Book Therapy

Posted by Lachmi Deb Roy on Sat, Jan 8, 2011  
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It has been a habit ever since my childhood days to reach out for the book shelf when ever I am feeling low. It has always helped me in dealing with life’s ups and downs. Aristotle believed that literature had healing effect. The ancient Romans also recognized there was some relationship between medicine and reading. Today, many health professionals in the United Kingdom have set up a reading-to-health scheme that helps mildly, depressed, anxious or lonely people obtain a recommended reading list from bibliotherapist. The power of books lies not in their ability to shape society and change the world, but in their ability to connect with readers. Bibliotheraphy is a powerful tool many of us use without realising it. We often recommend books to friends because we think they would like it, because they remind us of a character or the plot echoes their life. Reading books helps us understand complex human conditions and solve problems in our own life. When we identify with the character from a book, we pull some of their strength into our own life. We gain the courage and ingenuity to solve problems and face our own battles. Books are one of the most powerful tools at our disposal. We gain strength and healing wisdom from reading religious texts, but religious and self help books are not the only ones that can help us heal. Books can help you to objectify your own experience, come to a better understanding, and move on to more positive attitudes and relationships in life. Reading is an excellent way to reduce stress. Gaining knowledge through reading helps in solving problems. Writer K Anoa Monsho says, “To get the most benefit from reading, you have to read with the intention of gaining insight into your life and make positive changes based on what the books helps you discover about your self. Depending on your problem, you may work with one title over time, or read a series of books.” Reading can be a source of great hope, giving you ideas and inspiration that will relieve your stress. Biographies and rags-to-riches stories about famous people will teach how they over came their struggles. These stories also help us to overcome the regular challenges we face in our day to day life. We get several books on parenting which gives us ideas about how to bring up kids. Books can be tools for children too. Reading an appropriate book is also a wonderful way to open a dialogue with a child who is hesitant to talk. If you want to experience comfort and enjoy your reading, you need to have a reading schedule to get you started. You can pick lists of books you would like to read and then determine when you will start. One difference between simply reading a bibliotheraphy is the intention. You choose a book because you think it may solve a problem or facilitate healing. After reading a book discuss it with your friend or spouse and then ask yourself what you have learned from the book.

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