There are so many wonderful reasons to read a book. The experience of reading a story is a lot different than watching it performed by actors on TV or on the big screen. I used to read all the time when I was younger but as I’ve gotten older I’ve had less and less time. I recently started making more of an effort to read before bed and I realized how much I truly missed relaxing with a good book. If it’s been a while since you settled into a comfy chair or sprawled out on your bed and lost yourself in a riveting story, check out these reasons to read a book, then grab one of your favorites and curl up with a hot cup of tea or cocoa!
1 Stimulates Imagination
I love watching TV and movies just as much as everyone else, but one of the best reasons to read a book is that you use your own imagination to picture the characters and their surroundings. You have the basic ideas thanks to the writer’s character descriptions, but your own thoughts and perceptions create the environment and key players. No matter how young or old you are, it is always important to have an active imagination and reading an interesting book is a sure way to stimulate your mind!
2 Provides an Escape
If you are having a hard day or feeling down and depressed, losing yourself in a book is a wonderful way to take your mind off of your troubles for a little while. It is sometimes the only way I can relax. I am able to still actively think about all the things that are bothering me while I’m watching TV, but when I read a book I find myself totally absorbed in it and my mind is clear of everything except the story I am reading.
I know that the Internet makes finding information instantly accessible, but I have to say the things I have learned through the context of reading a book have stuck with me for years, unlike the information that I frantically look up on Wikipedia whenever I need a fast fact. While I will never stop looking up info online, I know that, at least for myself, I will retain information longer if I read it within a memorable story.
4 Better Vocabulary
Avid readers tend to have a much larger vocabulary than those who rarely read. I come from a family of readers and let me tell you, when game night includes Scrabble, we will battle to the death! A large vocabulary is helpful in many aspects (beyond Scrabble and crosswords). If you are a writer or a public speaker, your vocabulary is extremely important. I know that I have picked up a great many words from reading, regardless of the genre of the book. You are bound to see words you haven’t seen before, but the context of the word within the sentence helps you understand the meaning of it, and you will eventually find yourself using it in your everyday conversations.
5 Books Are Often Better than Movies Based on Them
There are absolutely exceptions to this, but the majority of books are better than the movies based on them because the move only has 2, occasionally 3 hours to tell the entire story. A book is much longer and can go into far more detail and development about situations and characters' backgrounds. I usually feel that I relate much more to the characters in books because I know more information about them and am told about their inner thoughts, whereas in most movies you are only aware of what they are saying out loud, not what they are thinking.
You can read virtually anywhere without disturbing those around you. You can read in bed without keeping your sweetie awake, you can read on public transportation without bothering the people sitting near you. Reading is a great way to pass the time without being an annoyance to anyone else. My niece ALWAYS brings a book with her and when she gets bored with the older folks' discussions or doesn’t want to participate in whatever is going on, she just pulls out her book and reads. It keeps her occupied, I have never heard her ask her parents to give her something to do, she just sits there quietly, absorbed in her book.
7 It Encourages Others
Whether you are someone’s mother, sister, aunt, cousin, friend or mentor, someone is paying attention to everything you do. If they see you reading, it will encourage them to do the same. Reading can open up a whole new world, and many kids and young adults aren’t encouraged to read for pleasure and think reading is only for homework purposes and is something they’re “forced” to do. Showing them that reading can be enjoyable and fun might get them to turn off the TV and read a little more.
Reading is a form of entertainment that really is often overlooked. I am by no means advocating doing away with TV or movies; I just think everyone should give books more attention and rejuvenate their imagination. There are still many many people in the world who do not have the ability to read. Don’t take your gift of literacy for granted. What do you believe are the best reasons to pick up a good book?