Challenge Old Beliefs – Feeding the Drive to Self-Actualize

The pandemic we find ourselves in has done more to upend our lives beyond health and economics. Staying occupied with thoughts of these two survival necessities has held us all captive to the internal strife within. Much like clinging to a 2-inch railing so we don’t plunge off a 60-story building. The obsession allows for little more. The result is a stalling of our true purpose – the drive to self-actualize.

It is important that we continue our progress despite our current state. I am not saying that you should disregard either your health or your money needs. These must be taken care of to maintain and support life. But when this is all we accomplish during the day, life grows stale. Without realizing it, we soon find ourselves fighting the inevitable listlessness that such striving produces.

The Road to your future starts now. You’ll find beauty around the corner. (“Newfound Gap Road – Great Smoky Mountains National Park, TN” by pvarney3 is marked under CC PDM 1.0.

Breaking free from the drone of lack, slack and indifference is no easy task. It takes courage, fortitude, and determination. It takes a strong-willed effort to move freely through the concrete bonds of apathy to return to full purpose and discovery. Sometimes we need a little push, a little emotional jumpstart.

It is my hope that this blog will give you that jumpstart. That here you will find help on your way back to the path you were born to take. To the goals you were meant to accomplish. To the life you were meant to live.

We will explore new ways of thinking, inspiration, encouragement, and guidance to life’s mysteries. Our topics will include self-discovery, mind-body connection, perception, critical thinking, emotional healing, and much more. Motivating insight and knowledge to personalize. Open-minded differences of opinion are welcome.

If you are ready to:

  • Take back your life from the clutches of disheartenment;
  • Start or restart your personal growth journey;
  • Boost your day with a shot of optimism;
  • Find solace in a community of like-minded folks;
  • Expand your insight and intelligence; or
  • Open your mind to a deeper understanding of the world in which we live . . .

. . . make yourself a promise to tune into this online journal for five minutes a week.

I hope to see you jump on board. I’m looking forward to our journey together.

Copyright 2021, Monica Nelson

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Grudges – the Tie that Binds You to Misery

People hurt us. Whether intentionally or unintentionally, you are bound to run into someone somewhere who is going to wound you deeply.

Some years back, there was a group of people who caused great hurt to our family. We felt that they handled a disagreement in an insensitive and destructive way, causing pain in our family. Over the years, we have not had to come in contact with any of the three or four families involved. But recently, one of the women from this group took a position in which I had to interact with her every so often. I didn’t realize until that moment when I first had to connect with her just how hurt I still was over the incident. I soon realized that I was holding a grudge against her and everyone else associated with that incident so long ago.

Image courtesy of Gerd Altmann (Geralt) on Pixabay

A kind of darkness of soul took over me when I had to talk to her. I felt sick inside. It was a struggle to be civil and cordial to her. I had a hard time looking at her face. Although over a decade had passed since the incident, I hadn’t forgiven her yet. It became necessary to admit to myself that I was holding a grudge.

Grudges are destructive. They can be destructive to the target of your grudge. They are definitely destructive to you. It is never a good environment for your mindset to reside. It’s dark in its presence and clouds all the good in your life with negativity.

It is also destructive to your health. It can cause anxiety disorders, headaches and migraines, strokes and heart issues, high blood pressure, cognitive decline, and a compromised immune system to name a few.

Forgiveness is the solution. But for many of us, it is hard to forgive what we perceive is an injustice. We like to feel that we are in control. When there is an injustice done toward us, that feeling is challenged.

Forgiveness does more for the forgiver than the forgiven. If you are on a path of self-actualization, not being able to forgive is a barrier that will limit your growth.

Try reframing the situation. Look at it as a life event that is there to teach you something.

