Picking up a book can be one of the most thrilling experiences. There is so much those pages have in store for you, a world you’ve never known. Taking the time to read can also be a rewarding experience as well. Not only are you absorbing a new book but you are also taking well-deserved time for yourself.
Reading fiction is shown to increase better decision-making in people by 50% to 100%, according to 2023 statistics from Cross River Therapy. They also say that reading can boost emotional development and career prospects by 50% to 100%.
More of their statistics specifically cover the effect reading has on mental health:
- A happier life can be reached by reading for 30 minutes every week.
- In a recent study, avid readers were found to be 10% more likely than people who don’t read to have better self-esteem. However, this is raised to 18% of people who read for 30 minutes or longer being factored in.
- Regular reading has been shown to lower stress levels by as much as 68%.
Now with the statistics in place, read on to hear why I think reading can benefit your self-love.
1. Reading is a form of escapism
In my opinion, I would take any chance I could get to visit a different reality. I love freefalling into a universe of magic or characters that I absolutely love. The joy and dopamine rush that I get when I read a book is unexplainable.
Something I am guilty of doing is reading the same book or series over and over again just so I can stay in that world. It will infiltrate my dreams and day-to-day thoughts. I will often dream of myself as the female main character so I can have the love interest all to myself. This might be an unhinged way to work on myself, but it feels so good I can’t stop!
I would rather be smiling about a made-up relationship or while reading a book than not reading at all! That’s how I see it.
2. The characters stories can be very relatable
I think a beautiful part of literature is the surprising relatability. These are made-up people, but most of their problems are very real. I find so much comfort in finding a character that has experienced the same traumas or struggles I have.
Not only does it make me feel incredibly seen, but seeing how they handle their situations allows me to work on myself. I cannot count how many times I have been genuinely inspired by a character’s actions and implemented them into my own life.
3. Freedom in choosing what you want to read about
I think that having the choice to choose is always something that should be celebrated. You can walk into any bookstore and browse through any section. The knowledge that I am an avid romance reader until the end of time but could, if I wanted, pick up a biography and fall in love with a whole new genre.
I think this freedom of choice can play into other aspects of life as well. You can fall in love with knowing that you have these bountiful opportunities at your fingertips and begin to make the most of them.
4. Books can be a much-needed learning experience
Similar to my second point, you may be able to get something from a book; a true learning experience. When I say this it can be as small as a new city you want to visit or a new outfit you want to try that a character wears. But, it can also be a coping tactic or approach to a situation you’re struggling with.
I am not a huge fan of self-help books. I am sure there are a few things that I could learn from them, but I often feel talked at or forced to absorb and immediately change after I read this information. Just by reading a romance book, I feel that I can grow as a person and learn more about myself.
5. The love from the bookish community can improve the love you have for yourself
There is something so inherently special about being part of a community of people who understand you. I never played sports or was on any kind of team, so this is my found family, this community of bookish people.
The joy I feel when I can be unabashedly myself and obsess about books rivals anything else in my life. It is so special to have those people in my life who get me, whom I can send BookToks or discuss steamy chapters with. The love I feel from those people in my life and strangers on the internet is unmatched and I can feel it warming me up inside.
I hope these statistics and my own thoughts on the matter were able to open your eyes to the benefits of reading on one’s self.
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