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Four ways reading books can help reduce anxiety and stress

 Books give you the privilege of adventure and promised relaxation (Shutterstock)

It’s no secret that books are a powerhouse when it comes to leisure. From different adventures to fantasy and real life stories, it is amazing how people’s thoughts and experiences can take you to different worlds and even change your life.

Curling up and reading your favourite book is not only satisfying but it can also positively impact your mental and emotional health. With the current state of affairs considering all the chaos and stress around us caused by the pandemic, the easiest way you can escape this crazy world is by slipping into another one. Here are some ways books can help you reduce anxiety and stress:

Increases relaxation

Most fictional and fantasy novels fully engage the mind and as a reader you totally drift into another dimension. When the brain is fully engrossed in one activity like reading, it reduces stress and enhances relaxation by improving the quality of what your mind is engaged with. Furthermore, the printed words will stimulate your creativity and broaden your imagination as you essentially drift into another state of consciousness. A good book will keep you truly entertained and ultimately relaxed.

Fights mental decline

Sometimes our thoughts and stresses can be so overwhelming we start to forget things we know so well. For instance, you could find yourself forgetting your favourite musicians name or a common hangout joint, it might be a little worrying but it’s no cause for alarm. Reading books will not only expand your imagination but will also promote your brain activity beyond your anxieties and stress. Like any other body part, the brain also needs nourishing to function at full capacity throughout our lives.

 Reading expounds your imagination and improves your brain activity (Shutterstock)
Gives you different perspectives to life

In most cases when we are stressed and anxious about the things around us, it often feels like we are drowning and all alone. However, when you make it a norm to read a variety of books you get to learn about people’s struggles and how they overcame them. When you realize that whatever you are undergoing is normal it may help you overcome your anxieties faster and easily. Also some books can give you tips and secrets on how to overcome your struggles and anxieties.

Teaches you empathy

Other than all the other amazing benefits of reading books, it will also teach you empathy and self-awareness. You will not only think of yourself as though the world revolves around you but you will be able to understand what situations other people might be in. Certain story lines will keep you engrossed and you will learn to empathize with the different characters and understand their motivations and behavior patterns. When you can understand human behavior from books most of which apply in real life, it can help you better your relationships with the people around you and see life in a totally different perspective, which could ease your anxieties.   

Tip:  As a beginner start with smaller books and of topics that interest you this way you can at least finish a story once you open a book. Join a book club if you must to keep you company as you read and hold you accountable.

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