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Bookworms Do It Better: 12 Compelling Reasons to Read More Books

Bookworms Do It Better: 12 Compelling Reasons to Read More Books

The more books you read, the better your life will be. If you don’t believe me, please consider these twelve compelling reasons to read more books.

1. You will optimize your brain power.

This shouldn’t come as a shock, but studies suggest reading makes you smart. Unlike watching television, which requires no thought process, reading is an active learning experience that will keep your mind sharp (even in old age).

2. You will increase your odds of success.

The more books you read, the more knowledge you will have, the more strategies and resources your brain will store, the more likely you will succeed.

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3. You will immerse yourself in a new world.

Sometimes our daily life can start to feel dull, dry or depressing — I know it, you know it, we all know it. At times like this, I like to dive into a good fiction book for a much-needed escape into another world, where I can forget about whatever problems are stressing me out. Whether you want to travel to the land of the Hobbits, a galaxy far away or a tropical destination in a steamy romance novel is up to you. You’ll come back refreshed after your mini-vacation to a fresh and exciting place in the world of words.

4. You will improve your vocabulary.

The more words you’re capable of using, the better you will become at expressing your thoughts and feelings. I couldn’t imagine how I would write articles like this if I didn’t actively aim to expand my vocabulary, because using the same few words to express myself would get awfully boring in a hurry (don’t you agree?).

5. You will have things to talk about at parties.

Reading more books will enable you to say the sentence, “Did you know ________?” more often, making it easier to start conversations with strangers (or, as I like to say, “People who aren’t my friends yet”).

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6. You will entertain yourself for a low price.

If you’re looking for entertainment on a budget, you can’t beat books. Thanks to the popularity of electronic reading devices like the Kindle and re-selling websites like eBay, it’s never been easier to entertain yourself for hours at a time, for the low cost of a few dollars.

7. You will discover surprising new ideas that are interesting and engaging.

Reading introduced me to concepts like mindful eating, relaxation exercises, and the importance of loving yourself. If I didn’t read, I wouldn’t even be aware of these ideas, which have defined my entire coaching philosophy. If you don’t read, you could be missing out on intriguing ideas that would likewise re-define your personal purpose or business philosophy.

8. You will eliminate boredom during down-time.

Have you ever found yourself stuck in a waiting room, bored out of your mind, with nothing to read but gossip magazines? If so, you should know that it is wise to keep a book in your purse or car at all times, as you never know when you’ll find yourself with some time to kill. Even if you just take a few minutes to read a chapter during your commute and lunch break every day, those minutes will quickly turn into hours if repeated consistently.

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9. You will strengthen your patience muscles.

We live in a society that expects instant gratification, which is anything but a blessing for most people’s success in life, as there is nothing “quick” or “easy” about losing weight or starting a successful business. While it might be “easier” to watch a two-hour movie, it is far more beneficial to spend forty-eight hours reading a book. Opting for the book over the TV will strengthen your patience muscles over time, resulting in more success in business and life.

10. You will become an expert in your field.

Don’t you think reading academic journals, articles, and books by experts in your field might make you better at what you do? If you can’t be bothered to learn more about your profession, then your lack of passion could be a sign that you’re in the wrong field. The more books you read, the better off you’re gonna be.

11. You will reduce stress and unwind into a good night’s sleep.

Exposing yourself to artificial light on your cellphone, TV or tablet reduces your body’s production of melatonin, which can make it difficult to get a good night’s sleep, if you do so late at night. You would be wise to cut off all electronics at least an hour before bed, and replace that with a good book, which is a much better sleep-friendly alternative.

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12. You will change your life.

I firmly believe that if it wasn’t for books, I wouldn’t have achieved an awful lot in my life; nor would I have the knowledge, imagination or creativity that I depend on as a writer, business owner, and coach. I hope these reasons to read more books encourage you to unlock your potential with the power of reading.

Three Questions for the Comments:

  • What are you reading right now (or, if you don’t have a book in process, what was the last thing you read)?
  • What was your favorite book as a child?
  • What book made the largest impact on who you are today?

Featured photo credit: Young Woman Reads Overlooking Santiago de Cuba – Cuba/Adam Jones via flickr.com

More by this author

Daniel Wallen

Daniel is a writer who focuses on blogging about happiness and motivation at Lifehack.

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Last Updated on June 20, 2019

Science Says Guitar Players’ Brains Are Different From Others’

Science Says Guitar Players’ Brains Are Different From Others’

There’s nothing quite like picking up a guitar and strumming out some chords. Listening to someone playing the guitar can be mesmerising, it can evoke emotion and a good guitar riff can bring out the best of a song. Many guitar players find a soothing, meditative quality to playing, along with the essence of creating music or busting out an acoustic version of their favourite song. But how does playing the guitar affect the brain?

More and more scientific studies have been looking into how people who play the guitar have different brain functions compared to those who don’t. What they found was quite astonishing and backed up what many guitarists may instinctively know deep down.

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Guitar Players’ Brains Can Synchronise

You didn’t read that wrong! Yes, a 2012 study[1] was conducted in Berlin that looked at the brains of guitar players. The researchers took 12 pairs of players and got them to play the same piece of music while having their brains scanned.

During the experiment, they found something extraordinary happening to each pair of participants – their brains were synchronising with each other. So what does this mean? Well, the neural networks found in the areas of the brain associated with social cognition and music production were most activated when the participants were playing their instruments. In other words, their ability to connect with each other while playing music was exceptionally strong.

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Guitar Players Have a Higher Intuition

Intuition is described as “the ability to understand something instinctively, without the need for conscious reasoning” and this is exactly what’s happening when two people are playing the guitar together.

The ability to synchronise their brains with each other, stems from this developed intuitive talent indicating that guitar players have a definite spiritual dexterity to them. Not only do their brains synchronise with another player, but they can also even anticipate what is to come before and after a set of chords without consciously knowing. This explains witnessing a certain ‘chemistry’ between players in a band and why many bands include brothers who may have an even stronger connection.

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This phenomenon is actually thought to be down to the way guitarists learn how to play – while many musicians learn through reading sheet music, guitar players learn more from listening to others play and feeling their way through the chords. This also shows guitarists have exceptional improvisational skills[2] and quick thinking.

Guitar Players Use More of Their Creative, Unconscious Brain

The same study carried out a different experiment, this time while solo guitarists were shredding. They found that experienced guitar players were found to deactivate the conscious part of their brain extremely easily meaning they were able to activate the unconscious, creative and less practical way of thinking more efficiently.

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This particular area of the brain – the right temporoparietal junction – typically deactivates with ‘long term goal orientation’ in order to stop distractions to get goals accomplished. This was in contrast to the non-guitarists who were unable to shut off the conscious part of their brain which meant they were consciously thinking more about what they were playing.

This isn’t to say that this unconscious way of playing can’t be learnt. Since the brain’s plasticity allows new connections to be made depending on repeated practice, the guitar player’s brain can be developed over time but it’s something about playing the guitar in particular that allows this magic to happen.

Conclusion

While we all know musicians have very quick and creative brains, it seems guitar players have that extra special something. Call it heightened intuition or even a spiritual element – either way, it’s proven that guitarists are an exceptional breed unto themselves!

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Featured photo credit: Lechon Kirb via unsplash.com

Reference

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