Does Reading Reduce Stress? – Sailing Away From Stress

I am sure you would like to know how reading is connected to stress relief because otherwise, you wouldn’t be reading this article. Does reading reduce stress? How? Does it even possible?

What is reading for me and maybe for you too? 

Does Reading Reduce Stress?Reading is my passion and, of course, it reduces stress because after this activity I always feel calmer and more focused. More relaxed…

For me, reading is exploring new worlds, sailing away into a fantasy world that is sometimes too different from the world we live in. Sailing away from stress.

I think you can agree that your life sometimes is too stressful and that you need to hide a little while from it. Then you return stronger, more relaxed and ready to face new challenges and maybe change your life for the better.

Maybe that is one of the reasons I read. Maybe I just want to hide, run away. Some years ago I thought that maybe I love to read books because I want to escape from my life. I don’t think that anymore. 

Read and Be Yourself

Does Reading Reduce Stress

Actually, reading is not running away from problems and your life, it is just changed perspective. When you read, you are in the present moment, yes, maybe in a different world, but at that moment you are being yourself.

When you are under stress, you are not in the present moment, you don’t acknowledge yourself. In my opinion, that is running away from yourself. 

It is not natural to feel stress every day, so you need to do everything you could to relieve stress in a natural and safe way. If reading a book reduces stress, why wouldn’t you want to try? 

Does Reading Reduce Stress? Really?

Yes, and it is completely true (it is not just me saying that). There is even research about it. 

Outside stressors don’t bother me at the time I read, so reading for me is a distraction from stress, but it is not just that, it is also a journey to the imaginary world. When I read, of course, I can’t think about things that I feel stressed about. Reading requires my full concentration and attention, it is like my mind takes a holiday (even if it just some minutes or hours). 

Does Reading Reduce Stress?

I have a vivid imagination so I wouldn’t be surprised that it is only me thinking and feeling like that. 🙂 However, looks like other people feel like that too and University Sussex research proves it. It is good to know that I am not just imagining things and other people think similar. 

More About Study

According to research, stress levels of participants were increased with different exercises, then they were tested with typical methods of relaxation such as listening to music, taking a walk and others. 

This study showed that reading is the best way to relax because just 6 minutes of reading reduce stress levels by up to 68 %. Isn’t that fast? 

 Dr.Lewis, cognitive neuropsychologist, said that reading is the ultimate relaxation, it stimulates your creativity and you can escape from stresses. How amazing is that? How similar his words are to my feelings and thoughts!

In 2009 they found out something I knew a long time ago and maybe you too.

After reading about this research I wanted to read books more and more, but you know I need to write too.

It’s not for everyone…

Reading really reduces stress, however, it looks like it doesn’t help everyone. At least two persons said to me that for them reading is stressful. Maybe they are reading the news and that makes them worried and stressful. Actually, me too, so I usually avoid reading the news. I don’t know why reading can’t help them with stress relief. What about you?

What to Read for Stress Relief?

Does Reading Reduce Stress?Actually, you can be absolutely sure that it doesn’t matter what you read because the most important thing is that you are enjoying the book you read.

It doesn’t need to be self-help books about stress management or something like that. It can be any genre you like, for example, science fiction, fantasy (my favorite one) or romance novels etc. Maybe even poetry. 

Just choose what you like and love. Let’s reduce the stress that is holding you captive!

Conclusion

Does reading reduce stressAs you know right now, reading really reduces stress and even research shows that. Of course, it can’t be true for everyone, because we all are different. 

What about you? Is it true for you that reading reduces stress? Does reading is relaxing for you? Tell me how it is. What is your favorite book to read for stress relief? Maybe you love to reread. What kind of books are you usually reading to reduce stress?

If you want to write comments, suggestions or questions, you can do that below this post. I would love to hear from you and discuss how reading helps you to manage stress.


If you want to know more how reading reduces stress, CLICK HERE today and find out.

I like to hear from the readers, so please leave me a comment below to let me know if this article helped you.

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Thank you! Until next time, my dear reader!

