People have been writing books for centuries someone’s writing a book right now, and books will be written for a long time to come.
The question is, when was the last time you read a book? While there’s no doubt that reading is a priceless activity, the habit of reading books has been on a decline.
Most people claim they don’t have the time to read, yet the average person watches TV for more than two hours a day.
Reading is a workout for your mind - and it’s just as important as physical exercise. So here are 14 reasons why you should read more!
1. Acquire Knowledge
This is the most obvious and important benefit of reading. Humans are the only species on Earth that can transmit information and knowledge over a distance and over several generations.
Written language separates us from all other species. It enables us to transfer knowledge rapidly, and allows us to develop faster.
Everything you read fills your mind with new bits of information, and the more knowledge you have, the better-equipped you are - and the more able you become to tackle challenges.
Even if you were to lose everything you physically possess, no one can ever take away your knowledge.
2. Improve Memory
Reading books offers the opportunity to stop and take a moment to rethink or reflect on the content.
When you read a book, you have to remember an assortment of characters, their backgrounds, ambitions, histories, and nuances, as well as the various arcs and subplots that weave their way through the story.
What’s more, with every new memory you create, you create new pathways in your brain, and this strengthens the existing ones.
Furthermore, staying mentally stimulated by reading regularly, can slow the progress or possibly even prevent Alzheimer’s or Dementia.
3. Strengthen Critical And Analytical Skills
Have you ever read an amazing mystery novel, and solved the mystery yourself - before finishing the book?
If so, you were able to put your critical thinking skills to work, by taking note of all the details provided, and sorting them out.
That same ability to analyze details comes in handy - even in real life! In fact, critical thinking skills are essential.
Being able to solve problems, given just certain elements, are a part of daily life – from finishing a project for work to figuring out how to navigate difficult relationships.
4. Advance Your Career
The more you read, the more words you are exposed to. These words will inevitably make their way into your everyday vocabulary and being articulate and well-spoken earns you a bonus point in many professions.
The ability to confidently communicate with your employers and peers can be an enormous boost to your self-esteem, and it will also help you advance the career ladder.
Studies have shown that those who are well-read, well-spoken, and knowledgeable on a variety of topics, tend to get promotions more quickly and more often compared to those with smaller vocabularies and lack of awareness of literature, scientific breakthroughs, and global events.
5. Improve Writing Skills
In addition to expanding your vocabulary, exposure to published, well-written work has a positive effect on your own writing as well.
Many successful authors gained their expertise by reading the works of others.
Observing the various styles of other authors, journalists, poets, and writers will eventually be reflected in your own writing style.
So, if you want to become a better writer, start by learning from previous masters!
6. Improve Focus And Concentration
In these modern days, our attention is constantly drawn in different directions throughout the day.
Studies have shown that in a single 5-minute span, the average person will divide their time between working on a task, checking email, keeping an eye on social media, monitoring their smartphone, and chatting with a couple of people (either online or in-person).
Of course, this type of distracted behavior lowers productivity. When you read a book, all of your attention is focused on what you’re reading causing the rest of the world to fade away as you immerse yourself in the details.
Reading at least 20 minutes a day will improve your concentration, and you’ll be amazed at how much more focused you’ll be.
7. Boost Inspiration And Motivation
Reading inspirational books can contribute to your growth and development.
With the endless amount of perspectives and lives you can read about, books can give you an opportunity to have experiences that you haven’t had the chance to, and still allow you to learn the life skills they entail.
Essentially, reading is the seed of inspiration. The words plant the ideas in your brain, and those ideas flourish from there.
8. Learn At Your Own Pace
Another benefit of reading a book is that you learn at your own pace. Since you have the book all the time, you can always go back to a section you feel you don’t understand.
You can read a chapter as many times as you wish, without worrying that you’ll miss out on a section.
If it’s a self-help book, you can tackle one issue at a time. Once you handle one problem, then you can move to the next issue whenever you feel you’re ready.
Everything is done at your own pace, and most importantly, your mind is free to interpret things the way you feel.
9. Stimulate Imagination
You are limited only by what you can imagine. The worlds described in books, as well as other people’s views and opinions, will help you expand your understanding of what is possible.
By reading a written description of an event or a place, your mind is responsible for creating that image in your head - instead of having the image placed in front of you when you watch TV.
You connect all these creations and make changes while you keep reading - all the while expanding your worldview.
When you explore a new literary world, this opens doors for new ideas, subjects, and situations that can get you thinking about trying new experiences.
10. Improve Conversation Skills
Because reading increases your vocabulary and your knowledge of how to correctly use new words, it helps you better articulate what you want to say.
The knowledge you gain from reading also gives you more to talk about with others. You’ll be able to hold your own and add to the conversation instead of having to make excuses and leave.
You will be able to engage a wider variety of people, and in turn improve your knowledge and conversation skills.
Ultimately, this will make you a much more interesting and refreshing person to be around.
11. Become More Empathetic
According to studies, losing yourself in books, especially fiction, may increase your empathy.
As you let go of the emotional and mental chatter found in the real world, you enjoy deep reading that allows you to feel what the characters in a story feel.
And this in turn makes you more empathetic to people in real life. You become more aware and alert to the lives of others.
12. Sleep Better
Poor sleep leads to low productivity. This is why so many experts recommend that you establish a regular de-stressing routine before you go to sleep.
This will help calm your mind, and therefore help you sleep better. Reading a book is one of the best ways to calm yourself before going to bed.
Even if it’s just for ten minutes, reading can help you push whatever was keeping you awake out of your mind.
So while in bed, instead of watching television or spending time on your smartphone, grab a book and read.
13. Source Of Companionship
During your life, you will experience numerous transitions. Changing schools, jobs, or cities may require you to replace old relationships with new ones and sometimes, these adjustments are harder or take longer than expected.
Reading can help reduce feelings of alienation and loneliness. Whether it’s through the comfort of a favorite book, or through an emotional connection to relatable characters books provide a stable source of companionship especially during times when you feel the only person you can count on is yourself.
14. Increase Your Lifespan
Researchers have found that adults who read at least three and a half hours a week, can expect to have a longer lifespan than those who do not read books.
This is because reading can increase connectivity between brain cells, which can lower the risk of neurodegenerative diseases that can shorten a lifespan.
Developing a daily reading habit can be super beneficial for you in fact, reading makes you more intelligent!
Research shows that reading not only helps with fluid intelligence but with reading comprehension and emotional intelligence as well and as a result, you make smarter decisions about yourself and those around you.
Whether you choose to nourish your inner escapist or feed your brain with new knowledge, remember to crack open a book and replenish your soul regularly.
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