There are times when sleep won’t come. Instead of lying there and staring at my ceiling, I find that reading or writing quiets my mind. Writing is a creative way to express one’s own feelings. Not only can it help us find a better perspective, but as we write, memories buried deep in our minds may surface. Writing allows us to express our innermost selves, to give feet and form to the thoughts flying about our brain. When writing, we can create our own private world, untouched by the chaos and havoc that dominates the real world. Sometimes, we may write something so creative that we want to share it with others. And the best thing of all? The more we write, the better our writing becomes.
On the other hand, reading exercises our mind. It can lead us to places that we’ve never been before and introduce us to new ways of thinking. Plus, reading has many cognitive benefits! Studies show that reading can actually improve our focus and improve our memory. Not only that, but it can broaden your vocabulary! I don’t know about you, but I love the thought of incorporating new words into my daily vocabulary. Another great benefit of reading? It’s quiet and relaxing and solitary. In the other words, the perfect way to unwind after a long, stressful day.
As we boomers go about our daily routines, don’t forget to make some time for reading and writing. A lot has changed in the past decade, but one thing that hasn’t changed is the power of words. So, if I may—the next time you find yourself unable to sleep, try your hand at reading or writing. Allow the wings of inspiration to carry you to worlds beyond this one. Sometimes, living life to the fullest means spending time between the pages of a good book.
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Originally published October 17, 2023