I have always been fond of books and stories that are based on true-to-life experiences of people from different era, different places, and backgrounds. Such stories fill me with a broad sense of inspiration, knowing that the experiences shared within these kinds of stories are not just works of fiction, but events that have a possibility of happening in my life.
The romance fiction genre is for the women left behind by time loveless who take solace in their fifty or so cats, they say. They’re daydreamers who give in to the wishful thinking about unrealistic love, they add. Balderdash!
This article tackles the benefits, and the myths (aside from the ones written above) brought about by reading romance fiction books.
Feeling blue? Would want to get inspiration or motivation? Why not pick yourself up a book today! Reading a book provides wisdom and insights for different topics nowadays. From family and relationships to your spirituality and mental health, books allow you to experience life from the stories of the characters.
Why Read A Book?
Reading a book helps you ease your mind. Whether it is fiction or nonfiction, there are four valid reasons why you should read a book. It is said to reduce stress, increase relaxation, combat mental decline, and even a treatment for specific health conditions.
Reading also helps you become a more empathetic person. As you understand and relate to the characters in the book you are reading, you get to know what the character feels and thinks.
Maja Djikic, Ph.D. and collaborators of University of Toronto conducted an experiment to expose several people on reading fictional literature, which they concluded that “these findings suggest that reading fictional literature could lead to better procedures of processing information generally, including those of creativity.”
Another research by Dr. Avnj Bavishi et al.found that “those who read books for an average of 30 minutes per day – say, a chapter a day – showed a survival advantage, compared to those who did not read books. The robustness of our findings suggest that reading books may not only introduce some interesting ideas and characters, it may also give more years of reading.”
Love, Relationships, and Heart Breaks
Getting over a heartbreak can be painful. Even words of comfort from friends cannot mend a broken heart. Although reading a book might not give you a new love, it can give you a new perspective on life!
Instead of asking yourself all the time what went wrong or who is at fault, reading a book written by experts can give you advice on how to deal with things. “Getting Over Getting Mad” by Judy Ford is the go-to book when it comes to handling conflicts and arguments in a relationship.
What Other Books Can You Recommend?
With the help of the internet, you get to choose from a wide range of topics. From love, relationships, and even to mental health, a simple Google search can provide the best recommendations for book lovers.
An easier way to look for books online is to type “pdf:” in the search box and add the topic that you would like to read. After clicking search, you will see a list of all the articles, books, online references, and e-books about the topic you are interested in. You can read them all in the PDF format.
Get Honest Book Reviews
If you are interested in what book is best to read when you need advice or motivation, there are many book review websites, such as yours truly, Booksbybarefoot, which provide book reviews of different topics.
Engage Others In Reading
If you have kids of your own, encourage them to read as well. Not only will this be beneficial for their vocabulary and mental capabilities, but this can also be your time to bond with them! There are specific ways on how you can encourage your child into reading more.
According to Dr. Alice Sullivan, “it may seem surprising that reading for pleasure would help to improve children’s maths scores.But it is likely that strong reading ability will enable children to absorb and understand new information and affect their attainment in all subjects.”
First, you must let them decide for themselves. Reading a book you are not particularly interested in would be difficult for a starting reader. Start with graphic novels and books with illustrations first.
At the same time, bring your kids with you in comic conventions as well as shopping for books. Exposure will help them expand their horizon in reading, and possibly learn how to choose books of their liking. Lastly, do not force your kids to read. It may hinder their interest in reading rather than encouraging them to read more.
As you have read, there are many good reasons why you should start knowing your books before reading them. Hope, you will be more encouraged to add reading to your daily habits.
Some millennials and adults are choosing to leave the churches they grew up in due to various reasons, like not liking the system, the introduction of new knowledge, confused about the existence of God, and more. According to the Pew study, nearly 23% of America’s adult population call themselves “nones,” or no faith affiliation. It is saddening that these people have chosen to leave their place of worship that first introduced to them the idea of God and wander to the unknown looking for something they don’t exactly know.
“However prevalent the superficial motives for being an atheist, there still remain in many instances the deep and disturbing psychological sources as well,” writes Paul C. Vitz, PhD.
