People often ask the question: Is reading a hobby? Let me tell you that it is! Here you will find the ultimate list of reasons why reading is a good hobby!
To answer the question whether reading is a hobby, we first need to understand what a hobby really is.
A hobby can be defined as any activity that is done regularly, mostly in your free time and for enjoyment.
So, is reading a hobby? You can read books and magazines whenever and wherever you want, in your free time. You can also decide yourself what you want to read, so you can select books and magazines that you actually enjoy reading. So Reading does meet all of the criteria, and we can conclude that reading definitely can be seen as a hobby!
Reading Is a Good Hobby! And One Worth Spending Your Time On
Of course, you also want to know if it is a hobby that is worth spending your time on. Let me tell you that you should consider making it a habit to read regularly. Regular reading has many advantages, reading is a good hobby that can increase your overall knowledge level and help you improve various skills. Of course, it will also just allow you to have fun and escape the everyday life!
Below we have listed the main benefits of reading and all the reasons why reading is a good hobby that is worth spending your time on.
“Sleep is good, he said, and books are better” — from A Clash of Kings, by George R.R. Martin.
Reading Helps You to Relax
One of the most important reasons why people decide to read is because they want to relax. You simply grab a good book and find a quiet location and you are all set. What is more relaxing than spending a few hours getting lost in a novel or reading about your favorite nonfiction topic?
For a while, you forget everything around you – work, school, all the bad news in the world – you will definitely feel more relaxed afterward. Of course, if you read a horror story this might not be the case, but at least your daily problems will feel less important afterward.
You Can Read Anywhere and Anytime
Reading is a good hobby that everyone can do. All you need to read is a book that you actually want to read. You can read your book almost everywhere, of course, I would not advise you to read while driving your car or your bike.
Some of the most common places where people read are in public places such as coffee shops and libraries, relaxed on the couch or in bed, on the bus or train while going to work, or while taking a long bath.
It does Not Cost a Lot of Money
Reading definitely does not need to cost a lot of money. You can find reasonably priced books online in all of the very well-known online bookstores. You can also reduce the average cost of your books if you mainly buy paperbacks, which are considerably cheaper than hardcovers.
Another way to save money and spend less on reading is by buying books in second-hand bookstores.
Reading Reduces Your Stress Level
Because reading makes you feel relaxed and you often read in quiet places where you like spending time, reading will reduce your overall stress level.
Various scientific studies have shown that reading a good book effectively helps you to avoid stress. A recent study by consultancy Mindlab International at the University of Sussex shows that even reading for just six minutes can be enough to reduce the stress levels by more than two-thirds (68 %). You can read an article about this study in the Telegraph.
Reading Makes You Sleep Better
Recent sleep studies show that you will more easily fall asleep after reading a good book. You will also experience a deeper sleep and wake up feeling more energized. In addition, you will feel more satisfied as you have used your time productively. At least you did not spend hours checking Facebook or Twitter.
Reading requires your mind to think, to imagine the life of the character in the book or to try and understand the more complex topics in a scientific book. This will consume your energy if you read at night. In the end, you will get tired and ready to fall asleep.
What does not help you to sleep better is watching TV or checking your phone right before going to bed. So when you read a good book instead you will not be tempted stare at a screen right before bedtime. You will be set for a good night’s sleep.
Plenty of Books to Choose From
There are so many books in the world that you will never be able to read all of them. This means that you have plenty of books to choose from. Everyone can read and everyone can choose which books he or she really wants to read.
“Read the best books first, or you may not have a chance to read them at all “ –Henry David Thoreau
So reading definitely does not have to be boring! Reading is a good hobby and there is a book available for every taste or interest. Are you fascinated by a certain person and you would like to know more about his or her life-story? Then why not read that person’s biography or memoirs? Or do you prefer to read a thriller where you will have an adrenaline rush just after the first page? Then I am sure that you will find the right book – in the Action and Adventure Fiction section on Amazon alone you will find over 200,000 books!
Improve Your Vocabulary
Reading is a good hobby that will definitely improve your vocabulary. Unconsciously, you will remember words that you never heard before. You will see how you can use them in phrases and what they mean in different contexts.
Also, you will improve your grammar, as you learn how to build phrases, where to use punctuation and how to structure entire paragraphs.
