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If you've happened upon this post, it means you're standing on the cusp of great adventure, or maybe just curious what reading a good book might have to offer. Well, look no further because here are my top ten reasons why you should love to read!
1. Visit New Places
Whether it be fantasy worlds or discovering different cultures, reading has always been a way to connect with the world around you. Step out of your comfort zone and go somewhere new with a good book.
2. Continue Learning
Education doesn’t end with graduation. Whether you pick up a text book, a cookbook, or read a historic fiction, there will always be something out there that inspires you to continue learning. Unlike school, now you have the freedom to choose what you want to learn and discover where it might take you.
For me, it’s cars and courage:
3. Be a Better Writer
What better way to improve your writing, than by learning from those that came before? Grab your favorite book and re-read it from an author’s point of view. What did they do well? Which literary techniques did they use? What made you fall in love with the characters? Take notes and apply them to your own stories.
4. Relieve Stress
Need another reason to read? What could be better than curling up with a good book and a cup of tea after a long, stressful day? Get lost in a fantasy or seek solidarity in a self-help book. Not only will you be relaxing, but you’ll subconsciously be learning as well. So, whatever your guilty pleasure, indulge.
5. Expand Your Vocabulary
This is another great tip for writers. If you come across a word you don’t know or have to look up, WRITE IT DOWN. But don’t stop there. Try to incorporate it into your writing, even if it’s just a short warmup piece. The more you use it, the better it will stick. Make it a goal to read something more challenging and learn a handful of new words every week.
This is also great for learning a new language. I use sticky notes whenever I learn new words in Spanish so I can leave them all over my house and see them every day. (For more sticky note uses, check out my post here.)
6. Get Connected
Join a book club and discuss your favorite books with actual in-the-flesh, real life humans. Or if you’re like me and hate leaving the house, you can join an online book club. Because let’s be real, as much as we love our fictional characters, they don’t always hold the best conversations. The point is, you’re connecting with like-minded people who can offer you new perspectives on books and topics you’ve never thought about.
At the very least, you should be excited enough about what you’re reading to reach out and recommend it to a friend. Because we all know our friends have the best recommendations.
Like something you read on my blog? Feel free to share it to social media. Or, leave me a shout out in the comments with books I have to read. I always love getting recommendations, so get connected!
7. Dive In
One thing Jesse and I love about reading is the ability to submerge yourself in the story. Some of the best stories feel like you’re in the driver’s seat. The protagonist’s choices are believable. Our wants are the same as the character’s wants. We need to find out what happens next. We’re invested.
Some of my favorite books growing up were the ones where you chose your own adventure. I was always awful at the Goosebumps stories because I’d go upstairs in the haunted house or investigate the strange noise.
Look for books that make you feel front row to the action, even if it’s just a romance. You should feel what the characters are feeling.
8. Get Moving
Books are portable. You can read anywhere you can get comfortable. Better still, they don’t require batteries or the internet (unless you prefer an ebook). I like having the freedom to grab my book and go outside on a nice day, or toss one in my bag when I’m traveling. You can even download an audio book and listen in the car or while you work out. Don’t feel limited to reading in a big plush chair in your pjs. But also do you, if that’s what you like. Don’t be afraid to find new places to read whenever you can. It might just help you immerse yourself into the story that much more.
9. Involve the Family
If you have kids, this is a great opportunity to perfect your silly voices. Take turns reading different parts. Kids need to be exposed to reading in the home in order to fall in love with books and more importantly STICK with it. Reading together is also a great time to talk about topics they might not understand, teach valuable life lessons, and practice empathy.
Don’t have kids? Not a problem. Read to your significant other. It’s a great way to build intimacy. Have other bookworms in your family? Start your own little book club. Take turns picking what to read next. Challenge each other to see who can finish their reading list first. See who can solve the murder mystery first. Reading is always more fun with family.
10. Get Creative
Let those creative juices flow. Come up with your own stories. Take your favorite characters and expose them to new worlds. Create your own original characters. Let it inspire art, music, comics, video games, whatever your outlet may be. Host a book themed party with literary snacks and novel inspired games. Closing a book after reading the last page shouldn’t be the end. Do something with what you’ve just read, discovered, and experienced. Even if that just means sharing it with a friend.
Let me know if I missed anything in the comments below. Tell me why it is you love to read!
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Much love and many books,