In the days gone by of no television, no internet, no Facebook and no messaging systems, we definitely read more. We were a more active nation as well but reading a book was by far the most go-to pastime, when not out working.
Reading has so many benefits and not only for those just learning the art. Adults should be reading more. It is very easy to flick the television on or boot up the tablet and binge watch your favourite Showmax series. But, how about flicking open a crispy paged book and binge reading the entire publication?
Not only for the complete relaxation and total immersion aspect of reading, here are a few other reasons to read more.
Helps you write better
Many a professional writer will tell you that the best way to increase one’s ability as a writer is to read. Reading helps you structure sentences better, be aware of better grammar and use your punctuation in the correct manner.
No matter your vocation, you have to write or type something somewhere, in some format. Most times, it’s an email. All of us can confess to sending out an email and realising after the fact, that the structure, manner and language was mostly embarrassing. Being able to communicate effectively and clearly through writing can most definitely put you in a better light with your fellow colleagues and clients.
Helps you with words
Have you ever sat, fingers hovering above the keys, or been in mid-sentence with someone, suddenly realising you are at a loss for words? And not in the way where you are in shock, more along the lines that you just cannot think of the right words for what you are thinking.
Reading can assist you with your vocabulary. You will be surprised at how many more words you will learn through reading. You may not even be aware that your brain is storing new words, but when that moment comes and you burst out a phrase or word that you have never used before, you will be probably as gobsmacked as the receiver.
English is not an easy language, by reading you can increase your management of words, speak better and feel more confident.
Helps with your general knowledge
A person that can engage with a wide variety of people over a wide variety of interests will increase their connections, both personally and professionally.
There is always that moment, right before you get into the nitty gritty of business, where you have a conversation around personal matters. It’s part of the sales process, and essentially the human side to connecting with people. Yes, you may be there to close a deal or perhaps to sell your services, but building credibility and more importantly, building trust with that person will come through on the personal side.
By reading a myriad of books in different genres and across many varied topics, you will be able to slip neatly into any conversation. While you may not be an expert in many of the topics, you can at least add your opinion, and of course draw from what you have read on the topic.
Helps with your analytical prowess
We all need to apply ourselves in such a manner as to analyse a situation. It may be a project you are working on, a math problem or simply a mystery within a personal realm.
Analysing something doesn’t come naturally to many and is a real skill. By reading, you can enhance and nurture this skill. Think about the plot of a good novel. Who did it? Why did they do it? When will they do it? This kind of analysing helps us in everyday life too. We learn to think laterally and out of the box.
This is called critical thinking and many companies, whether hiring you for a permanent position or for outsourcing services, will look to see whether you are capable of thinking in a critical manner.
Helps lower your stress levels
Escapism is a way to reduce stress levels and what better way to do that than through a good story. As a child, our parents would tell us stories where we could imagine ourselves as the protagonist, getting up to all sorts of wonderful and magical things.
A good novel or any well-written book allows us to escape from everyday life and disappear for a few moments. This helps with stress levels and the experts say that one can reduce stress by up to almost 70% by regular reading.
On that ending note … what are you going to read today?