We all know that self-care is very important to recharge your body and mind and cope with stress.
Meditation, enough sleep, soft music, a light candle, and soft exercise in the form of Yoga or walking in nature are doing wonders for your stress levels.
It is also helpful to keep your tasks small and do little every day, using the Pomodoro method with that to-do list of yours. Decide a few things you will do for the day and leave the rest for another day.
But another very good and perhaps unrevealed way to have a perfect wellness experience is to read books!
A 2009 research study by a neuropsychologist, Dr. David Lewis found that reading for just six minutes can reduce stress levels by up to 68%. Participants in the study only needed to read silently for six minutes to ease tension in the muscles and slow down their heart rate.
Reading is often said to be beneficial for one’s mental health.
In another social science research led by Shelby Levine at McGill University, she examined whether recreational reading benefits mental health and what motivates recreational reading. Recreational reading also referred to as volitional reading, or leisure reading is the voluntary choice to read preferred books during one’s free time.
231 university students participated in Levine’s year-long longitudinal research study which involved online surveys on their recreational reading, motivation, psychological distress, and need frustration (i.e. the non-satisfaction of one’s needs).
Prior to taking part in the study, each participant completed surveys about their recreational reading goals, motivation, and psychological distress. At the final time-point a year later, participants completed surveys again on the number of books they read recreationally, psychological distress, and frustration.
The research found that over the year-long study:
# Recreational reading was related to decreased anxiety and depressive symptoms, associated with reduced psychological distress.
# Recreational reading is pursued by choice and may help to buffer against any negative feelings of external control.
# Reading may also buffer against the need for frustration and this may partially explain why recreational reading reduces psychological distress.
# For every additional book that was read recreationally, research participants’ psychological distress scores decreased. (The highest number of books read by research participants in a year was 23).
The study also observed that participants on average set a goal to read about four books a year, and read about four books a year. This could be a convincing reason for us to pick up our favourite books left waiting to be rediscovered again. If you would like to set a personal goal to read one book a month and gradually build up the number of books to read, that is a good way to start.
The research also predicted that if a book was read for leisure each month, the benefits would add up over the year and that results in a more significant or more powerful effect on their health.
This generally holds across self-care activities. Each practice of self-care such as reading or meditation may have a small influence on one’s mental health. When these activities are enjoyed regularly, they can largely impact one’s mental health. Overall, Recreational reading is a simple and cost-effective tool that could be used to help improve wellness.
Lange Publisher has books for everyone in all formats. Check out the Lange webshop and find your book today.
Have A great day my friend!