I know you think why on earth you would read a book when there are so many things to do to get facts and information. There are news and YouTube videos. If some say for entertainment, there are videogames and smartphones. If the reason is for building imagination, there is Netflix and all sorts of visual representation of fantasy and science fiction. So why would you read a book? Well, let me answer that.
The Most Significant Reasons Why
Food For The Brain –Reading a book creates a world where you emerge yourself into. That is because the brain tries so hard to use its energy in providing you a better picture of your imagination. The truth is, reading consumes a lot of your energy trying to process your senses and emotions at the same time. No, it is not a bad thing. It is entirely the opposite of that. Reading is changing the brain structure by improving cognitive processes and making you more empathetic. Ken Pugh, PhD, says that “parts of the brain that have evolved for other functions—such as vision, language, and associative learning—connect in a specific neural circuit for reading, which is very challenging.”
It Becomes An Attraction – Reading widens your knowledge that creates a more elaborate expression, emotion, and opinion that you can share to others. “Reading helps us to take the perspective of different characters we normally wouldn’t interact with, and to give us a sense of their psychological experiences and how they interact with other people and situations,” says Maria Eugenia Panero, PhD, a research associate at the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence. It becomes a tool that empowers you to participate in an exciting conversation and has something to say to the subject. The particular setup is making you attractive because of the knowledge you are sharing in a discussion on an argument. In this case, you become more composed and confident about yourself, which adds an edge for an attractive personality.
Helps Improve Vocabulary – Reading does not guarantee a solution to your communication problem. However, it significantly expands your vocabulary that can later help you in expressing your thoughts and ideas. The more you indulge yourself into reading; you get the chance to improve your speech level as well.
Meeting Interesting People – Since reading gives you the knowledge, it becomes easy for you to join in a conversation. That is because you already have something to share with people. With that, you become open to the opinions of others. You can have a chance to document yourself in engaging in different subjects and participate in actual interaction. This way, you get to be in contact with different people which you can learn something from them as well.
Allow You To Become Who You Are – I know it sounds philosophical, but it is the truth. Books open new worlds where imagination and self-awareness meet. There is also a tendency that books can improve your skills when you learn and improve your mind. That is the reason why reading becomes a stage of building one’s self. It allows you to have an idea of how you should create your personality.
It Is Fun And Relaxing – Yes, reading is fun and relaxing. .”It really doesn’t matter what book you read, by losing yourself in a thoroughly engrossing book, you can escape from the worries and stresses of the everyday world and spend a while exploring the domain of the author’s imagination. This is more than merely a distraction but an active engaging of the imagination, as the words on the printed page stimulate your creativity and cause you to enter what is essentially an altered state of consciousness,” as explained by Dr. David Lewis, a neuropsychologist at Mindlab International at Sussex. There are lots of genres to choose from authors all over the world. The extraordinary thing about it is you control the elements and stories in it by creating your picture in your head. You can become as engaged as you want.
I only listed some of the benefits, but I can guarantee that there’s a lot more which you can give credit to reading. So, why not start reading now?
If you are a man struggling between your relationship and life purpose, choose the latter. Your purpose should always come first before your romantic relationship. Think about it. If a woman picks you despite the many great and more excellent men in her life, be thankful. That is because there is something she sees in you that she can’t find in them. It is something about your purpose and direction in your life that made her want you.
The Way Of The Superior Man By David Deida
If you are not familiar with the book, allow me to share its concept. One thing about it that men should take note is that not all women are the same. Men might think that women are more into physical attraction, hardworking men, honest individuals, or to say at least. A lot of them want a man that knows his purpose. You see, the problem with the most relationship does not originate by accident. All of the issues around the romantic relationship happen because of the choices someone is doing. And one of those is choosing a relationship over a purpose.
“Focusing only on gender differences when dealing with our partners tends to oversimplify things and exaggerate the truth, leading to less, not more, understanding of one another,” writes Gwendolyn Seidman, Ph.D.
