5 Unusual Benefits Of Reading

by | February 24, 2015

Many of the benefits of reading are fairly straightforward. Through reading, you can learn something new, you can improve your vocabulary, and you can have a little personal time to do something you enjoy – all of which are great benefits of reading.

There are also several not-so-straightforward benefits of reading that you may or may not have thought of before. For example, did you know that you inadvertently make losing weight easier or help train yourself to be a better, more empathetic manager, and you can do so without even realizing you’re doing it? So check out some of these not-so-obvious benefits of reading and then grab a good book!

Prevent Disease

Studies have demonstrated that if you partake in activities like reading that engage your brain throughout your life, your cognitive abilities will decline at a slower rate as compared to those who do not. Basically, your brain functions similarly to a muscle in that the more you use it, the stronger it will be, and the longer you use it, the longer it will last. Further, while choosing not to read won’t cause you to have Alzheimer’s, choosing to read may actually help prevent or at least forestall the disease. By reading now and continuing to do so throughout your lifetime, you are essentially investing in your future.

Lose Weight

Listening to music isn’t the only way to keep your workouts engaging and more entertaining. Whether you use the little book stand on the elliptical machine or you listen to an audiobook via your earphones while you run, enjoying a good book while working out can actually help you lose weight. The reason for this is that you are more likely to work out longer. Having your mind focused on a book can help keep your mind off the discomfort and fatigue of working out. It can also keep you burning those calories longer since you’ll want to keep going in order to find out what happens next in your book. Let those plot cliffhangers be the key to your weight loss success!

Have A Cleaner House

An engaging audiobook is a great way to make everyday chores more entertaining. You can easily turn the dreaded task of scrubbing your floors into something you look forward to with the addition of a good audiobook. Not only that, but the time will fly by more quickly and the task will be done before you know it! Audible is a great service for purchasing audiobooks, and they offer a free 30-day trial to try it out. Free audiobook and a clean house is definitely a win-win situation!

Be A Better Manager

A 2013 experimental study demonstrated that being transported into a fictional story leads to greater levels of empathy over time. As you read about people living different lives and having to go through things you never have before, you are essentially emotionally transported into someone else’s life. You may find yourself experiencing a glimpse of the pain that people feel in situations that you’ve never had to face before. This quasi experience allows you to be more empathetic towards those who are really going through those issues.

With the higher levels of empathy, you are able to connect to people on a deeper level and understand situations more wholly. This skill is crucial to being a good manager of people since being a manager means that you have to be able to understand other people’s perspective in order to best understand how to address different situations.

Solve Problems

Similar to how reading can help develop empathy, reading can also help you see new or creative ways to tackle problems. Reading about how other people or characters have viewed and solved problems similar to the ones you face will provide you with more insight and options. Take advantage of the collective wisdom of all the different authors and writers out there in order to find creative solutions to your problems. Chances are that if you are presented with a new problem, someone else has already figured out the best way to solve it – so why try to reinvent the wheel!