In all the festive craziness and end of term deadlines, taking time out of our to-do list to read novels can seem a bit of an indulgence. In fact all year round I hear people piously declare to me, “I don’t have time to read”, which is a bit of lie really. All of us have time to read, I know very few people who don’t have any leisure time at all. It’s a case of how you choose to spend that leisure time. For me, I can’t not read. I get unhappy, my creativity dries up- in short my happiness decreases and that makes me lose motivation and productivity. Unless I am really ill then I read or listen to an audio book everyday.
At the moment I am reading The Shallows: How the internet is changing the way we read, think and remember by Nicholas Carr. I have so many things I want to blog about this book but at this busy holiday time, I’m going to start by explaining why reading is essential happiness. When we read fiction we are able to get ‘lost’ in a book because our brain tries to recreate what we are reading. Our brain actually stimulates our senses and uses our memories so we feel like we are living what we are reading.
Reading fiction makes us see the world in a new way and makes our brain pay attention to the smaller things in life. Carr explains: “The words in books didn’t just strengthen people’s ability to think abstractly; they enriched people’s experience of the physical world.” If you need to de-stress or find happiness in everyday life again then you need to make time to read whatever fiction takes your fancy.
Do you make time to read regularly? Or, do you believe you don’t have time to read?