The Benefits of Reading Non-Fiction
I wanted my child to be an avid reader like me. So from the very beginning, I have read or made him read age appropriate story books. But over the years, I realized that he is a reluctant reader. If I pick an engaging or a thrilling fiction for him from the collection of our books, he’d take eons to finish reading it. But when he picks a book on his own, he will always reach out for a non-fiction. So, when he tells me bits of information from How to Stay Alive: The Ultimate Survival Guide for Any Situation by Bear Grylls or The Definitive Book of Body Language by Allan & Barbara Pease with a sparkle in his eyes, so do mine. It is my son who made me realize that non-fiction books can be satisfying and engaging as well.There are endless benefits of reading non-fiction, let me share a few.
1. Non-fiction improves focus and concentration
When you are reading for learning or understanding, you are emotionally detached from your reading. You are objective and try to understand the logic and the arguments given and that makes you read with focus and concentration. I am reading The Little Book of Hygge: Danish Secrets to Happy Living by Meik Wiking. Hygge is a Danish word for a mood of coziness and comfortable conviviality with feelings of wellness and contentment. As adopting the Hygge manifesto is on my agenda, I am reading it with purpose to stay on track and avoid mindless scanning. I am making mental links and analyzing to cement the new information in my brain so that I understand and retain it better.
2. Non fiction enhances knowledge and information
Non-fiction provides you with facts and real life concepts. It feeds the mind with experiences and information. It deepens and broadens the knowledge about a wide range of new topics. Reading nonfiction can be the springboard to understanding how and whys of everything—and all these insights make you all the more powerful, emotionally as well as intellectually. I recently read The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat by Oliver Sacks and it was fascinating read about case histories and clinical analysis of patients with unique neurological disorders.
3. Non fiction is empowering
When you use facts and figures, you are more subjective and practical in your dealings with your life and people around you. It helps in expanding the thought process and allows you to form your own arguments. Reading non-fiction makes one curious to know things. It helps in improving the ability to perceive the situations and contradict ideas with your own intellect. And all this boosts confidence. The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun by Gretchen Rubin is a realistic, genuinely practical (but not easy), lifelong approach to making the constant adjustments we know we need to be our best selves.
4. Non-fiction teaches you real life lessons
Reading memoirs and biographies offer glimpses into the trials, tribulations and triumphs of notable people throughout history. Reading about their experiences deepens your understanding of the human condition and teaches you valuable life lessons, helping you avoid pitfalls and make the most of new opportunities. The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank and the life lessons it teaches about being courageous and strong despite adversities will stay with me forever.
My first love is fiction but I do read non-fiction books every and then and reading non-fiction always leave me with awe, admiration and awareness.
Do you enjoy reading Non-Fiction? Which Non-Fiction books will you recommend?
April 16, 2020 8:14 am|
I am more of non- fiction person than fiction.. read many non – fiction that reading fiction makes me hard to be on track with content
April 16, 2020 8:23 am|
Yes, I love non fiction too. I used to think that non fiction must be so boring but, in fact, I discovered that they are quite engaging. ‘Maximum City’ by Suketu Mehta was my first non fiction and I highly recommend it.
April 16, 2020 8:49 am|
Nonfiction should become part of everyone’s regular reading. You’ve mentioned the benefits already.
April 16, 2020 10:16 am|
I like to read non fiction related to History.
April 16, 2020 10:40 am|
I enjoy reading non fiction books Shilpa, and i am always interested and fascinated by these books and get to learn so much.
April 16, 2020 11:25 am|
I do enjoy reading real-life accounts and history, but I haven’t been able to enjoy self-help books much. Non-fiction helps also because of being realistic, unlike the fiction can be.
April 16, 2020 3:19 pm|
I am very poor at this category… have read so few in the last decade or so. Don’t even know where to start anymore, honestly
April 16, 2020 3:48 pm|
Might be a boy thing but my son prefers non fiction as well. I am also moving more towards non fiction. Glad you blogged on this topic.
April 16, 2020 4:05 pm|
Though I find non-fiction dry, I deliberately read many books in that genre, precisely for the reasons you have enumerated. They are really great ways to enhance one’s knowledge.
April 16, 2020 4:51 pm|
I am currently reading Anne Frank . Love your posts Shilpa .
April 16, 2020 4:51 pm|
I like to mix things up depending on how saturated my brain is. I do enjoy non-fiction but it requires an unsaturated brain. It works best for weekends.
April 16, 2020 5:03 pm|
I like both fiction and non-fiction. But my daughter likes non-fiction more. Sometimes, I read the book she recommends and we have a small discussion on it.
April 16, 2020 5:18 pm|
Though not a great fan of non-fiction, I still read some.
April 16, 2020 5:53 pm|
Good points. I actually prefer non-fiction to fiction. Stories are as real as they can get. Fiction is only when I have to escape from reality for a while!
April 16, 2020 7:08 pm|
Being a fiction lover, it hard for me to read non fiction.I have read only few non fictions. But you are right we get learn real things from them.
April 16, 2020 7:41 pm|
I find non-fiction quite difficult. At best I read a few chapters but never seem to reach the finish line.
April 16, 2020 7:46 pm|
I am wish you in this buddy. I read a lot of non fiction to gain knowledge and earnestly I really enjoy it to the core too. Fiction is less frequent for me.
April 16, 2020 8:18 pm|
Since the last few years, I started reading a lot of non-fiction books which has changed my thought process and made me a better person. Loved the article.
April 16, 2020 8:58 pm|
I don’t read a lot of non-fiction. I quite the middle ground – a fictional story built around factual events.
N is for …
April 16, 2020 9:12 pm|
When I was younger I used to think that those who read non-fiction lacked imagination . But now as an older person, I find non-fiction more rewarding….
April 17, 2020 1:33 am|
I love non-fiction books and like your son tend to gravitate towards them. I read the Happiness Project which I really enjoyed. My most recent non-fiction was a book on meditation and currently I’m reading Devil in the White City which is in the style of a novel but covers true events. I’m about half way through and loving it.
April 17, 2020 11:44 am|
I enjoy nonfiction as much as I enjoy fiction. Some books are truly inspiring and deliver life lessons in ways we can easily consume and put into action. I started reading a lot of nonfiction only after I turned 20 and I am so glad I did. My son mostly reads only non fiction too 🙂
April 18, 2020 4:38 am|
My little one is avid reader shilpa and like your son, she also enjoy non-fiction books a lot. I agree with all the points you had shared here about reading the non fiction. surly, it helps in expanding though t process and empowered our knowledge.
April 24, 2020 7:54 am|
My youngest was immovable when in jr high about reading non-fiction. Now, not so much. Loves a good drama. You just never know how taste in reading will change.
April 12, 2021 10:35 pm|
Thanks for explaining that reading about the experiences of others can give us life lessons and teach us about the human condition. Addiontlaly, you can even find non-fiction books containing inspirational religious stories if you find yourself having questions of faith or wanting to feel closer to God. Non-fiction books can be beneficial for many varying aspects of life.
January 23, 2023 12:03 pm|
I agree that non-fiction books feed the mind with information by providing facts and real-life concepts. This is the reason why I read more non-fiction books than any other genre. It expands my knowledge about real-world scenarios. I’m getting a new one this week.