Image courtesy of Gerd Altmann (Geralt) on Pixabay

In his book, Radical Forgiveness, Colin Tipping sets out his steps to forgiveness. They are:

  • Tell your story – explain how you were victimized;
  • Feel the feelings – the feelings you have are valid – they need expression;
  • Collapse the story – take away interpretations, judgments and expectations – these only add to your suffering;
  • Reframe the story – be open to the possibility that the incident happened in order to enlighten something that requires your attention – that it is there to bring growth;
  • Integrate the new story – let your new story become part of you.

I use this method in my own life, but I found that I had not applied it to the incident I described above. When I did, the transformation was amazing. And I identified a trait within myself that I needed to work on.

You, too, can turn the misery of a grudge into a personal triumph, as well as eliminate the negativity and possible health concerns it brings with it. It’s up to you.

Copyright 2022, Monica Nelson

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Just How Destructive is the Allure of Money and Power

The ultimate source of happiness is not money and power, but warm-heartedness.

― Dalai Lama

Image courtesy of QuinceCreative on Pixabay.

In the Smithsonian Magazine article Why Power Corrupts, Christopher Shea highlights a study that identifies when power corrupts the individual, and when it does not. The answer lies in the moral code of that person. People in power can do greatness if they have a sense of self that encompasses fairness, compassion, generosity, and like values.

The findings were that power itself did not corrupt the individual. Power brings out and strengthens that person’s already existing values.

My father was fond of saying that the root of all evil was money (and power). I think he got it wrong. The difference I see is that it is the allure of money and power that can corrupt. In the right hands, it can lead to positive leadership and prosperity for all. In the wrong hands, it can destroy people’s lives, as witnessed by the many corrupt world leaders we’ve seen down through history. It all depends upon a person’s motivation.

The positive leader’s motivation is not in the allure of money and power for itself. An individual who keeps their generous and compassionate core values as their focus for their actions will affect life-changing results. Money and power may or may not result as a by-product of their pursuits.

The person whose motivation is strictly on how much power they can garner for themselves, or how much money they can make, will lead themselves (if not already there) into corruption. And eventually into ruin. This type of motivation is exploitative and robs that person of their true purpose in life.

Image courtesy of PublicDomainPictures on Pixabay.

It is very easy to give into the allure of money and power. We are naturally drawn to those things that make us feel good. And it is easy to desire the attention and indulgence money and power can provide. The irony of that belief is that the result is fleeting. And like an addiction, it must be fed greater and greater amounts to come up with the same boost to a person’s satisfaction.

True happiness comes from within. No external stimuli will produce any contentment close to the joys that come from living an authentic life. Integrity in following your conscience brings peace of mind and true happiness.

Avoid the allure of money and power. Its destructiveness can sabotage your happiness. Instead, pursue what is pure, good and in line with your true purpose. As the Dalai Lama points out, true happiness comes from a warm heart.

Copyright 2022, Monica Nelson

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This is Your Greatest Personal Growth Ally

When I was very young, I wanted to be a fashion designer. I entered a very small, specialized fashion college in hopes of fulfilling that dream. That’s where I met “Jenna.” Though we were never close friends, her effect on me was impactful and lifelong.

Image courtesy of Gerd Altmann (Geralt) on Pixabay.

I had never met anyone like Jenna before. She was the most overtly creative person I had ever met to that time in my life. She didn’t wear the latest fashions, nor did she dress conservatively. She shopped (and made no pretense about shopping) at thrift stores for her couture. Her outfits were wildly unique. She made use of items other than clothing for her wardrobe. A Lady Gaga of the 70’s.

What stood out more than her attire was her confidence. For the most part, the other students in the school considered Jenna eccentric and “weird.” There was an underlying disdain for her that was undeserved. She was always nice and very supportive to me. But she held herself in quiet poise and elegance which unnerved many of the people I considered friends.

It was that composure and sophistication that kept her in my mind for years following. Jenna didn’t let the negative energy of so many of the people that surrounded her make her change in any way. She boldly went into life being herself. Being true to who she was. And not afraid to let her personality and individuality show. She continued to be confident in herself.

