One of the greatest rules of thumb for surviving school, work and life in general, is to find an escape – an outlet or way to express yourself. It is important to ensure that you have a coping mechanism when a huge workload or personal drama plagues the week. Everybody needs a way to separate themselves from their reality at some time of their life – whether it be by taking a walk, listening to music, writing in a journal, watching a movie or reading a book.
Reading a book is a method of escapism that truly alleviates the stresses of daily life. It immerses the reader into an imagination that, even if it is not their work, is able to bring them into a world and on a journey that can permanently change the course of their own dreams, aspirations and thought processes.
Education is freedom – it has the power to save people from poverty, enable people to form their own opinions on the world around them, and it inspires. Reading, on the other hand, is more of a form of instantaneous psychological freedom. Through reading a book – fictional, historical, scientific, you name it – you can travel on a journey fighting fantastical beasts, one of love and self-discovery, a journey into the depths of the deepest oceans among some of the most frightening creatures on the planet, or you can simply heighten your benevolent qualities as a human being. Empathy – from being in another’s perspective. Compassion – from experiencing the rare love, kindness and forgiveness found in adventures wrought with hatred and vengeance. Love – from reading of families and partners crossing boundaries and overcoming all obstacles to be with those they love. The lessons learnt through reading are plenty, and, in some cases, the knowledge about the nature of humankind (acquired through reading) can be more mature and insightful than the lessons learnt by some human beings throughout their entire lifetime of experiences.
George R. R. Martin – “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one.”
Whether a route to escape your surroundings is necessary, or you just want to settle down and relax, or possibly excuse yourself from an awkward conversation – reading is a perfect way to separate yourself from the stresses of any day.
So please – for your own sanity – read a book.