Read it and Weep Tears of Joy, That is, When You Learn These Benefits of Reading

As a lover of the written word, I read books on my lunch break at work, read magazines to relax at home, and dabble in the fine art of writing. While it’s always been a given that reading has benefits on the brain, I didn’t know to which extent. Not only does it have the long-term effect of slowing the progress or even preventing Alzheimer’s and Dementia, for example, but reading also provides instant stress relief by engaging and distracting your mind!

Plus, while you’re learning new bits of information to add to your knowledge bank, you’re also improving your vocabulary. Expanding your vocabulary could improve your career(who doesn’t like an articulate employee after all) and boost your self-confidence. Reading is also vital for learning a new language as it exposes you to the words used in context.

Your memory gets a boost from reading as well. While you’re remembering characters’ names and plots, these new memories create new synapses(brain pathways) while also strengthening existing ones. These together assists in short-term memory recall and even helps to stabilize moods.

Here are some other science-backed benefits you get from picking up a good read:

Improved focus
Improved writing skills
Better sleep
Increased empathy
Reduce depression

HBS Tip: Don’t have much time to read? Taking just 15-20 minutes before work to read will improve your focus for the day. Bring a book to read at lunch for a midday boost. Instead of watching tv for entertainment, open a good book or juicy magazine to relax.

Dionne Evans

Dionne Evans, the Founder/Editor-in-Chief of HBS, is a graduate from Marymount Manhattan College with a BA in Communication Arts. She has been a professional writer for over 7 years and loves everything food, beauty, and travel related. For more information on Dionne, visit:

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