An old classic pastime… In the fast pace world we live in, we often forget to take time out and sit with a good book. That’s a shame! There are so many benefits of reading including relaxation, knowledge and increased creativity.

benefits of reading bookshelf full of books
photo credit: Alfons Morales

What are the benefits of reading?

Not only is reading an enjoyable, relaxing hobby, it also offers many benefits for your health and wellness. Below are a few of our favorite benefits of reading:

Improved Vocabulary

Reading daily will naturally improve your vocabulary. Aim to read books that are slightly above your current reading level to increase your vocabulary exponentially.

When you are thinking about purchasing a book, open it up and read one page. If there are 1-2 words on that page that you do not know, this may be a good place to start. Highlight and look up the words in the dictionary as you go.

Improved Memory

Picking up and putting down a book throughout the week will improve your memory. Getting back into a story after you’ve put it down gets your neurons firing as you get lost in the story again and again. This triggers a creative area of our brains that we don’t often tap into throughout the day.

Improved Focus and Concentration

Sitting down, eliminating distractions and reading a good book will improve your focus and concentration. Of all the benefits of reading, this one is truly important this day and age.

We are all constantly multi-tasking trying to get multiple things done at a time. Reading is a great tool to practice sitting and focusing on one task at a time.

Reduces Stress

If you’ve ever sat down and read a good book, you already know that reading reduces stress. Sitting down to read and getting lost in a story lowers your heart-rate and naturally relaxes you.

Boosts Creativity

Reading and digesting new thoughts, ideas and stories will increase your own creativity. The ideas that you learn about while reading main offer you new breakthroughs in your own creative endeavors.

Increased Knowledge

One of the best benefits of reading is that it will make you smarter! Especially if you are reading non-fiction books that interest you. By reading consistently about topics you are curious about, you will become incrementally smarter in your field.


Need a break from Netflix, Youtube and scrolling on your phone? Crack open a book and learn something new instead of watching another episode of Cupcake Wars.

child on couch reading a book
photo credit: Josh Applegate

What kind of books should I read?

The best way to decide what to read is to think about your interests. What kind of hobbies do you have currently that you would like to learn more about? When your mind wanders, what are you thinking about?

If you’re still unsure what to read, go to a book store and wander the isles. Where do you stop? What section do you spend the most time in?

Curious what other people are reading?

Check out the current top-sellers on Amazon to see what top books people are reading.

Where should I get my books from?

There are many options for obtaining books to read including local bookstores, libraries, library book sales, Amazon (new and used), garage sales, estate sales and many more.

Want to track your reading and get recommendations on books that suite your interests? has recommendations and ratings for most books available today. They also have a yearly “reading challenge” where you set a goal of how many books you would like to read throughout the year. Goodreads has a social feeds for books where you can comment and compare your “bookshelf” and reading challenge to your friends.

Not into reading physical books?

If you don’t want to read a physical, paper book, you have several options to turn to including:

  • Kindle – A kindle is a handheld tablet that you can load with several books to read on the go. Kindles are perfect for people who travel frequently and don’t want to lug around several heavy paper books.
  • Audiobooks – Many libraries have their own apps and offer audiobook loans. One downside to this is that you need to wait for new-releases and popular books. You can also subscribe to services like Audible which allows you to listen to books while you’re on the go right from your phone. Try Audible for free with a one-month trial membership here.
  • Podcasts – While podcasts are a bit different from audiobooks, you can learn more about your interests while you’re on the go similar to audiobooks. You can also subscribe to your favorite authors podcasts to learn more about them on a personal level and their writing process.

Already own a kindle? You can download unlimited books and audiobooks with a kindle unlimited plan. Try a month long membership for free by following the link.

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