Beyond the Page: The Benefits of Reading By

November 10,2017

The thrill of the chase, the heartwarming romance, the chance to explore new worlds: we all read books for many different reasons. Whatever captures your imagination, reading just for the pure pleasure it gives us is justification enough to curl up on the sofa with our favorite tomes. But to make you feel a little better about procrastinating all afternoon with your novel: reading is proven to be good for you.

A gym for your mind - Everyone knows how important getting regular exercise is for your physical health - well, reading is like exercise for the mind. Getting all those brain cells whirring has been found to help improve your capacity to focus and preserve memories, as well as building your concentration skills. This is thought to help with various degenerative brain diseases, such as Alzheimer’s. It has also been found to help aid recovery from depression, providing similar benefits to mindfulness activities.

Reading for relaxation - Proven to be a relaxing and calming activity, studies have shown that reading is a very effective way to beat stress and chill out. Heart rate and muscle tension begin to drop just six minutes into a reading session - performing even better than listening to music or going for a walk. Whatever genre you’re into, reading provides an escape from everyday stresses and worries - something which is really important for your overall health and wellbeing. This is why it’s a particularly good activity just before bed. Getting into a routine of reading a few chapters with the lights down when you get into bed helps you to wind down and sleep better.

Seeking new knowledge - It might seem obvious, but reading is invaluable when it comes to broadening your knowledge base, building up your vocabulary, and developing analytical skills. Whether it’s a Victorian mystery novel, a space romance, or a post-apocalyptic thriller, you’re assimilating new information about all kinds of things into your internal database, and giving your problem-solving skills a workout. It also introduces new words and styles of speech and writing - having a good vocabulary can help boost confidence in social situations as you feel more articulate and comfortable in what you’re saying.

Settling down with a book really is good for you - even beyond the enjoyment of the plot and the characters; so if you’re in need of a bit of relaxation and a chance to disconnect from your worries, get reading.