Posted by: bluesyemre | May 27, 2021

Are you a #bookworm? by Shalani Dilinika Jayamanne

Like one’s body needs exercise to stay fit, our thinking faculty, the brain, needs reading. Hence, reading is an exercise to the brain as well as a good habit that makes people more intelligent and broad minded. Therefore, the benefits one can obtain by reading books are manifold and immeasurable.  However, due to the advancement of information and communication technology, we can see that people opt to spend their free time on social media such as Youtube, Facebook and etc. rather than reading books. According to Pew Research centre (2019),  approximately 27%of U.S adults haven’t read a book in whole or in part in the past year, whether in print, electronic or audio form. In support of that Global Social Media Stats(2021) highlights, a typical user spends an average of close to 2½ hours using social media each day. This tantamounts to a sharp decline in the reading habits of people throughout the world. 

What science says,

In scientific view, reading can provide myriad of advantages for people enabling them to enhance their physical and mental salubrity. In this context, Bavishi, Martin D.Slade, and Becca R.Levy (2016) asserted that reading can make people live longer than non-readers. Accordingly, they studied 3635 individuals who were aged  50 years  or more and concluded in findings that people who read for up to 3.5 hours a week lived almost two years longer than non-readers. 

Further, reading is proven to be one of the best medicines to relieve stress because of its ability to decrease high blood pressure, tension, and lower heart rate. In 2009, a study initiated by the University of Sussex revealed that reading can reduce stress by up to 68% and it works better and faster than the other recreational methods, such as listening to music or drinking a hot cup of tea. Therefore reading is significantly important for people to stay healthy, strong, and stress-free.

Why we should read?

Since reading can provide a vast array of benefits, the benefits of reading ramnificate over many spectrums of our life as described below:

  1.  Reading Boosts your memory

When you are reading a book, you have to remember the story, characters, and special events that are in the content. Also, you have to map the connection between characters and incidents to get the meaning. Hence, this activity can be identified as a memory stimulating task that enhances the capacity of our sensory basis. According to a study conducted by Northcentral University, reading has led to a slow down in cognitive decline associated with the old aged people who engaged in reading throughout their lifetimes. Hence, reading a few pages a day is essential to maintain brain health and to stay focused.

  1. Enhance Imagination

Books have a magical power that stimulates the imagination. When we are reading a book we meet with different characters from different walks of life all over the world. For instance, when someone reads “The Mother” written by Maxim Gorki, the reader’s imagination automatically travels to Russia and the person is exposed to the hardships that the characters faced in the unfolding story. This imagination can help  people travel around the world without moving them over geographical boundaries. 

This phenomenon provides a better understanding of people and makes the reader more empathetic or imaginative. For instance, “The Diary of a Young Girl” was the  Autobiography of Anne Frank, who was in hiding for two years with her family due to the Hitler’s treatment of Jews. The story delivers a strong message to readers about humanity and discrimination against races. In this context,  The guardian highlights, “Just because people may be a different religion or race doesn’t mean that they should be treated differently”. 

  1. Provide an entertainment    

People do a lot of activities to pursue happiness and recreation. It is a well known fact  that nowadays people follow social media, surf the internet, play games etc. to spend their spare time. This sedentary lifestyle has been causing a multitude of repercussions on people such as hypertension and anxiety. In this regard, reading is proven to be the best option that provides entertainment as well as extensive health benefits. Since reading has been a productive hobby for people for ages, it is proven to be more effective and informative. To exemplify, we can see that children’s books, namely “Famous Five”, “Harry Potter”, “ Alice in the wonderland”, “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” etc. are given a scintillating reading experience that carries a life-long entertainment for children. As an example, when a child reads “Harry Potter”, it imagines a wizardry world, magical spells, and so much fun while reading the book. As a result of that, the characters the child meets in a particular book becomes the child’s heroes. This helps optimistically improve a child’s creativity, imagination, brain functionality, and mood. Other than that, books provide entertainment for people irrespective of their ages. There are a wide variety of book genres such as thriller stories, adventures, romance, horror, and other genres that can provide the ultimate entertainment for people.

  1. Reading can make up  your day

Can you imagine the freshness of a bunch of fresh flowers? The sound of a waterfall? As you feel the freshness of a flower, you can sense the same for a good book. It can really elevate your day optimistically to an unimaginable height and  accelerate the concentration ability  and the energy level. You can read a book when you are commuting to work or in a long queue wasting your time. In such situations,  a newspaper, a pocketbook, or a piece of paper may be a good source of reading that would be beneficial for repelling the monotony of the daily vicious cycle. But nowadays people tend to check their social media screens and surf the internet instead of reading  once they get free time.

Summary

In summary, it can be highly recommended that there is a plethora of advantages that are linked to the habit of reading. Sir Francis Bacon once said “Reading Maketh a Full Man”. Hence, reading is an essential activity that stimulates one’s brain, imagination, and creativity in numerous ways.

Although people living in the contemporary world distance themselves from the practice of reading due to their sedentary lifestyle, it really pays dividends to the individuals if allocate a few minutes are allocated in a day to read something interesting, which is proven to be one of the ingredients for one to become a successful person.

https://shalanij.wordpress.com/2021/05/26/are-you-a-bookworm/


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