When was the last time you read a book, or a substantial magazine article? Do your daily reading habits center around tweets, Facebook updates, or the directions on your instant oatmeal packet?
If you’re one of countless people who don’t make a habit of reading regularly, you might be missing out. Most times a lot of people complain about not been able to sit still to read a book, maybe because you feel you don’t have the time for it, or just mabye you don’t have a flair for it.
Here are 5 major reasons why you should consider reading a book this week.
- It helps reduce stress: 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.
- It improves 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. A little knowledge about everything is of great benefit to you.
- It gives your brain a workout: People who do brain-boosting activities, such as reading and writing, tend to show fewer signs of memory loss in old age, based on a study conducted, researchers found that those who were big, lifelong readers and writers showed a lower rates of memory decline. Amazing enough, every new memory you create forges new synapses (brain Pathways) and strengthens existing ones, which assists in short-term memory recall as well as stabilizing moods. How cool is that?
It improves focus and concentration: In our internet-crazed world, attention is drawn in a million different directions at once as we multi-task 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 (via gchat, skype, etc.), keeping an eye on twitter, 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.
- Tranquility: 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 text like your Bible 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 disorder and mild mental illnesses.
Now remind me why you said you don’t like reading. You’ll be doing yourself a lot of good by picking up a book to read today.