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The simple pleasures of fall include reading

Posted September 17, 2014 in Advice Column, Windsor Heights

As we turn the calendar to September, a number of changes begin to take place. When you begin to feel that first crisp breeze, you know that summer is gone, and fall is in the air. Every season has its upside; however, autumn has a uniqueness of beauty. The world turns into a canvas with nature’s paintbrush of vibrant color.

There are so many ways to enjoy the fall season. Walking outside reveals so much to take in. As you walk, take time to absorb all the beauty that surrounds you. The cover of red, yellow and orange leaves is so captivating. During the fall, our taste buds are bombarded by all things pumpkin. From lattes to ales, pies to pancakes, everything gets a delicious taste of pumpkin — something pumpkin for everyone to enjoy.

One of my personal favorites during the fall season is reading. The simple pleasure of sitting outside with a good book, surrounded by the beauty, the cooler temperatures, and getting lost in a character of the story is so very relaxing.

The truth is that reading books can be more than entertainment.  Research has shown that reading is a very effective way to overcome stress. Researcher Dr. David Lewis said “It really doesn’t matter what book you read. By losing yourself in a thoroughly engrossing book you can escape from the worries and stresses of the everyday world and spend a while exploring the domain of the author’s imagination. “

Reading may help you sleep better. Reading before bed may help calm your mind and prepare your body for sleep. If possible, read while lying in bed so that as you begin to get sleepy you merely turn off the light and out you go.

Reading contributes to a healthier brain. The brain is an organ just like every other organ in the body; if it’s not used, the brain starts to deteriorate. Just as physical activity strengthens our muscles, bones, heart and lungs, intellectual activity strengthens the brain. Reading the newspaper, writing letters, attending a play or playing games are all simple activities that keep the brain stimulated and challenged.

So go ahead, grab a cup of warm apple cider, get a comfortable chair, and let yourself get caught up in a compelling story or swept away by a powerful character — it’s good for you.

Information provided by Susan Ray, executive director, The Reserve Urbandale, 2727 82nd Place, Urbandale, 515-727-5927.





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