Anyone who’s ever gotten lost in a good book knows how easy it is to get sucked into whatever world you’re reading about, but a study from the University of Buffalo shows that’s a good thing. Researchers found reading fiction can make us less lonely by “providing a collective identity that’s easily assumed and psychologically rewarding.”
The study shows that reading satisfies our need for human connection because we don’t just feel like the characters we’re reading about, but we kind of become part of their world and even get an emotional boost from the book. We know social connections are important and it turns out, reading can mimic the effects of socializing with a group, according to researchers.
Now that doesn’t mean that you should trade in your besties for books, but this study shows that solo activities like reading and watching movies can bring the same fulfillment as interpersonal interactions. And that’s great news for introverts as well as bookworms.