Reading is an activity loved by millions. Yet there are those who have yet to discover the true joys and benefits of indulging in a great book. Whichever group you're in, it never hurts to be reminded just how wonderful the written word can be! Here are some benefits reading brings:
1. Travel to exotic places. Maybe one of your life's desires is to travel more but you've struggled in making it happen.
• Not to worry - just pick up a book that tells about visiting various countries. Eat, Pray, Love is a fantastic example of how to "travel" from your armchair and fulfill your dreams.
2. Learn about obscure subjects.Although you may not plan to learn about unusual subjects, reading can actually help you discover topics that pique your interests and galvanize you to dig further into a subject.
3. Expand your mind about how others live. For many, their own culture is the extent of their sociological knowledge. However, there's a whole world of people out there who think, behave and live differently from you. Wouldn't it be fascinating and mind opening to discover how others live?
• Reading has the capacity to introduce you to people from all the cultures in the world and all walks of life. Books like Princess: A True Story of Life behind the Veil in Saudi Arabia or The Joy Luck Club do just that.
4. Re-consider an opinion. Even though you might be a person whom others see as set in your ways or strongly opinionated, one joy of reading is that you're able to really learn the underpinnings of either side of an argument.
• Exposing yourself to another perspective you haven't thoroughly pondered and learning how others present their cases is a surprising benefit reading can bring to you. Stories have a way of putting you into the shoes of another.
5. Recognize the humanity in others. Whether the stories you read are true or fictional, a special joy of reading is that you can better see and relate to the humanness of others.
• Reading about a secret mistake someone made or a tribulation that someone weathered illustrates how we're all connected in ways we may not have considered.
6. Use reading to relax. The serenity of reading may be matched only by activities like yoga or meditation. If you want to relax and experience serenity, try picking up a book.
• Although not every type of book will help with this, find those that tap into that mood for you. A favored author or a series you love just might bring you a little closer to bliss.
7. Find peace.When the world gets loud and crazy and you're not sure what to do, seek out your corner chair and grab a magazine. Whether you're looking at Architectural Digest, House Beautiful or some other easy-to-flip-through journal, seek your much needed serenity through reading.
8. Calm your mind. Life can be pretty tumultuous. Your mind's sense of calm can be disrupted. But if you use reading as an outlet, you'll be able to find your balance and return to a more serene place.
• Reading books or poems that center on nature will help you find a calm center.
9. De-focus from life's turmoil. Reading can be life's sweet escape, at least for a couple of hours. Regardless of the turmoil and chaos that may cross your path, you can re-focus your energies on reading an engaging book that's full of adventure or laughter.
Reading rejuvenates, regardless of your situation. When you open a book, you open your life to endless possibilities for joy and serenity. Life will be more satisfying than you've ever imagined.