Ritambhara tells us the benefits of inculcating a habit of reading, in the weekly column, exclusively in Different Truths.
Way back, in the early 90s, as a child, I was given a task by my father to visit the library every weekend and read some books of my interest. On having completed the task, he would ask questions pertaining to that over the dinner. In those days, it required a great effort to find a book on the library book shelves. At times, I felt it to be a Herculean task, but the slightest sense of accomplishment would boost my confidence and morale. Apart from handling the books in the university library, which catered to the students mostly pursuing graduation, post-graduation, and doctorate, it widened my knowledge and my outlook towards life over the years as I interacted with people around. It was overwhelming to find everyone extending a helping hand. Well, nowadays, it’s much easier to find anything at the touch of a screen. Still, the knowledge gained through reading hasn’t lost its sheen even till date. As I reminiscence, I would like to share the enriching experience, I gathered through reading and writing and the reason why we all should establish a bedtime reading habit.
- Teaches you Beyond Daily Horizon and Expands Your Vocabulary
“I believe the habit of constant reading of good books and scholarly periodicals and magazines in many disciplines is vital to give a larger perspective and to constantly sense the independent nature of life.” ~ Stephen Coney
Reading a good piece of write up can be hugely rewarding as it can teach things beyond daily horizons, cover all intricate nuances of life and widen your perspective in addition to enhancing your vocabulary. Let “ read more” to be one of the top goals in life in addition to “lose weight”, “stop binge eating”, “regular workout”, “meditation”, etc. Making reading as one of your goals is not very tough to cultivate. Reading can be very engaging if you choose the book of your choice. Initially, do not pick the one that seems extremely tough to you and force yourself through. Instead, go for the simpler one so that you gradually develop the interest in reading and do not consider abandoning the book. Remember, inculcating a reading habit is a gradual process and would be progressive only if you show patience, persistence, and perseverance. (In fact, the three Ps mentioned here are imperative for developing any habit for that matter).
- Enhances Mental Stimulation and Helps Evolve Strong Analytical Skills
“The advantage of the analytical approach is that it is widely applicable, and it can provide a considerable amount of quantitative information even with a relatively poor resolving power.” ~ Christian de Duve
Have you ever come across a conundrum and tried to solve the mystery before finishing reading the novel or even a short story? Puzzles, riddles or mystery stories put one’s thinking ability to test and they gradually hone the skill of analysing things critically. A critical thinker takes every opportunity to state their opinion clearly by considering all the aspects involved. This ability goes a long way and gets embedded in one’s attitude.
A person with critical thinking ability keeps his brain active and engrossed and is mentally stimulated; this, in turn, helps in preventing diseases like Dementia and Alzheimer’s through cognitive stimulation. It is like stimulating your brain through exercise.
- Helps you Attain Tranquillity
“The more tranquil a man becomes, the greater is his success, his influence, his power for good. Calmness of mind is one of the beautiful jewels wisdom.” ~ James Allen
Reading is a source of relaxation and offers inner peace and tranquillity. Those in the habit of reading spiritual books experience a sense of calmness, whereas reading self-help books instil the sense of security and motivate those suffering from the vagaries of mood swings and cope with the unpleasant situations. It also helps reduce stress at workplace, personal relationships or many other such innumerable issues faced in our day-to-day life in the modern highly-stressed world.
As they say, motivation is what gets you started and habit is what keeps you going. We can only be motivated by others, but forming a habit is in our own hands. So, pick a book and start reading as the habit of reading is the only joy that is everlasting even when all the other pleasures fade.
“Let’s be reasonable to add an eighth day to the week that is devoted exclusively to reading.”~ Lena Dunham
©Ritambhara Kumari Upadhyay
Photos from the Internet
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A Panjab University, IIT- Roorkee, and IIRS-ISRO alumnus, academician, and researcher, Ritambhara is a writer by choice. Her passion for reading and writing has impelled her to foray into the world of writing. As a freelance writer and editor, she loves to pen-down whatever comes to her mind. She staunchly believes, “Truth doesn’t admit any impediments.”