A new strain of coronavirus emerged in China in the end of last year, and has led to a pandemic with lakhs of people confirmed as infected across the world. You’re reminded of your human condition and your mortality now more than ever.
You’re locked down.
While working from home, childcare and buying the essentials keep you busy, we urge you to take a few minutes out of your day to dabble into the things that can spark joy while you help flatten the curve.
One such possible activity could be reading the books that you’ve been wanting to read. While you consider that, we’ve compiled a quick list of how reading can help you cope with the lockdown –
Reading Prevents Depression
In these trying times, literature can be something you can turn to for comfort and solace. Surely it depends on your choice of book. And yes, books aren’t anti-depressants, but they surely complement the professional or medical help you’re taking. While books are great in their own right, they are certainly underutilized in health and recovery. Whether it’s a devotional text, new age spirituality, an autobiographical memoir, or a good old fiction – reading can promote recovery in people with mental health difficulties.
Reading Relaxes You
Reading invites your brain into the literary world and is apparently a faster stress relaxation method than say listening to music or a cup of your favourite beverage. A 2009 study by Sussex University researchers showed that reading may reduce stress by as much as 68 percent. This is, of course, when you’re reading something that you enjoy instead of something that triggers you. This could be that novel you’ve been meaning to read or a book on a hobby such as gardening.
With so much going on in the world, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and stressed. So don’t forget to allot a few minutes of your day for reading. Even as little as six minutes a day can help.
Reading Is Workout For Your Brain
Just like a morning jog is for your cardiovascular system, reading is like giving your brain a fantastic workout. With age, our brain and memory functions get affected – and an ongoing stressful circumstance can aggravate this further. Reading can slow it down. Reading also helps you train your mind to focus and concentrate more.
Reading Makes You Empathetic
Turning off your empathy is often the price you pay for surviving in a scary and unpredictable world. Unconsciously, you end up judging and distrusting people and situations. Reading a book, particularly fiction, can help you recall your shared humanity with those around you. When you witness someone’s story, you enter their mind and heart to live their story. So yes, reading makes you more empathetic and therefore more human.
If you’re looking to do things to keep yourself engaged during the quarantine, we suggest you ditch binge-watching and pick up a book.