If you have been to my blog before and observed it, you would have noticed that 80% of my blog is dedicated to reviews of Asian dramas and Web series. Yes, I gorge on entertainment shows. Fiction is my addiction and I devour it in every form. However, if ever ask me to pick between reading fiction and watching fiction I’ll pick the former without a second thought.
I developed a liking for reading at a very young age. The first book I ever read independently was a gift to my paternal aunt by her school for academic excellence. I do not remember the name of the book but it was about the ‘Lady with the Lamp’, Florence Nightingale. Ever since my love for books has not diminished a bit and I grew up to love books the most (by books I mean novels and not the books that we were forced to study in school).
Today, I spend most of my time engaged in either watching a drama or reading a book. And after dedicating so much time to the two of my favourite activities I can confidently say that I feel reading is a far more enriching and fulfilling activity than watching TV. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that watching TV is bad or I don’t like to watch dramas. I LOVE watching dramas. Dramas have changed my life for the better. But when it comes comparing the two I pick reading because of the following reasons.
1. No Eye Strain
I spend more than 10 hours in front of my PC. And I have really weak eyes i.e. I suffer from computer fatigue which is why I cannot look at any digital screen for a long time as my eyes start to hurt. Over exposure to blue light has also made my eyes sensitive to light (photophobia) in general which is why it is almost impossible for me to keep my eyes open while standing in the sun. Looking at a digital screen may have several ill effects but reading a book does not have any side-effects. Of course, if you read a book under poor lighting conditions then it will affect your eye-sight but if you read in natural light, it will cause no strain to the eyes. Whenever I watch something on the TV or my PC I am equipped with my specs, eye drops and eye pillow. These help in reducing eye strain. But when I sit to read a book I need none of these, not even my specs, for my task. It is just my book and me and no eye pain.
2. Makes You Look Smart
It’s true that you must never judge a book by its cover but it is ok if you judge a person by the book he or she is reading. Isn’t it? While travelling you will find a lot of people with their eyes glued to their phones but the moment you see a person with a book you instantly think that the person must be intelligent. And if you are a bibliophile then the first thing you will do is look at the name of the book the person is reading. The name of the book will give you a new impression of that person. And if the book is one that you have enjoyed reading then you might actually want to befriend that person.
3. Makes you Imaginative
A book offers you only words describing a whole new world while it is up to you to decide how you interpret the information. It compels you to imagine. And what you imagine is in your hands. For instance, I was recently reading a book in which the hero was said to be tall, lean with muscular arms. Since I had just returned from watching Siddharth Malhotra’s ‘Gentleman’ I imagined the hero to be him. Sometimes, the hero would even change to Dwayne Johnson but it was up to me to decide who I wanted as the hero. Now, I cannot do something like this while watching a movie because I have to accept the hero whoever it is. So, when I watch Judwaa 2, I will be forced to accept Varun Dhawan as Prem and Raja even though I know that no one can ever replace Salman Khan in those two roles.
4. Improves Your Vocabulary And Understanding
Books are a treasure box of new words. Every time you read a new book, you learn tonnes of new words and understand their usage. Through books, you also learn a lot about different cultures that exist on this planet. This could be a reason why I read books by Japanese writers because their writing is very detail oriented and they are extremely descriptive which helps me improve my writing skills.
5. Transports You To Another World
While reading certain books I have been so engrossed in them that I have lost complete track of time and place. After hours of reading when I would look up from my book, it would take me a second or two to come to my senses and realise where I was. I am sure every book lover must have experienced this while reading a book that enchanted them. It is a completely different experience to be transported to another world without moving an inch from your place.
6. Makes People Look At You With Awe
I have a lot of books that occupy several cupboard shelves in my house. I have hijacked my sibling’s shelves to house my books because my cupboard is not enough to hold them all. A few days ago, I got a lot of my books out because I had to click pictures for my bookstagram account. When I had a guest visiting, he was surprised to see the piles of books and asked my mother about it and she proudly stated that it belonged to her ‘writer’ daughter. She feels very happy when people admire my book collection. I wonder if she feels the same about the collection of movies on my PC.
7. Makes You Observant
A writer describes minutest of things in detail so the reader understands what he is trying to explain. Often, the same thing is described differently by different writers which gives you a varied perspective and you start noticing little things about people and places. Reading opens your eyes to look at things from a different angle.
8. Is Seldom Repetitive
You must have seen dramas or movies that seem to have similar plots or characters. But that never happens with books. I have read so many books till date but I have never found any content that would remind me of any other book. Yes, books may have inspired plots but their world building and characters are entirely new and never read before. You will always get something new to read and experience. No wonder a lot of serials and movies are based on novels.
9. Makes You Eloquent
Have you ever come across a person who bowled you over with his impeccable speech? Well, I always feel attracted to people who speak well. If you read a lot, you do not have to make a conscious effort at speaking or writing better because reading subconsciously registers words and sentences in your memory which will naturally come to you while you speak or write. It also makes you better at conversing as you become more confident of putting your point across clearly
Reading offers many benefits. I personally feel that TV is a good medium for entertainment as a good drama can help you relax and de-stress. But reading, on the other hand, is not only entertaining but is also a good way to exercise your brain. I hope this post inspires you to read and love it the as much as I do.