Did you know that a lot of adults choose not to read books once they are finished with formal schooling? That is quite a tragedy because there are many reasons why reading is good for you.
For starters, it is a relaxing pastime but reading can also teach you valuable skills and coping mechanisms for dealing with life’s stresses and strains.
Whether you are a self-help junkie, a do-it-yourself wannabe, or your average fan of action and mystery, reading is good for you because it enables you to access a wealth of knowledge. And many times, that knowledge is nearly impossible to replicate in any other formats or mediums.
In this article, we review 10 reasons why reading is good for you. If you haven’t picked up a book in a while, hopefully, these 10 reasons will have you reaching for one in the near future.
Not only will you become further educated and more fulfilled, but there are many other reasons why reading is good for you. Reading helps stimulate your brain and keeps your mental acumen at peak performance.
1. Reading Is Good For You Because It Promotes Brain Activity
Some of you might think this isn’t really a benefit. After all, isn’t your brain active all of the time? In a way, yes. However, reading is good for you because it stimulates your brain in an active way, rather than a passive.
Throughout your normal day, your brain is passively aware of what you are doing. Often, you are able to accomplish most tasks without requiring too much brain power or hard thought going into it.
However, when you interact with something novel or unusual to your brain, such as a science-fiction story or a how-to book on a new subject, new pathways are activated that weren’t previously there. You begin to conceptualize. Or at least attempt to conceptualize the theories that you aren’t normally familiar with.
Naturally, this provides many benefits to you. These include helping you to learn new skills and even preparing you to undertake other tasks in the future.
2. Your Memory Improves When You Read
Not only does reading help you activate areas of your brain and stimulate new ways of thinking. Reading is also good for you because it improves your ability to retain information and recall it later.
The benefits of an improved memory are quite apparent and far-reaching. From work to your personal life, the ability to remember details and recall things with clarity will enable you to perform at a higher level than your peers.
3. Reading Helps To Build Your Knowledge Base
Taking a class is expensive, and enrolling in a full program is even more so. If you need to learn something but you’re on a budget, look no further than reading. Books of all kinds, scientific, fiction, non-fiction, etc. can help you teach yourself pretty much any skill you might need.
Whether you want to learn a new language or begin a new trade, there’s a book out there ready to help you do it.
And even if you have the money for a course or a class, you might want to test it first by reading about the subject to gauge your interest. If you are struggling to get through a book on your new interest, it might be a clue that it isn’t for you. As a bonus, you didn’t have to waste any money to discover that.
Furthermore, you might learn more effectively by reading and teaching yourself than listening to someone else teach you.
4. Reading Builds Logical Reasoning Skills
What happens when you have to puzzle something out in a murder mystery you are reading or when you have to wrap your head around a new concept you are learning? Ultimately, you are developing skills outside of those specific areas that will help you throughout your life.
Essentially, you are teaching your brain to be agile and responsive when you are reading. It is one of the main reasons why reading is good for you. Learning, like anything else, is a skill, and it is one that gets better with practice.
The more time you spend learning new things, the better you become at learning itself.
You might not consider how your ability to learn begins to decrease after you leave formal education. That is because you aren’t required to do so actively. Interestingly, the number of adults who read regularly often declines significantly after their education is complete.
So, make a conscious effort to continue reading even after you have completed your formal education. When doing so, you are improving your analytical and logical reasoning skills.
5. Expand Your Vocabulary By Reading More
Have you ever wondered how some people have such a broad vocabulary?
There’s one sure way to gain that kind of knowledge and it involves reading books, preferably on many different subjects.
Modern technology is making vocabulary expansion even easier with gadgets like the Kindle and the iPad. They both have built-in features that define words for you on the fly as you encounter them in the text.
The more you read and the more you encounter words in different scenarios, the broader your vocabulary will become. Furthermore, the deeper your understanding of the written language.
At first, it may mean a few checks the dictionary, but your language skills will skyrocket quickly and you’ll soon find yourself using newly learnt words in your everyday conversations.
6. Reading Helps To Reduces Stress And Relax
You might think that your reader friends are among some of the most intelligent and well-rounded people out there.
That could be the case, or they could just really love reading.
Why? Because, like most hobbies, it is relaxing and a great reliever of stress for many people out there.
People who read don’t always do it to learn something or advance themselves in some way. They often read because they enjoy it. It’s fun, relaxing, and offers them an escape from the everyday routines.
Reading engages your mind, but it also calms down your heart rate as well as your body in general. Quite often, you might even fall asleep from reading. Not because the story is boring, but because you are relaxed in both mind and body.
Additionally, the best thing about using reading as a way to help reduce your stress is that it can involve almost any genre. You don’t have to read fiction to find reading enjoyable, nor do you have to learn a new skill from an academic book.
It can be as simple as you taking some time away from the madness of your day-to-day life just for yourself.
7. Reading Improves Focus
One of the biggest challenges you might face when getting started with reading is that it can be difficult to focus on one thing for a long period of time.
This is also common with individuals trying to learn in general, not just with reading.
Again, reading and learning are skills that improve with practice. Similar to how a new runner wouldn’t tackle a marathon right away, a reader should also be cautious about biting off too much in the beginning.
Sustainability and persistence are key if concentration is difficult for you. Most experts advise that people start slowly and gradually build up their ability to read for long periods of time.
In addition to building your ability to focus on reading, you will also be able to use this exercise to improve your focus in other areas of your life. Improving your focus not only increase your output, but it also makes you more efficient at completing the task at hand.
8. Your Writing Improves When You Read More
The obvious advice, if you struggle with writing, is to practice more. However, another way to gain some passive knowledge of the craft and still improve your own abilities is to read the writing of others.
Reading is good for you because it helps you become a better writer. When you read the work of others, regardless of the style, you have first-hand knowledge of what makes sense to you and what doesn’t. You can use this knowledge to improve your own writing.
Regardless of the scenarios you find yourself in, business or personal, you need to be able to communicate clearly and effectively. Knowing how to do that only comes from exposure to good and bad writing.
There’s a reason why people like Warren Buffett and Bill Gates read every day and suggest that others should too. This is evident each time you see them speak or read some of their writing.
The clarity with which they are able to speak and write on topics so far outside of their known expertise is a testament to both the power of effective communication and their breadth of knowledge from reading.
9. Reading Is One Of The Oldest And Most Effective Forms Of Entertainment
Reading is good for you because it is entertaining. In addition to all of the above-listed benefits, you will gain enjoyment from the act of reading and engaging with a good story.
There’s a reason that almost every movie and television show out there is based upon a book. That’s because, arguably, there isn’t a medium capable of capturing you and embracing you quite like a book.
No matter how you approach reading, whether as a hobby or as an active part of self-improvement, you will quickly realize that reading in itself is a fun activity to take part in.
10. Reading Exposes You To New Ways Of Thinking And Living
Reading often takes you somewhere you have never been before. Or describes a time and place to you that cannot exist again.
Whether you delve into history, fantasy, or science fiction, a common theme is apparent across all genres of reading. One which involves removing you from your current surroundings and enables you to live vicariously through the words you are reading.
Reading enables you to engage with the world around you on a deeper and more detailed level. Furthermore, it reveals things about both you and different societies of the world that you were previously unaware of.
How you interact with and respond to information in a book helps to inform your worldview. It also shapes how you will interpret and consider circumstances with which you are yet to experience.
The realization that there are 86,400 seconds each day. What are you doing today, so that tomorrow you are a step closer to where you want to be? If not now, then when?
eightysixfourhundred, make them count