Opening a book can take us to faraway lands, with powdery white beaches and clear blue skies. It can take us back or forwards in in time. They can fill our eyes with tears or make us laugh aloud. Reading opens a window to the world, giving us a vision of things, we never dreamed possible. But though you might not realise it, reading can also reduce your stress level and help promote mindfulness by keeping you in the present and focused on just one activity.
Reading has many benefits, and these vary depending on what you are reading and why you are reading it. For example, problem-solving, which, in and of itself, can relieve stress. If someone is concerned about their weight and diet, and that is contributing to their stress. It seems that the more weight they gain, the more stressed out they become, and the more they eat. By reading books about good nutrition, they can learn to plan meals that are low-calorie and low-fat. As a result, their weight problem might disappear—and their stress level will be greatly improved.
Taking time with a good book also forces you to concentrate, concentration which might be otherwise lost due to stress. As a result, you learn to exercise your mind—an exercise that can bear much fruit. Thanks to your reading, you may notice you find it easier to remember things which can, in turn, reduce your stress level.
If you find that you don’t like to read, you might start with graphic novels. These comic book-like creations might appeal to you because of their interesting pictures. Or you might simply start with glossy magazines. In the long run, it doesn’t matter so much what you read as how much you read. Read in the grocery line, at the bank, or while pedalling your stationary bike. You’ll quickly find that the more you read, the more you will want to read, and the less stress you will feel.