I get that. When a man is in a relationship, he values his partner. There is this eagerness of wanting to give her everything even if she is not asking for it. However, that becomes one of the mistakes he does. Imagine you are a fun and exciting person. Your woman loves you because you are outgoing, adventurous, and a free-spirit. With that, she decides to go on a journey with you because she knows it will be fun to be around a person like you. But instead of allowing her to come on a journey with you, you prioritized her. You begin choosing the relationship over the kind of life you desire because you want to be with her. You become unaware that the reason why she is into you is because of your value to yourself.
The book also points out the concept of a man’s responsibility for the course of the relationship. There are the basics of decision-making. Sometimes, even the stupid ones appear included as well. When a man puts too much of his everything for the woman she loves, it is the woman’s nature to leave him. With that, two persons are getting dragged in an unfortunate situation. But only one of them suffers the judgment – and that is the woman. You see, people do not understand that human nature is so complicated that everyone gets to feel confused about everything.
“Owning what’s yours—mistakes and blunders included—is a sign of maturity, but owning everybody else’s mistakes and blunders, not to mention tasks, duties, and emotions, is a sign of over-responsibility,” writes Dr. Ellen Hendriksen, PhD.
There are so many examples in the book where it shows the same messages. But throughout the whole read, it ends up in a valuable lesson. It is all about the man’s attitude of improving himself and his relationship. That is through the process of gathering experience, caring more for his significant other, and understanding female psychology. I am not saying that all burdens should go to a man’s side. But when you think about it, the betterment of the relationship supports reciprocated acts that start from the guy.
“When we take these steps of interrupting harmful behaviors in our relationship and identifying patterns from our past, we start a journey of self-discovery that can be both deeply painful and richly rewarding,” writes Lisa Firestone, Ph.D.
You are probably reading this article because you already read the first part. It is where I shared a couple of books from Tim Ferris, Nick Winter, Neil Pasricha, and Stephen Covey. So now, I will try and add some books that will complete the list. Same as the last, these are the books that may or may not have an accurate representation of life, but these prove to make some points as well. So with that, here are the additional books that can change someone’s life.
Pragmatic Thinking And Learning (Andy Hunt) – I know a lot of people will agree to me that this is one of the best productivity books out there. One of its useful tidbits is the creation of habit where one should capture insight 24/7. It creates a direct inspiration to always having a way of getting ideas and information. There is an emphasis on taking notes often, regardless of what a person is doing. The book also has some tips on how to work on proper note-taking as well as constructing ideas correctly. “The mind screams that this is inconsistent. It’s not. Commitment is not about never failing, but about getting back up each time you do. And then committing again,” writes Steven C. Hayes, Ph.D.
The War Of Art (Steven Pressfield) – It is a book that demonstrates and articulates the idea of bringing something meaningful into the world. Reading the book helps people to understand the value of fighting the battle of working on things. The concept of the book talks about the ways of handling procrastination so individuals can bring their craft in reality. Since people are more into finding ways on how to start doing things, they often forget to work on staying on what they are doing. The book enables a better understanding of what needs to get done. “Delay and procrastination are not the same things,” Timothy A. Pychyl, PhD, says. “Let’s not confuse deliberate, thoughtful delay of action with the lack of self-regulatory ability known as procrastination.”
Thinking Fast And Slow (Daniel Kahneman) – It is one of the densest books on the list because of detailed knowledge of biases and heuristics. It has something to do with people’s mental ability to take and make decisions that sometimes lead to faulty thinking. The concept of the book is to help someone in stepping back before making any life-changing move. The idea is to build a concrete road to a targeted goal. But one the best effect of the book is the boosting of someone’s interest in general knowledge. Since the book tackles a lot of different topics, there is an enabler of growth in the mind’s bank of knowledge.
The Dip (Seth Godin) – Set Godin is a fantastic writer who writes a variety of well-known books. But The Dip is one of his most famous creations. It is written short and is very digestible. The book does not only talk about the right attitude into achieving success but also emphasizes on the traits that hinder it. The concept of the book focuses more on boosting people’s mental strength every time they enter a place where they find things a little to worse difficult. “A person with mental toughness faces challenges directly and is effective in solving them. I believe that someone who’s mentally tough has a combination of willpower, skill and resilience,” writes Gary Seeman, Ph.D.
For most people, it might take a while to absorb the lessons of these books. However, the incorporation of some of the ideas from the books can help in people’s significant value of change.