Linda Mo

Founder of How To Reduce Stress Naturally 



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14 Comments

  1. hi Linda, I totally agree with your article that reading reduces stress. Maybe I belong to the school of thought that benefits from reading. Since I was young, reading was one of my relaxation rituals. My favorite genre is history. It just gives me absolute joy when I read something that actually happened and my mind recreates it as if I was actually witnessing it. So there, thanks for this great article. I can totally relate =)

    • Linda Mo

      Hi, JR!
      Thank you for your comment! I am really glad you like it. It was a great pleasure to write about something I really enjoy.
      Nice to meet you and it’s really nice to talk to somebody who enjoys reading as much as me. Reading helped me a lot in the past to reduce stress.
      I liked history a lot(history novels, non-fiction etc.), I still like history, but not that much as before. Yes, when I reading something related to history, I have this feeling like I am living at that time and witnessing everything. Now I like more fantasy and science fiction. I guess I want to explore something different than the world we live in.

  2. Craig M

    Great article. This speaks to me where I have a train ride of one hour to and from work. I used to just sit and think or look at my phone until I picked up a book. I found that I am in a better mood at work and home when I read on the train and even look forward to those two hours every day. I for one prefer history related books. I find them very interesting and does a great deal on my stress relief.

    • Linda Mo

      Thanks! It is really good that reading helps you to reduce stress. 🙂

      There was a time when I loved history related books, now I don’t like them that much. But they are still good to read from time to time.

  3. jeffrey16201

    I have experienced reading to be very relaxing, as long as I am careful what I choose to read during anxious times. I have also experienced music to be very relaxing and ease my anxiety, again you must choose the right type to experience stress and anxiety relief.

    What other types of activities could be a stress and anxiety reliever for some people, gardening is one of the best relaxing activities people who garden claim what do you think about these activities and relieving stress and anxiety?

    • Linda Mo

      Hi! Thanks for the comment!

      Of course, you need to be careful. I once read a book and became angry. Reading can also make people feel a different kind of emotions.

      I am sure for some people gardening helps, I just don’t have a lot of experience with it. Everything helps if you are focused on what you are doing and at the same time forgetting things that are stressful to you.

      You can read about my favorite stress relief tips here: https://howtoreducestressnaturally.com/2017/04/22/…. My favorite ones are reading (as you know), writing, painting, walking and meditation. Many people help exercises, music and basically, doing things they enjoy.

  4. Bea

    Reading is very relaxing for me. When I am stressed, I like reading parenting books, recycling magazines and parenting magazines and I find this really relaxing. Even if there’s so much noise around me, I still enjoy reading. There are great articles I love reading about…tech, activities for kids, vacation spots, safety online…. Some of my friends meditate and that’s how they find time to relax. So I guess it just comes down to what works. Thanks for this interesting article.

    • Linda Mo

      Hi, Bea
      Different people have different activities which work for them and help to reduce stress.
      Thank you for your comment!

  5. Great article. I know that when I have a good book in hand I always love to read and flow into a different world and simply relax. I agree with you that reading isn’t like running away from my problems, it’s more like putting my problems aside and enjoying life. I love to read because it sometimes feels like I am watching a movie, and if the book is really long then it’s like a TV series… 🙂
    Paulina

    • Linda Mo

      Hi, Paulina!
      Thank you for your comment! Yeah, reading is great and one of the best things to do and it helps to relax and let go of stress.

  6. Rob S.

    I was never much of a reader when I was young. But with the internet today I read all the time. I like to learn things and if reading helps me to relax then even better yet.
    I wouldn’t think that reading would cause stress as you mentioned. I can’t believe that only reading for six minutes reduces stress by that much.
    I totally believe that reading relaxes because sometimes it even puts me to sleep. Now that I think about it, I’ve never read this much in my life.

    • Linda Mo

      Hi, Rob! Great to hear it. 🙂 I also couldn’t believe that, and it is interesting to know. I love to read, and reading helps me in many ways. 

      Thanks! 

  7. Harjit

    Hi great post. I completely agree with you that reading does reduce stress. For me it does anyway! After a hard days work I do like to sit down in the evening in a quiet room by myself and read. I find it very relaxing and I forget about any stresses I may have.

    • Linda Mo

      Hi! It’s great that you like it. Thanks for sharing your experience! Reading is something that helped me in many situations. 

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