When was the last time you picked up a book? Not a book for work or a textbook for a class. And reading daily Tweets and the Daily Skimm in your inbox on the train in the morning does not count. I truly believe that reading regularly makes you a better person. And I’m not the only one who thinks so. Science agrees. With all the new technologies out there, it’s crazy to think that reading is one of the best things you can do for yourself.
Why Reading Is One Of The Best Things You Can Do For Yourself
- It reduces stress. Reading for just six minutes can reduce your stress by one-third. A study even found that when people read for six minutes, they had a reduced heart rate and relaxed muscle tension. I think we can all benefit from reading for a bit after work.
- Reading makes you a better writer. When you’re reading, you’re absorbing more than just a great storyline. You’re taking in sentence structure and new vocabulary and the importance of a good narrative. As soon as I finish a book I feel more inspired to write.
- It helps with anxiety. Reading helps keep you grounded. Bibliotherapy said that if you can’t work through your own problems, turning to a book can help you navigate through someone else’s issues and bring new clarity to a situation.
- It improves your memory. Which everyone today needs – we can thank our smartphones for that. The more connected you are to your cell phone, the more it affects your attention span and memory. But when you read, you are essentially exercising your brain and it can help increase memory.
- Improved focus and concentration. Again with your cell phone, it’s hard to focus on one task. When you’re out to dinner or watching a movie, it’s hard to not to reach for your cell phone. Getting lost in a good book helps keep your mind on one task at a time.
- It can put you to bed. Having a ritual like reading before bed can help you fall asleep. It signals to your body that it’s time to wind down and is much better for you than watching TV or scrolling through Instagram.
- Reading sharpens your social skills. You’d think being lost in a book is an escape from being with other people, but reading actually helps you socialize. There was a study published that found reading can help you be more understanding towards other people’s beliefs, thoughts and values.
Not sure what to read first? Check out some of my recommendations here.
What’s on your reading list?