Filipino Fridays is a weekly meme that has become a tradition leading up to the Filipino Reader Conference. I won’t be in Manila during the event so I can only participate through this virtual meme. This week’s topic:
How do you think has reading changed your life? Please share with at most five significant ways that will show how reading has influenced your life. These could be in terms of personality, career, studies, and other parts of your life this influence has taken place. 😀
Reading has given me a default activity. I’ve written a blog post before about how books are my constant, about how I may like certain things at any given point in time but that always fades while I will always be a reader. If I’m bored or can’t think of what to do, I can always just pick up a book. Actually in whatever mood I’m in, I can always just read a book.
Reading keeps me steady. There have been times in my life when I’ve been in difficult situations and I felt like reading and book blogging have helped keep me grounded. For example, I had a tough time adjusting to living abroad on my own, when I first moved to Singapore more than three years ago. And I really wouldn’t have known what I would have done if I didn’t have books to read and the book blogging community to relate to. Sometimes when I had a bad day at work or I’m unhappy for some reason, I just tweet and say “I need a good book, stat.” and I would get recommendations. And when I read a book that’s able to take me away from my current situation, it really helps keep me on my feet when I have to face reality.
Reading has led me to book blogging and has helped me make friends. Of course I’m talking about all the book friends I’ve made through reading communities and the book blogosphere. Our love of the written word connects us all. Even better is when we find people who love the same kind of books that we do. In another one of my previous posts, I mentioned that book blogging is more than just a hobby, it’s a lifestyle. So much thought, time and effort goes into maintaining a book blog, and the social media sites connected to it, that it’s much more fitting to describe it as a lifestyle.
I have learned to break my boundaries because of reading. This statement can be interpreted in many ways, such as how I’ve learned to explore genres that I wouldn’t have tried if not for recommendations from trusted authors and bloggers. Or how I’ve been able to explore and travel to other worlds, both real and fictional, through the books that I’ve read. I just like how reading enables us to be more open to experiences.
Reading helps me lose myself but also helps me find myself. I’m an escapist reader so I love losing myself in a good book. But even if the characters in the book that I’m reading are in situations that I would never find myself in, there are still instances where I could totally relate to what they’re thinking or feeling. Certain lines or paragraphs would make me go, “YES! Exactly this!” So in a way, I feel like I find parts of myself in the books that I read.
I can go on and on about this topic but the prompt says maximum of five so I’ll stop here. What about the rest of you, how has reading changed your life? You don’t have to be a Filipino reader to share your thoughts on this topic. 🙂