5 Benefits of Reading Every Day
August 26, 2021
Reading benefits your mental and physical health in a variety of ways, with the perks lasting a lifetime. Whether you’re looking to decrease stress or increase your vocabulary, you can easily order books online and reap the rewards of reading.
The benefits of reading are endless, but here are 5 simple reasons to start incorporating it into your daily or nightly schedule. This blog post will cover how reading can increase empathy, reduce stress, strengthen your mind, help you bond with your family, and increase your knowledge.
It Improves (Emotional) Intelligence
Research shows that reading literary fiction can enhance people’s ability to empathize with others and understand different lifestyles. This is because literary fiction explores the thoughts and inner lives of characters and stories that we might not have ever been exposed to before. When characters are fully formed and empathetic, or the worlds explored in a book are vivid and captivating, we can put ourselves in the shoes of those living through the story.
This is related to a theory called the “theory of mind,” which is an important social skill. It involves being able to think about the wellness of others, such as their emotions and values. This can help us understand why some people react differently to different situations and why others might have different opinions than us, which in turn increases empathy and our emotional intelligence. But of course, we can never truly know what other people are thinking, which is why it’s called “theory” of mind.
It Reduces Stress and Improves Mood
When we’re stressed, our first instinct might be to watch a lot of TV, do some yoga, or maybe pour ourselves a glass of wine. But 30 minutes of reading can actually lower blood pressure, heart rate, and feelings of distress just as effectively as yoga or laughing!
30 minutes of reading can easily be incorporated into your nightly bedtime routine, helping you wind down after a stressful day. To make the activity even cozier, make sure you get into your comfiest clothes, grab a blanket and some herbal tea, and adjust your reading lamp, so you’re not straining your eyes.
Reading before bed is also a great way to avoid phone screens or TV screens, as the light can have a negative impact on your sleep. Reading, on the other hand, can help you fall asleep faster, improving your health overall.
It’s Like Hitting the Gym… For Your Brain
You’ve probably heard that doing puzzles like crosswords or sudoku can help strengthen your mind. Well, a 2013 study showed that reading does as well!
Reading fiction with a tension-building plot and strong narrative actually changes and strengthens the pathways in our brain that are associated with language and movement. This means that reading could boost neural function, strengthening the pathways in our brain. And what’s even more fascinating, fellow book lovers, is that this effect continues even hours after we’ve stopped reading!
It Builds Connection with Loved Ones
Reading can be a great way to spend time with your family. Not only can the activity itself be relaxing, it also opens up doors for discussion and sharing mutual interests if you happen to be reading the same book.
If you have young children, making story time interactive is a great way to bond with them and also fosters a love of reading. Reading out loud, turning the story into a play, or incorporating music are all fun ways to engage with your family. Studies also show that physical books, compared to e-readers or tablets, help spark a deeper connection between caretakers and children.
Reading time as family time doesn’t just relate to small kids. If you have older children, a partner, or live with your parents, reading separate books while sitting in the same room can still promote connection and a sense of calm.
It Improves Overall Intelligence
The more you read, the more you learn! Not only do you gain important information that could help you face future challenges, but you’re gaining relatable insight into the lives and experiences of others. Whether you enjoy reading historical fiction, literary fiction, romance, or YA, there is usually a hint of truth in all these genres that can aid in better understanding the world around you.
Reading also helps increase your vocabulary, which in turn means you can gain a better grasp of your language. This helps with improving communication skills and can benefit your relationships as well as your career. Your self-esteem will subsequently improve since you’ll feel more confident communicating your needs and thoughts.
The Benefits are Endless!
There you have it, bookworms! While there are numerous benefits to reading, the above are just a few reasons why you should incorporate it into your daily and nightly schedule.
At Book Outlet, we truly believe that reading is a gift that can add richness to your life as well as those around you! If you’re someone who has struggled in the past to incorporate reading into your routine, take a peek at some of our other blogs as a start to get motivated. You can also try experimenting with different subjects, authors, or mediums – like graphic novels!
Explore our expansive collection of great books and get inspired!