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  • Mental Health Awareness Week - FVA's Alison reads for mental wellbeing

    Created: 08/05/2024
    News/Events Category: FVA News
    This item will show under the following categories: Health and Social Care  

    Name: Alison Fordyce
    Role: Senior Graphic Designer


    Reading a good book helps me with mental health and wellbeing. I become completely engrossed by the story, so much so, that I feel as if I’ve fallen through the pages and I am “in” the story. The author’s words form pictures in my head and I experience the emotions of the characters and my own anxieties, stresses and frustrations of the day are forgotten. It feels good to step away from real life for a short time. When I return, the things that had been on my mind don’t seem as important and become easier to deal with.

    My mother was an English teacher who believed that reading was one of the best ways for children to learn and develop their minds. There’s never been a time when I’ve not had a selection of goods book lying around just waiting to be read. The first book I remember reading – on my own - was Topsy and Turvey (the story about an inquisitive kitten and a meddlesome puppy). In 1977 the comic 2000AD came out, and wow,what a fabulous introduction to the world of science fiction. I’ve had life-long love for both cats and science fiction – I guess what they say is true. “What you’re exposed to as a child really does influence your later life!”

    When I read, my own anxieties, stresses and frustrations are forgotten.

    Being able to remove myself from my everyday concerns and routines feels liberating. Becoming involved with the characters and engrossed by the twists and turns of the story’s plot is enjoyable and addictive, so much so that I’ll often find myself thinking, “I’ll just read for another few minutes to see what happens” and then find those few  minutes turned out to be half an hour – time passes quickly when I’m hooked on a great story.

    Books can be expensive, but there are lots of free book libraries at supermarkets, churches, and some community banks, so you don’t need to buy a new book to see if you enjoy the way that specific author has written about the subject.

    I normally find that once you’ve read a book and are enthused about it, when you speak to other people about “this great book I’ve just read” the chances are they will be interested because they’ll want to read it too, or, they’ve already read it and are eager to discuss it with you!

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