Your parents were right when they told you to open a book.

“The experience of being immersed or engaged while reading a story is called narrative absorption and serves as more than an innately pleasurable experience—it can also enhance our sense of wellbeing. Researchers believe that mentally transporting ourselves away from our physical surroundings can provide an escape or opportunity for meaningful contemplation.

Reading not only provides these opportunities, but it also helps us make sense of our worlds. In one neuroimaging study, participants who read more narrative fiction had greater activation of parts of the prefrontal cortex involved in perspective-taking when reading text containing social context. This greater activation may partially explain the correlation between lifetime reading and the ability to understand how people are thinking.”

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