Reading – ironically enough, the word doesn’t exactly jump off the page. It’s not sexy. It’s not eye-catching, nor is it attention-grabbing. To many, the word elicits feelings of “meh” - of indifference.
But, to me, when I see the word reading, I think of a changed life.
What is so often misunderstood is that reading is not just about absorbing and enjoying the contents of whatever book it is that you’re reading. We get far more out of a book than simply the story, teachings, and message…let me explain.
You may think that a book finished equates to nothing more than temporary entertainment, useful insights, or fleeting adventure – but, you’d be missing the most profound byproduct. When you pick up a book, you’re actually re-wiring your brain, making it biased towards activity, rather than passivity. This nifty shift in your inner circuitry can manifest itself in monumental ways.
Reading may seem passive – but, likely only to the non-reader. As book lovers know, staying consistently engrossed and engaged in the story often requires great focus. Opposingly, when you look to reading’s biggest entertainment rival – TV – activity takes the proverbial back seat (like way back seat of a school bus back seat) while passivity takes strong hold of the wheel. You sit, stare, and…well, that’s it. Your mind is on auto-pilot.
But, some shows require great focus to follow along with the plot!
Okay…I’ll concede this half-truth. Some shows/movies/etc. do require mental focus to navigate what can be complex storylines. Yet, this focus is only required in quick and momentary flashes. Passivity still reigns supreme. Now think back to reading…comprehension requires your attention and active brain functioning. We cannot remember, nor therefore enjoy a book if our minds are not hard at work understanding the visual cues relayed from our page-scanning eyes. Activity reigns supreme.
Okay, so your mind is more active when reading, sure...but, this is life changing how? See, reading creates and nourishes an active mind, which is the foundation of a purpose-driven, happy, and fulfilled life!
This may sound like a big leap, but hear me out…let’s establish some common ground. I think we all can agree that a purpose-driven, happy, and fulfilled life is (1) obviously desirable, and (2) formed through consistent action, pursued confidently and in accordance with our goals and values. And here’s the crucial takeaway…
Only the active mind chooses action over inertia. Only the active mind fends off doubt, preserving self-esteem. Only the active mind develops goals and defines values.
We all stand facing the hypothetical door, the life of our dreams just on the other side. An active mind earns the key to unlock the life we deserve. A passive mind doesn’t. What you decide to do from this point forward – favoring activity or passivity – is up to you. Do you want the key or not?
If so, you know what you have to do. Get reading. Get active.
Reading – although sexy may still not be an apt description of the word, it can be described as something far better, far more useful in our life’s grand journey – a catalyst.