She became somewhat of a silent mentor to me. At the time I was at this school, I was mousey and timid. I had little confidence. My belief at the time was that I had to aspire to be the best “everyone else” I could. Be like everyone, but better, so they would accept and love me.

Image courtesy of Barbara Jackson on Pixabay.

I would learn, as it turned out painfully slowly, that being like everyone else meant hiding who you really are. And that was the most destructive attitude I could have if I wanted to grow as a person. Being yourself is your greatest ally in personal growth and improving your life.

When you are yourself, you expose who you genuinely are to the world. Your strengths and your flaws are equally exposed. We grow by interacting with one another in various forms of relationship. These relationships teach us what is desirable, and what is not, in our character. If we do not allow ourselves the vulnerability of displaying our authentic self, then we cannot experience the learning power released through that authenticity.

No one is perfect. No one has all the answers. But through the synergy of our connections with others, we learn to improve and become a better version of ourselves. Our best ally in accomplishing this is being who we truly are. By being ourselves.

Copyright 2022, Monica Nelson

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People of the Heart – The Yin and Yang of Human Behavior

I’ve spent a lifetime studying human nature, person-to-person behavior, the good and the bad. I am not a psychological professional – only an interested bystander. But after 40-some years of observation and contemplation, I’ve decided that human conduct boils down to two different sides of the same coin — Heartbreakers and the Heartbroken.

Each one of our interactions with another can be classified as positive or negative. Damaging or uplifting. Cruel or compassionate. All reminiscent of the philosophy of Yin and Yang.

The Yin and Yang, from ancient Chinese philosophy, represents opposites. But the underlying theme of the philosophy expresses the interconnectedness of our world. We would not have one without the other. Without shadow, there is no light. Without negative, there is no positive. Without cold, there is no hot. Etc.

Image courtesy of GDJ on Pixabay.

It is a simple philosophy that is relevant today. It is in the interplay between people at work, people at play, people at any activity they engage it. We are either heartbreakers or we are the heartbroken. We are the instigators of pain or we are the purveyors of positive reinforcement.

While it is easy to label one good and one bad, we might step back and take a more holistic approach. One that brings about growth. Caveat: In no way does this excuse the evil-doer from purposeful and extreme atrocity.

The Role of the Heartbroken

When someone hurts us, it can be intentional, unintentional, or simply a misunderstanding. There is an opportunity for growth in all of these situations. If it is intentional, you may need to look at the type of people you attract and allow into your inner circle. There are many reasons why we might attract the “wrong crowd.” Repeated incidents of hurtful people in your life may signal self-esteem issues or other personal attitudes in which you are harming yourself. Finding this out can signal a need to see a qualified therapist as the most efficient way to deal with these kinds of issues.

If it is unintentional, you have an obligation to talk to the offender. There may be circumstances in their lives that caused them to lash out. You may be the target, but not the cause of the problem.

A misunderstanding is the best situation. You must talk to the person who hurt you and share your feeling of hurt, betrayal, etc. These offenders need to learn how their inadvertent behavior caused pain. They are usually the ones who will be the first to apologize and make it right.

The Role of Heartbreaker

Image courtesy of OpenClipart-Vectors on Pixabay.

If the shoe Is on the other foot, and you are the person causing pain, there is opportunity here too. Sometimes it is hard to see our own failings and shortcomings. They often play out in unintended ways and toward innocent targets. Judgementalism, self-centeredness, arrogance, dishonesty, jealousy, sarcasm, are just a few of the undesirable characteristics we may find within ourselves. If you truly are on a path of personal growth, negative-behavior traits are parts of ourselves we need to work on. Hopefully, you have an aware target who has the courage to confront you in a loving and compassionate manner.

Whether the heartbroken or the heartbreaker, there is opportunity for growth on both sides of the coin. Through the yin and yang of human behavior we become more heart-centered. In this state, our best selves arise. Embrace both, with genuine discernment and forgiveness, to see clearly the higher purpose of pain in human behavior.

