Reading is important.
Remember the days before you had kids when you could lay in bed in the morning and read a good book? Or before you fell asleep at night. Or in the middle of the day!
Well, it seems motherhood has a way of filling up our time. Our time is filled up with all sorts of good things like smushy kisses, dinosaur tails, endless snacks, and answering a gazillion questions. And I wouldn’t trade all that for anything.
However, reading is something we should always make time for. Why? That’s what we’re here to discuss. While I believe there are countless benefits to reading, right now I’m going to explain the top 5 reasons why reading is important for busy moms. Make sure you read number five. That’s the big one.
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1- So Your Imagination Can Keep Up With Your Kids
It’s no secret that the world of childhood whimsy seems to fade as we get older. But really… why does this have to be?
I was talking with a group of friends the other night, and we were all so sad that there seemed to be such generational gaps. Kids don’t seem to know how to relate to adults, adults don’t seem to know how to relate to kids, and don’t even get me started on how teenagers seem to think seniors are a foreign object.
I believe reading is one fix for this. Reading keeps our imagination active, which can keep us plugged into childhood. As we read, we imagine vivid pictures in our minds. It’s really spectacular, if you think about it. When we pick up a book to read, we all become visual directors as the story plays out in our imaginations.
Reading books that appeal to multiple generations will tune us in to what other age groups are thinking, feeling… and imagining.
Recently, I’ve read a couple books intended for a younger audience with my kids. This was such a gift to all of us. We particularly enjoyed Charlotte’s Web. Together we sat on the couch and giggled as we imagined Wilbur running, jumping, and trying to perform tricks to live up to the words Charlotte used to describe him.
If you want to read with your kids and activate your imagination… start with Charlotte’s Web! It should be on every bookshelf.
2- Focus and Memory.
Moms, please tell me I’m not alone in the memory loss/focus impairment area. I really believe that having kids sucks some brain power out of us. For quite a while, I was content to let it happen. Not that I liked it, but I figured… what can I really do?
Here’s the straight up truth. I find that if I power down the screens (I’m talking about you, iPhone, with your facebook, instagram, and pinterest apps that make it so easy to zone out), and pick up a book, my mind feels less frenzied.
Frenzied really is the best term for it. You know the feeling. Lack of sleep. Overwhelm at all the things on the to-do list. So what’s the easiest thing to do? Turn on our screens to try and shut out the chaos. But when we do that, we’re not doing ourselves any favors.
When you’re in this place of overwhelm, make a healthier choice. Get lost in a novel (Like this novel, “Small Great Things). Or, pick up a book that can help you put certain parts of your life in order so that the frenzy can take a back seat. Try this book, “Essentialism” to help you identify what’s essential, and where you should be spending your time.Also, check out, “Girl, Wash Your Face”by Rachel Hollis for a fun, raw, transformational, read.
I think you’ll find that once you try reading more and scrolling less, you’ll agree with me that reading is important for moms. Because otherwise, the lack of sleep and stress will win. Don’t let it win!
3- Cheap Entertainment
It’s so easy to forget that, as moms, we should still be entitled to a little entertainment. Another thing about being a mom is that any spare cash you used to have for entertainment has likely left the building. Go to the library, or a second-hand bookstore, and you’ll find hours of entertainment at your fingertips.
4- Stress Reduction.
This is is similar to the whole “frenzied” thing. But in addition to increasing your focus and memory, reading is an amazing stress reliever. I don’t need to tell you how valuable this is.
Do yourself a favor and fill the bathtub. Add some bubbles, salts, oils, put the lights down low, take your book and spend an hour relaxing. Try this book, “Redeeming Love” by Francine Rivers. So good, and perfect for when you’re enjoying some quiet time.
This is one of my favorite things to do. If I could noise proof my bathroom so I couldn’t hear the kids downstairs, I would do it. But I can’t, so ear plugs work good.
5- Reading Has the Potential to Impact Who You Are.
I have saved the most important, and the most beautiful, for last. Reading is important, and this is the biggest proof of that.
Every time you hold a book in your hands and start reading, there is potential that who you are will evolve. This is what I love most about reading. There is so much in this world that we haven’t learned yet, but have the opportunity and potential to learn.
When you’re a reader, you’re likely not stagnant in life. I would bet that if you’re a reader, your mind is constantly working, learning, and digging deeper. When you’re a reader, you want to know more and grow more. Reading is one of the most important things to help me feel like I’m not stuck.
There have been many books that have had a really big impact on who I am as a person. I’ll do a bigger post on those in the near future. For now, I’ll let you in on just a couple books that have impacted me in a big way.
“Blue Like Jazz”, by Donald Miller, was huge for shifting how I thought. It was such an amazing read. I want to say it was a light read, because it was so easy to get lost in it. But more than that, it was a deep read. It caused me to think about my existence, and what I am here for.
Another great book was “The Road Back To You,” by Ian Morgan Cron. It’s a book on the enneagram, which is an amazing personality-type tool. It was so helpful to gain a better understanding of the people around me… and even more so, me!
Reading is Important for Moms.
I think you can see why reading is so important. Moms need imagination. Reading provides that. Moms need focus, clarity, and a memory that’s not failing. Reading provides that. Moms need cheap entertainment. Reading provides that. Moms need less stress, and ways to cope with stress. Reading provides that.
Most of all, Moms need to know that they are NEVER done growing. Reading provides endless resources to support moms on that quest for growth.
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