your personal relationships, or countless other issues faced in daily life, it all just slips away when you lose yourself in a great story. A well-written novel can transport you to other realms, while an engaging article will distract you and keep you in the present moment, letting tensions drain away and allowing you to relax.
Improve Your Knowledge
Everything you read fills your head with new bits of information, and you never know when it might come in handy. The more knowledge you have, the better-equipped you are to tackle any challenge you’ll ever face. Additionally, here’s a bit of food for thought: should you ever find yourself in dire circumstances, remember that although you might lose everything else—your job, your possessions, your money, even your health, knowledge can never be taken from you.
Stronger Analytical Thinking Skills
Should you ever have an opportunity to discuss the book with others, you’ll be able to state your opinions clearly, as you’ve taken the time to really consider all the aspects involved.
The more you read the more information you add into your brain. This information proves helpful in dire circumstances when you need to make last-minute decisions, or decide between the lesser of two evils for president.
Improved Focus and Concentration
In our internet-crazed world, attention is drawn in a million different directions at once as we multitask through every day. In a single 5-minute span, the average person will divide their time between working on a task, checking email, chatting with a couple of people, monitoring their smartphone, and interacting with co-workers. This type of ADD-like behavior causes stress levels to rise, and lowers our productivity. When you read a book, all of your attention is focused on the story—the rest of the world just falls away, and you can immerse yourself in every fine detail you’re absorbing.
Try reading for 15-20 minutes before work (i.e. on your morning commute, if you take public transit), and you’ll be surprised at how much more focused you are once you get to the office.
The more you read, the more words you gain exposure to, and they’ll inevitably make their way into your everyday vocabulary. Being articulate and well-spoken is of great help in any profession, and knowing that you can speak to higher-ups with self-confidence can be an enormous boost to your self-esteem.
When you read a book, you have to remember an assortment of characters, their backgrounds, ambitions, history, and nuances, as well as the various arcs and sub-plots that weave their way through every story. That’s a fair bit to remember, but brains are marvelous things and can remember these things with relative ease.
Better Writing Skills
This goes hand-in-hand with the expansion of your vocabulary:
Exposure to published, well-written work has a noted effect on one’s own writing, as observing the cadence, fluidity, and writing styles of other authors will invariably influence your own work.
Tranquility and Relaxation
In addition to the relaxation that accompanies reading a good book, it’s possible that the subject you read about can bring about immense inner peace and tranquility. Reading spiritual texts can lower blood pressure and bring about an immense sense of calm, while reading self-help books has been shown to help people suffering from certain mood disorders and mild mental illnesses.
There’s a reading genre for every literate person on the planet, and whether your tastes lie in classical literature, poetry, fashion magazines, biographies, religious texts, young adult books, self-help guides, street lit, or romance novels, there’s something out there to capture your curiosity and imagination.
Boosts Your Sleep
Reading before bed calms your body and mind, especially after a long and stressful day. Even if the reading is just a short amount—a chapter or two—the peacefulness that reading induces can help slip you into a deep and restful sleep. The relaxation that books can bring is just one of the wonderful benefits of reading every night before bed. Step away from your computer for a little while, crack open a book, and replenish your soul for a little while.
Mental Nourishment & Stimulation
Just like any other muscle in the body, the brain requires exercise to keep it strong and healthy, so the phrase “use it or lose it” is particularly apt when it comes to your mind. Doing puzzles and playing games such as chess have also been found to be helpful with cognitive stimulation.