Read Any Good Books Lately?
You can find magic wherever you look. Sit back and relax, all you need is a book. – Dr Seuss
Do we derive any benefit from reading books beyond putting a pause on our reality for a moment and transporting ourselves to a different time or place? Absolutely. Research is growing daily that reading literally changes your mind.
Benefits of reading:
- Strengthens the brain – The brain, like other parts of the body, needs exercise. Through reading, connections in the brain are improved and strengthened. As you continue to read, those networks of connections continue to get stronger.
- May help fight Alzheimer’s Disease – Engaging your brain in stimulating activity such as reading, chess, or puzzles could result in 2.5 times less likelihood of developing Alzheimer’s.
- Can make you more empathetic – Reading can help us understand other people’s backgrounds, thoughts, and ways of life that differ from our own. Literary fiction in particular can help us achieve this more so than non-fiction.
- Can reduce stress – A 2009 study found that 30 minutes of reading lowered blood pressure, heart rate, and feelings of distress as effectively as yoga and humor.
- Improve your vocabulary – Being able to articulate your thoughts is helpful in any profession, relationship, or circumstance. Reading increases your exposure to words that inevitably make their way into your vocabulary.
- Improves attention and focus – In a world of constant multi-tasking that includes checking email, checking various social networks, interacting with co-workers while attempting to complete a task on time, all culminates to create more stress. Reading allows your mind, and trains your mind, to focus on one thing – the story.
- May help you live longer – A study published in 2017 followed a group of 3635 participants and found after 12 years that those who read books survived about 2 years longer than those who either did not read or read magazines or other forms of media.
The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you will go. – Dr Seuss