Why reading will improve your mental health

Since the days we were young, I am pretty sure we have all heard this before, somewhere in our childhood: reading (just like music) has many advantages that will improve your mental health and brain. Besides falling in love with a book or a character, which is the best feeling (until you finish it or the character dies, of course), our brain benefits from it, too.

As you probably know already, reading can be seen as the workout you do in the morning (or not) or the run you attempt to do every week. Reading is brain exercise. When you read for 10 minutes, you are practically sprinting up an down the stairs 5 times and you do 10 push ups. I think it is clear, even without this example, that reading is incredibly healthy for every human being. But how?

I have spent some time reading plenty of articles and here, I listed the 5 benefits of reading that I think are most surprising, important to the benefits that will (hopefully) convince you to start reading again. Read further to discover them all! 

Empathy

Books give you more insight in other people’s lives and in certain situations which you perhaps have never been in before. This new insight creates more empathy. You will be able to put yourself in another person’s shoes and for that empathy, people will thank you.

Stress release 

Reading requires focus on one particular thing, namely reading the words and connecting the dots in the story, and because of that skill, your body lets go of stress. Your stress level reduces because you are not thinking about other things and, if you read daily, you start to relax more and more. Reducing stress will also contribute to reducing anxiety

Memory

Uncovering words and puzzling stories together is an activity that turns on your brain functions. Because of reading, those functions improve and with that, visuals and auditory processes, your fluency (and even more) improves. But the biggest pro is: your memory does too! 

Connection in your brain

Reading creates more white matter in your brain. White matter takes care of the connection in your brain. So when you read, the white matter improves the connection in your brain. 

Attention spans

When you are reading, you brain has to focus on one thing only, namely the letters and words. This focus and attention also improves your attention spans, which makes sure you can focus for a longer period of time. So, reading intensively will pay off in the future! 

So have I convinced you already to read more? Hopefully I have, because reading is, as you’ve read, incredibly healthy plus you gain so much more knowledge and vocabulary.

If I still haven’t convinced you yet, you will want to read these articles: 

I am praying right now, that your list of ‘books to read’ will never end and you will be blown away by every book you read from now on:). 

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