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  • Writer's pictureCharles Pennefather

Dealing with the lockdown, step 2: read

Updated: May 7, 2020

Charles Pennefather
How to deal with the lockdown by Charles Pennefather

The first article in this series dealt with exercise. You can read about it here.

Since we’ve dealt with the requirements of the body yesterday, today we’re going to look at giving your mind some exercise. Reading is like looking out a window – but that window is nowhere near you physically, because the right words can paint a beautifully vivid image.

There are thousands of books out there, and although I know it seems like most of them have made it to the ‘New York Times Bestseller List’, you need to start somewhere. Choose whether you want to start with a work of fiction or a non-fiction one, and take it a page at a time. If you get bored, go read another book and return to this one later. Yes, it is common for some people to read three or four books at the same time.

Once you’ve decided on what side of the fence you’d like to be, fiction or non-fiction, there’s another set of decisions to be made. Fantasy or thriller? Crime? Graphic novels? If you’re talking non-fiction, it gets a little easier: if you have a passion for gardening or fast cars, just pick a magazine about either and get to it. Just remember that self-help books usually help the author of said book the most.

Oh, and don’t go wondering whether the neighbourhood bookstore is open, or if Amazon can deliver a book to you. You’re reading this online, aren't you? There are a host of services that allow you to learn about new things, like Pocket. Ebooks can be purchased and read on your eReader, tablet, or mobile phone. If you can’t find a particular title, approach a friend (like me) wise in the ways of, er, purchasing books, and ask if they can help you find what you’re looking for.

For those of you with children, this is an opportunity you have to steer your children into learning through reading. Not the kind of learning that is forced down their throats by teachers on a time limit and that rewards them with marks, but the kind that leads them down a rabbit hole into worlds that are endlessly fascinating. The kind that people seek simply out of interest, and for no tangible reward other than self satisfaction.

Make the effort to read fewer things on social media, and more on reputable websites and in books. You can still broaden your horizons from the comfort of your house. This lockdown, try to work on narrowing your waist and broadening your mind, instead of the other way around.

For step 3, please click here.

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