Changing Your Reading Habits Can Transform Your Health
Do you read? I mean do you read books and if so do you read frequently, funny question I know but once you have taken the time to read the story by Michael Grothaus in FastCompany magazine below you will hopefully realize that you should to do more reading for it might actually help to transform your health:
How Changing Your Reading Habits Can Transform Your Health
Reading doesn’t just improve your knowledge, it can help fight depression, make you more confident, empathetic, and a better decision maker.
My favorite book is War and Peace.
And I know what you’re thinking: “Oh, another writer wanting people to think he’s all intellectual and highbrow.”
But it really is my favorite book, only not because it has 1,500 pages of unforgettable characters or a generational plot that is more compelling than that of any other book I’ve read. It’s because right before I started reading it, my life was in a rut. I had recently been passed over for a promotion at Apple and I had just been rejected by a graduate school I applied to. This double whammy left me doubting myself, my abilities, and my future. So when I came across the massive tome that is War and Peace, I thought, “Why not? I’m not doing anything else.”
“People who read find it easier to make decisions, plan, and prioritize.”
Two months later, I finished the book and immediately knew I had a new “favorite.” But it wasn’t my new favorite book just because it was so compelling. It was my new favorite because it changed something in me. It’s almost impossible to explain why, but after reading it I felt more confident in myself, less uncertain about my future. I became more assertive with my bosses. I got back on the horse, so to speak, and applied to three more graduate schools. I attended three interviews and got accepted to all three schools (without mentioning War and Peace at all). As weird as it sounds, reading War and Peace put me back in control of my life—and that’s why it’s my favorite book.
But according to Dr Josie Billington, deputy director of the Centre for Research into Reading at the University of Liverpool, my experience wasn’t so odd. It’s actually the norm for people who read a lot—and one of the main benefits of reading that most people don’t know about.
“Reading for pleasure can help prevent conditions such as stress, depression, and dementia.”
“Reading can offer richer, broader, and more complex models of experience, which enable people to view their own lives from a refreshed perspective and with renewed understanding,” says Billington. This renewed understanding gives readers a greater ability to cope with difficult situations by expanding their “repertoires and sense of possible avenues of action or attitude.”…