TOP TEN AMAZING BENEFITS OF READING

Are you one of those people who have relegated reading only to exam season, and even so, do it so grudgingly you don’t derive any pleasure from it at all? Well after you go through this article, I presume it would reshape your view of reading and help transform it from that mundane and lackluster activity, to an enjoyable hobby. And if perhaps you are already an ardent book reader, here are reasons you shouldn’t stop.

  1. LONGEVITY: In 2016, when researchers at the Yale School of Public Health dug into 12 years of HRS data about the reading habits and health of more than 3,600 men and women over the age of 50, a hopeful pattern emerged: People who read books—fiction or nonfiction, poetry or prose—for as little as 30 minutes a day over several years were living an average of two years longer than people who didn’t read anything at all. Other still, book readers who reported more than three hours of reading each week were 23 percent less likely to die between 2001 and 2012 than their peers who read only newspapers or magazines. You may already be familiar with recent findings that suggest children as young as six months who read books with their parents several times a week show stronger literacy skills four years later, score higher on intelligence tests, and land better jobs than non-readers. But recent research argues that reading may be just as important in adulthood. When practiced over a lifetime, reading and language- acquisition skills can support healthy brain functioning in big ways. Studies have also shown that by constantly stimulating your mind, you slow the progress of mental diseases and according to researchers in Spain, having a large vocabulary reduced the propensity for occurrence of a mental decline. Keeping your brain active and engaged prevents it from losing its power by sharpening its logical ability.
  2. BOOST BRAIN POWER/ IMPROVE MEMORY: 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 sub-plots that weave their way through every story. Amazingly enough, every new memory you create forges new synapses (brain pathways) and strengthens existing ones, which assists in short-term memory recall.
  3. IMPROVES EMPATHY/ EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE: Reading books, especially fiction, has been shown to increase empathy and emotional intelligence. One 2013 study found that participants who read just the first part or chapter of a story showed a noticeable increase in empathy one week later, while news readers showed a decrease. These findings may sound trivial, but they’re not; developing social tools such as empathy and emotional intelligence can lead to more (and more positive) human interaction, which in turn can lower stress levels—both of which are proved to help you live longer and healthier.
  4. VOCABULARY: 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 is bonus point in many professions. Knowing that you communicate to your employers and your peer with confidence can be an enormous boost to your self-esteem and can aid you as 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 than those with smaller vocabularies and lack of awareness of literature, scientific breakthroughs and global events.
  5. SHARPENING WRITING SKILL: Sharpens writing skills – This goes hand-in-hand with the expansion of your vocabulary: exposure to published, well-written work has a positive effect on one’s own writing. Observing the various styles of other authors, journalists, poets and writers will eventually be reflected in your own writing style. This is the same way for many artists – as musicians influence one another and painters use techniques established by previous masters, so do writers learn how to craft prose, poetry and news by reading the works of others.
  6. BOOST CONCENTRATION – In our internet-crazed world, attention is drawn in a million different directions at once as we attempt to juggle several tasks at once. Studies have shown that in a single 5-minute span, the average person will divide their time between working on a task, checking email, chatting with a couple of people (via online chat and/or in person), keeping an eye on social media and monitoring their Smartphone. This type of behavior in which we are constantly distracted causes stress levels to rise and lowers our productivity. While reading a book, however, all of your attention is focused on the story—causing the rest of the world to fall away as you immerse yourself in every fine detail seen from the point of view of another. Try reading for 15-20 minutes before work and you’ll be surprised at how much more focused you are once you get to the office. The amazing thing about reading is that there is always a genre that fits your reading, be it classical literature, poetry, fashion magazines, biographies, religious texts, young adult books, and self-help guides, street lit or romance novels, there’s something out there to capture your curiosity and imagination.
  7. FUEL YOUR CREATIVITY: The story of a book will absorb your mind so let your imagination fly. While you are reading, you are building images, faces, places, colors, settings and stimulating your creative juices. Your connecting all these creations and events helps broaden your worldview. Allowing your mind to explore a new literary world opens the door of new ideas, subjects and situations that can get you thinking on trying new experiences. Click here to discover other ways!
  8. REDUCES STRESS: No matter how much stress you are going through at work, in your personal life or anywhere else, reading a good story can help you take your mind off these difficult situations. A nice novel can help distract you, while an interesting article can slip your mind out of your problems of that present moment. It can also allow you to relax and release any tension, especially if you’re reading a subject you are personally interested in.
  9. DEVELOPMENT OF LEADERSHIP SKILLS: It is often said that, “If you don’t read, you can’t lead.” Think of this, how would you possibly lead a group of people when you are totally blank and bereft of knowledge and ideas? It is practically impossible! Reading gives you the opportunity to feed your mind, thereby making of you a better leader. It also sharpens your critical and analytical thinking skills, thereby making you a better problem solver.
  10. MAKES YOU FUN TO BE WITH: Nobody wants to be around someone who is boring and unenthusiastic. This is a common truth and I bet you can also agree with me. It’s a lot more exciting to be around someone who has few jokes, riddles and stories in his/her arsenal. Simply put: Someone who is versatile, and that is what reading makes you. It was said of erstwhile U.S president Theodore Roosevelt that he usually read about subjects that would be of interest to his guest before meeting them in person. So, when he eventually did meet them, he had quite a number of interesting things to discuss with them.

 

solomon Author

I’m Solomon Onu Idenyi: a writer and public speaker. I’m really glad you came around. I sincerely hope you do come around often—I wouldn’t be here not for you! WWW.solowrites.com is website that not only promotes education and innovation but also showcases young and bustling entrepreneurs and innovators across Africa. We would love to know your ventures and advertise for you! So go ahead and contact us today!

Comments

    khady

    (September 29, 2017 - 10:36 pm)

    Amazing facts ……..i never knew reading could be of immerse benefit

      solomon

      (October 3, 2017 - 2:11 pm)

      It is dear….I hope this will encourage many to embrace a reading culture.

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