What does reading do for you?

reading_grassPeople nowadays have to work more and get less time to think. Thinking and learning is an important aspect of self development, it is also essential for professional success. Reading is a vital basic skill for life. Poor reading skills tend to go hand in hand with social exclusion (Guardian,  2007, Does Reading Matter?).

That’s the application across the board, and reading is thus deemed to be A Good Thing. But what does reading do for you personally?

1. It keeps you sharp. Obvious, but reading promotes thinking as well as enhancing your general knowledge.

2. Reading reduces stress.  It gives you a quiet switch-off time from real life. Fiction especially enables you to escape into somebody else’s world. Sitting  or lying still absorbed in a book is very soothing for both body and mind…

3. As well as improving your written and spoken vocabulary, it trains the brain to remember things better.

4. For writers, not just those who make their living from writing, but for anybody who has to tap out some words in their job, it improves writing skills.

5. Reading gives you something interesting to say and helps make connections with other people.

QED (As the Romans used to say.)

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