Copyright 2022, Monica Nelson

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Anger Energy is Real – How Will You Use It?

Several years ago, I applied for and got a contract writing position with a temp agency. I had answered an online ad, been given the information, and went on the interview. It was an exciting opportunity with the possibility that the contract would eventually turn into full-time employment. The agency called me shortly after the interview and told me that the company wanted to hire me. All I had to do was to sign their contract, return it, and begin work at the client company.

Image courtesy of Peggy_Marco on Pixabay.

When I had initially talked to the representative of the agency, I was given the details of their expectations and what they would provide in return. When I got the contract and read it, I discovered that there were discrepancies in what I was promised and what the contract laid out. From my perspective, it was duplicitous, unfair, and outrageous. Not only had I been completely misled, but the tenets I would be expected to conform to were out-of-line with standard business practices.

After talking to several different representatives of the company, I came to believe that it was not just one employee putting forward this doctrine, but the entire company. I was angry.

I sat down and drafted a reply to go with my rejection of their offer. When I had finalized it, I handed it to my husband to read. His reply after reading it: “Wow, you really know how to tell someone to ‘go f**k themselves’ without saying those exact words.”

I like to think I am a good writer. I work at it daily, and have for decades. But what made my rejection letter so powerful was the energy behind the anger I felt at the contemptuous, misogynistic, and exploitative way I was being treated. The anger fueled a mighty power in me (one that we all have) to stand up for myself and what I felt was right.

This energy (power) sits dormant in us most of the time. It comes out when anger ignites it. But the way it expresses itself depends upon the choices of its origin. We can become destructive to ourselves and others, lash out in inappropriate ways, or avow/take revenge. These reactions quell the power, but they only serve to hurt yourself and others.

Image courtesy of EContti on Pixabay.

There is another option. We can also saddle that anger and steer it into more positive directions. My rejection letter set forth my indignation while maintaining a respect for the other parties (deserved or not). I stated my case in strong, reinforced language without resorting to the tactics of which I disagreed with.

This power can be used to defend yourself, motivate, set boundaries, stimulate action, create great works of art, and many other positive ends. The choice is yours. Do you want to release anger in a seething fury, or do you want to direct this very potent energetic force toward creating good in your life?

If you don’t know where to start, here is a great article I found that can help you out.

The forceful energy that is anger can be used for good or for unscrupulous means. You must choose one or other because denying it doesn’t exist does not work. What choice will you make?

Copyright 2022, Monica Nelson

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The Subtle Power of Sending Love to Yourself and Others

Many years ago, I discovered the Hawaiian prayer of Ho’oponopono. It is the practice of getting into a meditative state and repeating the mantra:

I’m sorry.

Please forgive me.

Thank you.

I love you.

As I became comfortable with it and practiced it, something unusual happened. I experienced a feeling that I had never felt before. During the prayer, my muscles would become wholly relaxed, and my mind became – I can only explain it as – blank. The cares and concerns of my conscious state left behind. It was not just that. I began to feel a movement, like subtle energy flowing like a river around inside my body.

From this happening, I decided to try something on my own. When a person came to mind, someone in whom I was having a conflict or who I knew was struggling with a personal issue, I would skip the prayer portion of Ho’oponopono and simply sit with the intention of sending that person love. I experienced much the same feeling within myself described above, but the “energy flow” changed. Instead of just flowing around inside of me, it felt like it swirled within me, then gently surged away from me.

Now, I have no evidence that this practice caused any reaction other than in my own body, or that it helped anyone in any way, but I am optimistic that it makes a positive difference.

Image courtesy of AndPan614 on Pixabay.

There is an eastern school of thought that believes that energy or “Qi” flows through our bodies. Western medicine has begun to adopt some of its healing practices (like acupuncture and Tai Chi) without fully accepting it’s philosophy. I am of the opinion that if it doesn’t hurt you, and there is anecdotal evidence or even the possibility it might be beneficial, why not?

