The benefits of reading (and a challenge for 2018).

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“Read more” is a worthy goal that can surely be found in plenty of resolutions lists.

Reading is one of those goals that usually appears on New Year’s resolutions lists. Let’s take advantage of the fact that at the beginning of the year we feel motivated and use this post to talk a little about reading and its benefits.

Reading has a lot to offer. There are so many books of very diverse themes and so many different styles of writing, that generalizations like “reading is boring” simply don’t cut it. If you’re one of those people, maybe it’s just that you haven’t found your favorite genre or author.

In addition to the obvious benefits that reading has (like to entertain or inform), the habit of reading has some psychological benefits that I’d like to point out:

Psychological benefits of reading:

1) Reading can reduce anxiety.

When we read something that really interests us, we delve into the words and the images they evoke. Therefore, we give our mind a rest from our worries, stress and obsessive thoughts.

2) Reading stimulates our creativity.

Reading is more than a distraction though. It can also be a means to stimulate our creativity and imagination. Exploring our creative side, in turn, also has psychological benefits such as knowing and dealing with our emotions.

3) Reading promotes empathy.

At the end of the day, reading is a way of getting to know other’s ideas, cultures and worlds. There are several studies that show that reading (especially fiction) can make us more understanding towards others. Learning about the worlds of others can help reduce our own prejudices. To me, that’s a great benefit.

Another way to look at this appears in an article published by Verne:

(Reading) can lead a statement we do not question (“this is how it’s done”) to become an explicit observation (“this is how we do it”), susceptible to rethink (“could we do it in a different way?”).

Reading has many more benefits, but I think these are the most remarkable. However, in favour of truth, sometimes it’s difficult to find the time and space to read.

That’s why, inspired by challenges from many other websites, I’ve created a reading challenge, that in my opinion, it’s very doable.

It’s a list with ideas of book themes to get inspiration and, by the end of the year, you’ll have read at least 12 books.

So, are you up for a reading challenge? I certainly am, and I hope you are too.

Also, please feel free to share along!

Reading challenge