Reading is one of the greatest joys in life. There are few things better than relaxing in the sun with a paperback and a cold drink or lounging on the sofa on a rainy day with a classic novel. But reading is so much more than just entertainment. Books are powerful tools that change your character and your life for the better in so many ways.
If you’re not convinced, here are five ways that reading can make you a better person.
Reading makes you more empathetic
If you read a lot of fiction, you are spending a great deal of time in the company of the characters involved. Enjoying a novel requires you to empathize with the viewpoints of different people and understand their feelings and beliefs. It doesn’t matter that these characters are fictional; just exploring their inner lives within your own mind can make you better at building, navigating, and maintaining social relationships in the real world.
Reading boosts your cognitive abilities
As you get older, your cognitive abilities can often start to deteriorate. Many people hit a certain age and start to notice their memory isn’t what it used to be, or they have trouble concentrating on tasks. Some people try to counter this by doing Su Dokus, crosswords, or visiting puzzle websites like Pennydellpuzzles.com to keep their minds sharp. But few people realize just how vital reading is for keeping your brain in peak condition. There are several studies showing that older people who read books regularly tend to maintain their cognitive function much better and are less likely to develop conditions such as Alzheimer’s and dementia.
Reading makes you more knowledgeable
According to Google, there are approximately 130,000,000 books in the world, and this figure is growing all the time. This vast number means that there are countless books on any topic you could imagine. Reading allows you to enhance your knowledge of the world and everything in it, and there are no limits to this. Whether you are interested in military history, cinema, carpentry, or marine biology, all you need to do is find the relevant literature and start reading.
Reading improves your language skills
When you are engrossed in a book, you are constantly being presented with long words and complicated grammatical rules, even if you don’t realize it at the time. Subconsciously, all this reading is improving your language skills and making you a better communicator. Not only will this enable you to speak to others more articulately and fluently, but it can benefit you in a professional setting too. Most jobs involve a lot of writing emails and presenting in meetings, so your newfound communication skills may end up helping you progress in your career.
Reading aids your mental health
One of the greatest benefits of books is that they help you relax. Studies have shown that just thirty minutes of reading can significantly reduce stress and anxiety. And anyone who has ever settled into bed with a good book after a hard day at work will be able to testify to this.