There are many unexplained phenomena that has an overwhelming number of examples that are hard to deny. So, it may be that your “energy” is a factor in helping someone overcome a problem or feel the presence of love, whether they know where it came from or not. Or that may all be nothing but hooey.

What I do know is that it makes me feel better. I feel empowered. Like I am helping someone in an extraordinary way. I immerse myself in the satisfaction of loving someone who may not feel the same way about me. With so much hate and revenge in the world, I indulge myself in the possibility that I can counteract it in some small way. This in itself makes it worth the effort.

You also can use the intention of love, making its target yourself. If you intend that love back toward yourself, you will know its power first-hand. Say you need a confidence booster before a big event, or you simply struggle with self-esteem, it can be a powerful meditation to use alongside therapy and other tools for building self-confidence.

Either way, the power is there. Love, with all its subtleties, is the most powerful of emotions. Harnessing that power is a positive growth practice. Give it a try. What have you got to lose?

Copyright 2022, Monica Nelson

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Do Your Civic Duty Using Only a Book

We have come to the final post in our series on the benefits of reading. You may think this does not affect you personally, but it does in an indirect way. Reading fosters healthy societal interaction and expansion.

Down through history, from the earliest known facts about our ancestors’ lives, we’ve discovered that story was a very integral part. When our forebears began to speak, they told stories. Evidence of storytelling date back at least 36,000 years ago to the Chauvet cave in France. These markings have been interpreted to tell the tale of a volcanic eruption.  These early stories existed to give warnings and instruction, and to record history for future generations.

Storytelling was discovered early in our development as a civilization. And because of its effectiveness in advancing that civilization, it continues to this day.

Image courtesy of KlausHausmann on Pixabay.

Empathy Development

Possibly the most important current element of societal advancement is empathy development. Empathy is an emotional state in which we express deep understanding for and share in the feelings of others. We recognize, relate and respond to another’s experience as if it were our own. Through empathy, people are able to create intimate knowledge of that other person, and form a meaningful bond. We support and help one another. Resulting in greater community, and less crime.

Reading encourages reflection and contemplation. Absorbed in story, readers place themselves directly into the character’s troubles, perspective, and problem-solving process. A kind of transference takes place, and the reader unconsciously takes on that character’s feelings.

Cultivating Imagination

Imagination is key to society’s advancement. Geniuses with a great deal of imagination have advanced our quality of life. But you don’t have to be a genius. In all areas of technology and our way of living, imaginative people have introduced improvements.

We all have imagination. I know many people who refuse to accept that they are creative or inventive in any way. What those people need is a boost in their undeveloped creativity. Reading can do that. It expands our minds, and opens them up to new possibilities. As you experience this through the transference mentioned above, your own creativity and innovation begin to work on their own.

Improving Relationships

The world needs more tolerance, compassion, and kindness. Reading has been shown to increase these characteristics. Understanding comes about as a result of empathy. And understanding paves the way for the above-mentioned tenets. All of these are elements of a high emotional quotient (EQ). The higher our EQ, which helps in so many ways, the more we expand these wonderful traits. But the most advantageous facet of it in the way we are featuring it here is relatability to one another. We simply get along better.

All these traits above help us to contribute to our world and become better citizens. Reading is a vital part of helping each of us add our own special aspects relating to our fellow humans. With so many benefits, you can indulge in the pleasant pastime that is reading while strengthening the society in which you live.

Copyright 2022, Monica Nelson

Coming Soon – FREE Download Day!

Mark your calendars on July 18, 2022. On this day, Mere Sense, a Memoir of Men, Migraine and the Mysteries of Being Highly Sensitive is free to download from Amazon. Be sure to use the “$0.00 to buy” link, as the Kindle Unlimited link is a paid service.

Don’t miss out!