“[B]ooks are an invaluable but underutilized resource that can increase empathy, enhance recovery and inspire those with mental health difficulties,” wrote Rob Whitley, PhD. “As such, reading should be encouraged for everybody, but particularly those with mental illness—whether through formal bibliotherapy groups or individual prompting from family, friends or clinicians.”
This includes not only fiction books but also inspirational and self-help books. “Self-improvement books now account for at least a $2.5 billion a year industry in the U.S. alone, increasing since 1972 to at least 2.5% of the total number of books in print,” wrote Susan Krauss Whitbourne, PhD. However, she reminds us, “Getting the wrong self-help book can actually set you back in your search for answers to the dilemmas facing you in your life right now.”
For a start, I will not be going to say that these books I am going to share with you are the best in the world. Some may agree that these books are not that well-written or engaging at some point. However, they are the ones that share at least one idea, and that is to change someone’s trajectory life for the better.
The Motivation Hacker (Nick Winter) – It is probably the book on the list that is the least well-known. However, it is a book that can significantly create a significant impact on someone’s life. One of the main concepts that an individual can get from this book is the spiraling idea of success. It contains the fundamental truths about building the right mindful habits. It includes staring something small before doing something big. It is excellent for those individuals who can’t seem to understand why they always fail every time they set up a goal. The book emphasizes on starting a goal that can be tracked and does not demand any absolute perfection in one attempt.
The 4-Hour Workweek (Tim Ferris) – It is the book that targets someone’s professional life more than anything. The concept talks about the proper way of building a system that enables profit for the business. That is especially even if the individual is not entirely putting too much effort into handling a business. Honestly, the idea of the book is not as straightforward as it might seem. Some may agree that it is even more complicated at some point. However, the whole concept can help someone in changing his professional life. Not only on the way he wanted but also on the way he is supposed to do.
The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People (Stephen Covey) – It is probably the most well-known book that targets personal development. It proves to create a significant impact on someone’s life due to its excellent and straightforward concept. That is to “seek to understand, and then get understood.” You see, a lot of people are having problems in listening. There is always this eagerness to respond rather than trying to understand a subject. So when both people are in the same state, no one entirely understands each other. The book’s concept is trying to create an evaluation so that real communication can happen.
The Happiness Equation (Neil Pasricha) – It is a book that explains a lot about happiness consistently on a day-to-day basis. However, the totality of its idea stays focus on one particular subject, and that is retirement. It is where someone focuses on relaxation after years of hard work. The concept of retirement was once for aged people who will become the state’s responsibility. However, in the recent generation, it already became a goal in life. The book explains that the whole idea of just stopping at a particular age is not human nature. That is because humans are born to progress. So when they stop doing something, it means a waste of time.
According to Marty Nemko, PhD, “It’s not surprising that a well-chosen book would aid self-improvement in the general population. But meta-analyses also report bibliotherapy’s effectiveness in helping teens with mild depression or anxiety, as do individual studies of mild depression with young adults, and of mild to moderate depression in older adults.”
So if you already like these books, then you should get a copy of each. Also, check out the rest of the list on the second part of this article.
Whether they’re long or short, books are a way of inspiring and awakening the mind and spirit. They can serve as a porthole to another world through one’s imaginations. And as much as our parents, doctors, and therapists can help us learn how to deal with life when we are adults, books are children’s key to discovering some of the most valuable lessons about the value of family, of love, and life. According to child psychologist Bruno Bettelheim, Ph.D, a good children’s book must “promote [the child’s] ability to find meaning in life…It must stimulate his imagination; help him to develop his intellect and to clarify his emotions; be attuned to his anxieties and aspirations; give full recognition to his difficulties, while at the same time suggesting solutions to the problems which perturb him.” These books are not only limited to the fantasy or magical theme but include other genres as long as they tell a story, and they evoke feeling and inspiration. “In books, a child can find others who think like he does, or who cope with challenges he thinks are unique to him (like being deaf, or dealing with mental illness or loss),” says Dona Matthews, Ph.D. “This can be a catalyst for him feeling okay about himself, and discovering the strength in his own unique way of being.”
Below is a list of our best books for kids and children that instill valuable lessons to people of all ages.