Reading Improves Your Knowledge
Obviously, you will improve your knowledge if you read non-fiction books. Whether you read about arts, photography, history, cooking or a famous person, every book will uncover new insights. Every book will make you think about facts you did not think of before. In general, readers are more aware of how things work, why things happened in the past or who famous people really were.
Reading a book will give you the chance to process a lot of information and research in a relatively short amount of time. It is more efficient and probably also cheaper to read a book on a topic than to take a class or follow a course.
“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” ― Mahatma Gandhi
But even if you read a lot of fiction you will increase your overall knowledge and gather new information. Are you reading a story that takes place in a country that you have not been to? Or does the main character in the book have a profession or hobby that you had not heard about before? All examples of ways in which reading will provide you with new knowledge.
Reading Makes You Look Smart
When you read a lot of books it gives a good impression and makes you look smart. Additionally, you will be able to join much more conversations as you will have much more to say about a broader range of topics. You will be better at expressing how you feel and getting your point across.
“Always read something that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it” –P.J. O’Rourke
As reading also improves your vocabulary, you will use difficult, intelligent words more often… This will definitely make you look and sound smart!
It Makes You Look…Sexy
This is particularly applicable for men that like to read. Studies have shown that intelligence if one of the main characteristics that women look for in a man. So if reading improves your overall knowledge and makes you look smart, then it even makes you look sexy!
Reading Increases Your Tolerance
When you read a lot of books, you will learn about people in different situations, with different opinions, beliefs, and lifestyles. This will not necessarily mean that you will agree with everything that you read or learn about. But you will be able to better understand the situations of others and show more empathy. You will learn not to judge without understanding or knowing the story behind certain behaviors and opinions. In this way, reading can and will increase your tolerance in daily life.
Reading will also let you experience a lot of emotions – happiness, fear, excitement, sadness, and so on. By living these emotions while reading and learning from the stories that you read, you will be able to better handle these emotions in your daily life.
Improve Your Memory and Concentration
When you read regularly, you will improve your concentration. Once a story caught your attention and you cannot keep yourself from turning page after page, you will practice focus and concentration. This will be of great benefit in your daily life and activities.
Reading a book is not like reading a short article or an online blog post. A book requires your full attention for a longer period of time. You need to focus on the story and the main characters to fully immerse yourself in it. As the story unfolds, you will soon forget about everything else and keep your thoughts in focus. Unconsciously you are practicing your memory and increasing your attention span.
Reading Reduces the Risk of Alzheimer’s and Dementia
I recently read an article by the Fisher Centre for Alzheimer’s Research Foundation that explains how reading can reduce the risk of Dementia. It states that reading books and magazines can help to keep memory and thinking skills intact and preserve brain health.
The study the Centre refers to shows that people who perform mentally challenging activities most often had a slower rate of decline in memory.
Improve Your Imagination – Escape The Daily Routine
Most books do not have a lot of images and pictures. You can only read descriptions of what the main character looks like, the places that he visits or where he or she lives. You can only use your own imagination to creating the corresponding images in your mind.
Reading is a good hobby that will not only improve your imagination but also allows you to escape your daily routine. When you read a good book you can really get lost in the story. A book gives you the chance to escape your daily reality and experience a whole new world!
Reading a book gives you the opportunity to live experiences that you are not used to. You can really immerse yourself in the story and live the life of the main character in the book. Escape your daily life and get into a whole new one. Be the king of a mighty empire for a day, or feel the rush of investigating a murder case that seems impossible to solve. Feel what the character is feeling, understand his problems and concerns, think outside of your own world.
Reading is Fun and Addictive
Of course, reading is a good hobby and has all the above-mentioned benefits. But the most important reason to start reading or to read more regularly is simply that reading is fun.
Reading is not only fun and has a high entertainment value, you will also discover that it is very addictive. Once you finished a good book and turned the last page, you will soon be thinking of the next book you want to read. If that happens, definitely keep reading. You will have lots of fun while improving lots of skills.
You Can Even Make Some Money
If you love reading and reviewing books, then you might even make some money while doing so. Writing book reviews can get you free copies of books to read and review, or even get you a fee for each review. If you want to know more about this, make sure to check our list of hobbies that allow you to make some money by doing what you love.