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Fortify Your Health by Reading

Over the last few years, I tried out the old adage, an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Then I found out that that’s not necessarily true. Maybe the saying should go like this, a book a day keeps the doctor away.

Turns out there are many health benefits to reading. And reading doesn’t add calories. Let’s look at some of them.

Brain Health

Keeping your brain sharp is extremely important. It is especially important as you move into the senior years, but evidence suggests that the best approach is to keep your brain sharp throughout your life. Along with writing, and performing brain-stimulating activities (like puzzles and brain teasers), reading has been scientifically proven to improve memory.

It may play a role in deferring or diminishing, possibly even preventing, Alzheimer’s disease. While science is not ready to declare definitively that reading prevents Alzheimer’s, there is enough anecdotal evidence for scientists to start studying it. What is known is that increased physical activity, blood pressure control, and cognitive training (which reading falls under) is the best plan of action so far for treating the disease.

Reading also increases a person’s empathy. The part of the brain that controls your empathetic response is called the supramarginal gyrus. If we need to make quick decisions or this part of the brain is damaged, our empathetic response goes down. But science has proven that reading fiction has a positive effect on increasing a person’s cognitive empathy.

Image courtesy of Alterfines on Pixabay.

Mental Health

There are many mental health benefits of reading. Let’s start with depression. Reading has been shown to decrease depression. Self-help books are particularly invaluable in decreasing depression.

We have all experienced more stress than we care to acknowledge over the last couple of years. Reading helps us to cut that down, and deal with the remaining with much more confidence. I don’t have to tell you how this can increase your quality of life, reducing stress can also have some surprising positive effects. For instance, increased stress has been found to accelerate aging of your immune system.

Reading, especially fiction, also has a positive influence on our social skills. As we read and increase our empathy, we develop tolerance toward groups different from ourselves. It dissipates the fear that we harbor toward people we do not understand because it opens a lens into their lives.

Better communication is also a byproduct of reading as it teaches us how to resolve our issues through the examples of problem-solving presented in literature. It exposes us to new language, new words, and new combinations of the two, increasing our overall communication skills.

Better social skills and communication help us live better in the world, which helps bolster our mental health.

General Health

My husband and I make it a practice to read before bed. It is a great way to cast off the cares of the day, immerse ourselves in a different world, and settle our minds to be able to easily fall asleep.

Reading has been shown to lower blood pressure and heart rate. Who cannot benefit from that?

If living a longer life is your goal, start reading. According to this study that compared book readers to non-book readers over a period of 12 years, the readers showed a 20% lower risk of mortality with a 4-month advantage.

A book-a-day may indeed keep the doctor away. With so many health benefits for the practice of reading, you will want to add it to your self-care regimen.

Copyright 2022, Monica Nelson

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Reading for Personal Power – The Three Realms that Boost Your Potential

What is your most powerful tool for development, advancement, and gaining a competitive advantage? The answer is so simple and yet so profound – reading. It’s the secret that keeps on giving.

Development

Brain Power. If you want to develop yourself into the best that you can be, your first step is with your brain. Reading strengthens your brain power.

Writing Skills. Reading fosters better writing skills. Your vocabulary increases. You gain better comprehension. The world of good writing rubs off as you enjoy a great read. You can’t help but pick up better skills simply by exposure to them.

Life Knowledge. Reading, particularly good novels, puts you into different situations and conflicts with resolution. You find solutions that you can apply to your own life. Reading teaches life lessons. Novels are extraordinary tools that teach through the power of story.

Open-Mindedness and Inclusivity. Lately, we as a society have become very aware of how much we need these traits. Open-mindedness leads to compassion, which leads to tolerance, which leads to acceptance and inclusivity. Reading opens the mind to worlds we don’t know and puts us into the minds of people who are different from us.

Career Advancement

Enhanced Empathy. Whether you are in business for yourself, or building a fabulous career, empathy skills are necessary to advancing your goals. Business is all about the customer. The customer drives success, and empathizing with that customer is vital to achieving that goal. Reading can help strengthen the empathy you already possess.

