Help For Counseling Students: Reading Can Improve Mental Health




Many seasoned counselors are worried that the pervasive use of social media is resulting in a decrease in people, particularly counseling students and upcoming counselors to be less interested in gathering more knowledge that is required to become the best at what they do. Additionally, the habit of reading a book has way more benefits mentally and emotionally compared to just relying on the web and having fun navigating through the lives of others through social media.

Counseling students – and all students for that matter – could find it difficult to meet the demands of their education and may only read as a responsibility. However, reading books as a form of leisure can be quite rewarding and beneficial. For upcoming counselors, reading books required of them and the genres of fiction, bibliography, narratives, and even romance has been shown to help improve their mental health. But how can they get motivated to grab a book instead of their phones?

Here are some reasons that would surely encourage you to do just that.

Reading Brings New Perspective

Books can take you to a whole new world and present you to various people and the challenges that they’re confronted with every day. You’ll learn about various situations and outcomes, how people tackle them, and the different consequences for their actions. In our daily lives, we are incapable of getting into the mind of another individual and know their intentions and struggles. But books allow us to read people’s minds, know where they’re coming from, and how their past and current experiences influence their choices.

Through all this, we can discover that many areas in people’s lives are hidden, and because of this, we may not completely understand their objectives and behaviors. Additionally, we can improve our capacity to show empathy towards others when we have had the opportunity to comprehend the story from their perspective.

Reading Enhances One’s Communication Skills

Reading books of various niches widens not just our vocabularies but also the ways by which you use words to express a message. By dissecting the myriad ways that people express things and methods that communication is successfully conveyed or not may lead you to think about how to communicate efficiently. Not everyone is blessed to be a wordsmith and can precisely convey how others feel and think. However, all of us can learn from prolific writers and the vocabulary that they use to describe various states of mind.


Reading Offers A Healthy Getaway

Each one of us has been confronted by times in life when we try so hard to find some distraction to forget our present difficulties, even just for a while. This desire to disturb our messy lives with something more enjoyable is not uncommon. But then we face the problem of what the distraction could be. Some people decide to get away from misery by eating too much, drinking alcohol, or using drugs. Still, others prefer the healthy escape of reading a wonderful find from their local library. With a range of books that we can easily access, you could set aside your mental and emotional burdens and get away to a different period, a different place, and even a different planet! Taking yourself to somewhere new and surrounded by your favorite people – characters from the books – could certainly be just what you have to do. It’s very cheap, safe, and healthy. It’s the kind of temporary escape that sets you up for healing and reenergizing.

Reading Is Great For Me Time

Spending time for yourself has positive benefits and is quite necessary for all of us. How to utilize that alone time is a usual question, particularly when there are many things that we want to do with others. A perfect choice for spending ‘me time,’ despite how many people you live in your home, is reading. You can stay in bed or your favorite couch and scan the pages of the book that you’ve always wanted to read but can’t find the time to. Me time allows you to be with your own thoughts, and it’s actually good for your heart and soul. You can think and feel whatever you want without anybody arguing or refuting you.

Reading Promotes Sleep And Relaxation

Sitting silently and permitting your body to relax while reading is not bad at all. When your thoughts are focused on that book you’re holding, your body is free from tension, and your heart rate decreases. Additionally, if you don’t usually get sufficient sleep, try grabbing a book, a romantic or a self-help book, something that doesn’t thrill or excite you too much.

Reading can also be a good transition practice from everyday toxic activities to that profound sleep you never got for some time. It helps you gradually wind down and get rid of the contemplation or anxieties that often precedes sleep.



In summary, books are a precious yet underestimated resource that can instill compassion, improve healing, and inspire those who are going through suffering or mental health disorders. Reading must be encouraged for everybody, particularly for aspiring counselors.

To end, here’s a quote from world-renowned author Lord Thomas Macaulay:

“…That I have not utterly sunk under this blow, I owe chiefly to literature. Literature has saved my life and my reason.”