5 Reasons Why Books Changed My Life

My story starts out this way: When I was still a kid, my parents brought me to a library in Saudi Arabia and there I discovered the magical world of books. From talking animals to heart-stopping adventures, I devoured every story, gasped at each twist, and loved and hated so many fictional characters as if they were real ones.

But aside from teaching me better writing, critical thinking, and making me look smart by default whenever I have a book in hand, books gifted me with so many other things that I am grateful for.

Books gave me companionship.

We all have our ups and downs, and usually in my downs I just want to stay at home and read a book.

And books get me through those terrible days. With books I don’t really feel alone. I’m with the characters in their journey inside this wide, imaginative world, I know, feel, and understand their thoughts and emotions and what they’re going through. I know it’s only fictional, but in that moment I’m immersed in a book it’s very real to me, and when it ends I feel like I’ve just come home from a very real adventure, and the world is never quite the same again. Even if it’s a short escape from life, I already feel a bit better.

Unless it’s the first in a series and ends in a cliffhanger, of course. Then I just scream and yell and violently wait until the release of the next book.

Books kept me away from dangerous vices.

Aside from books keeping me company, books also kept me away from vices such as smoking, doing drugs, or alcoholism (although I admittedly had my fair share of drunken moments because college, man). I admit that if I didn’t have books I might have done those things instead. I know I’ve been tempted sometimes but never actually tried it.

Because instead of searching for those vices to relieve my stress, I reached for a book because I knew they were there for me. Reading gives me the same feeling of escapism from troubles, and at the same time I learn new words, get immersed in a new story, and keep my imagination alive and well.

Well, technically, I’m addicted to books. But that’s not really wrong, is it?

Books taught me awareness.

When you’re a reader, you get into the minds of the characters in that book. And if the character is written particularly well, then you can relate to them and learn to care about them. And that’s part of what makes books so important. I may not be the same race, gender, or nationality of the characters, but I can feel the things they feel, I understand the things they go through, I see the humanity in them and realize, time and again, that we are all the same. We are all people with thoughts and insecurities and emotions and beliefs, and when I think of it that way, it’s easier to accept and welcome people as they are. And it’s easy to fight for their right to be human beings when people treat them as less than that.

Unless you’re a Neo-Nazi. Then you can get out of my planet, please.

Books made me dream.

I have a hyperactive imagination. Whenever I see something I end up coming up with a million possibilities in my head, of different beginnings and endings and everything in between. And I don’t necessarily think it’s wrong; in fact, I believe it’s great to nurture that imagination because it turns into creativity, and then sometimes, something great comes from it.

Books keep that creativity inside me active. I can draw and create things because of the books I read. I explore new avenues in my own writing because books inspire me to. And most importantly, books told me that it’s okay to dream because sometimes I can turn that dream into a reality.

Books made me a better person.

There are books that entertain, frustrate, or make you laugh out loud. Then there are those that strike a chord in you and then suddenly you’re not the same person anymore. The words in those books mold you into someone better. Books taught me how to love, and how to continue on loving even when you’ve just lost someone else’s love. Books opened my eyes to issues of race, tolerance, and things that are worth fighting for. Books reminded me that no matter who I am or where I come from, I can make the world a better place in the best way I know how.

Words have power. That’s why books hold an immense power over their readers. And, if written just right, if written in a way that strikes at the core of millions and millions of people, books can just change the world. I know they definitely changed mine.

How have books changed your life? Let me know in the comments below!

12 Comments on 5 Reasons Why Books Changed My life

  1. Demi
    November 28, 2016 at 6:22 am (7 months ago)

    Hi Chiqui, you really have a strong message here and you are very right. Books can be a good way to get insight and guidance. I have experienced myself how peaceful it feels when you get deep into the words and forget all the worries!

    Reply
    • Chiqui
      November 28, 2016 at 7:23 am (7 months ago)

      Thanks, I’m glad you like it! And yeah, that’s one of my favorite aspects of books I think! Just lose yourself in an imaginary world for a while and relax and forget about the real world!

      Reply
    • Chiqui
      November 28, 2016 at 7:24 am (7 months ago)

      Aww thanks so much! I probably would be half as empathetic as I am without books LOL. So glad you agree with me, thanks for stopping by! 🙂

      Reply
  2. Cassie
    November 30, 2016 at 8:28 pm (7 months ago)

    My favorite is definitely that books taught you awareness, how true is this? You get to see world outside of your own and then grow empathy for those worlds. Loved this list.

    Reply
    • Chiqui
      December 1, 2016 at 6:58 am (7 months ago)

      Thank you! And yeah definitely true, I wouldn’t have understood where others were coming from had I not read books reflecting their thoughts and emotions. Glad you like the list!

      Reply
  3. Laura @ Beautiful Books
    December 3, 2016 at 1:53 am (7 months ago)

    I always tell people that in a way books saved my life, which sounds super dramatic and all but it’s still true. When I was at my lowest books were there, so I love your post about how books personally changed you. I agree on the fact that they not only made me a better person, but made me the person I am today.
    Laura @ Beautiful Books recently posted…Monthly Wrap Up | November 2016My Profile

    Reply
    • Chiqui
      December 3, 2016 at 3:13 am (7 months ago)

      I think a lot of people who read would agree with you and understand how you feel when you say books saved your life! I’m glad books influenced you as much as they did me too, it feels great knowing there are other people who feel the way I do about books! 🙂

      Reply
  4. Uma @ Books.Bags.Burgers.
    December 8, 2016 at 10:55 am (7 months ago)

    This is such a beautiful post! I agree that books do change us all..for the better! I agree with all the points! Growing up as an only child, books were my bestest companions..They got me through a lot of stuff and still do! It really felt good to read this post :)Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
    • Chiqui
      December 9, 2016 at 9:36 am (7 months ago)

      Aah thank you I’m so glad you like and can relate to it! I can totally understand books being companions and helping with a lot of stuff since I’m that way too~ Thanks for commenting! 🙂

      Reply
  5. Alise
    December 19, 2016 at 6:29 pm (6 months ago)

    I can definitely relate to each and every one of these. I’m an only child and my parents kind of left me to entertain myself which is why I think I read so much. It was also great to get out of sucky real life into amazing fictional worlds too. I also agree that it kept me out of sketchy situations because I was always too busy reading or being an introvert to get involved in any of that xD Great post!
    Alise recently posted…5 Things About The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee AhdiehMy Profile

    Reply
    • Chiqui
      December 20, 2016 at 11:04 am (6 months ago)

      Aww that seems to be true for people who are an only child! My best friend is a reader too and she’s an only child. 🙂 And yeah, definitely! Sometimes when I don’t want to bother with the real world, reading a good fantasy or just fluffy contemporary is the greatest. Thank you so much for dropping by!

      Reply

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