Image courtesy of Geralt (Gerd Altmann) on Pixabay.

Potent Communication Skills. As we saw in Writing Skills above, reading helps move our penned skills forward. It also helps us strengthen our verbal skills. As we bolster these two areas of communication, that connection becomes more effective. We learn to converse with each other in ways that bring true understanding.

Augmented Imagination. Reading compels growth in the skill of making connections between different ideas. As you pull pieces of information together in this way, they stretch the imagination to form a cohesive picture. Bringing forth new solutions to old problems.

Gaining a Competitive Edge

Focus and Concentration.  For all its contribution to advancement, technology has one very dark side. We have become obsessed with the interaction and increased pace of life it brings. We are lazy, letting the technology do everything for us. Reading allows us to slow our world down. We can take the time we need to assimilate what we are learning. This process bolsters focus and concentration, two important elements of personal power lost in an addiction to technology.

Memory Enhancer. Novels contain many details that you must remember so that you understand the story. Memory is like a muscle. When you use it, you build it into a powerhouse. Working puzzles and other brain teasers bring a similar effect, but why not enjoy the delight of reading while increasing your memory skills at the same time?

Improves analytical skills. Analytical reading means to analyze the information you read critically in order to make appropriate decisions based on that information. As you analyze what you read, the result is better critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

If increasing your personal growth and power is high on your priority list, the easiest way to start is to include reading on a daily basis. With so many benefits, what have you got to lose?

Copyright 2022, Monica Nelson

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The Entertainment Value of Reading – Three Compelling Reasons

In our series, we’re going through the many advantages to reading, starting with the most obvious and the least valuable. That doesn’t mean that it is not important.

In our technological world, there are many ways to entertain yourself. Television stories, movies, videos on the Internet. So, why bother with the old-fashioned practice of reading it yourself?

Here are three compelling reasons to choose the latter.

When You Don’t Want to Be Lazy

Sitting in front of a screen of any kind, you take in the visions in front of you with little effort on your part. You participate only through the actual watching of the story before you. It is fleeting.

It doesn’t have time to sink in. You leave your seat when it’s done having expended very little effort.

Image courtesy of StockSnap on Pixabay.

I enjoy a good movie, but I am fully aware of how little I participated in the interaction between myself and the story. Reading requires you to immerse yourself in an active way. It is more of a communion between the story and myself.

When You Want to Highlight Passages for Later Reference

I admit it. I am a highlighter. I read for enjoyment, but I also read to learn. When I come across a point that really resonates with me, I want to be able to refer back to it. I highlight and paper-clip it in my book. Easy retrieval.

I can retain points from other sources but I have to use paper or an electronic means of recording that information. Then I have to store it somewhere that I can remember where I put it. Remember is the key. I have an active brain that I stuff with massive amounts of data. Remembering where I can access a key point in the future becomes much easier when I can associate it with the title of the book I found it in.

When You Want to Kick Back and Slow Your Life Pace

Modern life can roar along at 100 mph. We are constantly going here and there, and taking care of the many obligations that our world demands of us. With little relaxation time. When was the last time you took a book outside and sat under a tree reading? Or, when it’s cold outside, threw a blanket around you, cup of tea or cocoa beside you, and cozied into a fluffy chair to read?

When you did, were you aware of the amazing relaxation that that activity presents? When you transport yourself into the world of reading, all cares get put aside for a few short hours. Sure, you can do this with other activities, such as sports or crafts, etc. But slipping into a different world gives you the dual benefit of leaving your own behind for a while at the same time sending you on an adventure of your choosing. What could be better?

Reading as a form of entertainment has been pushed aside in our modern way of life. Maybe it’s time to restore it to its rightful place. These three reasons are great motivators to do just that.

Copyright 2022, Monica Nelson

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