1) BOOKS MAKE YOU SMARTER (Mathematically)
When I was earning my driver’s license, I had maybe 3 months of experience driving. My dad had 25+ years. If is teaches me even 5% of what he knows, I now have knowledge from an extra 1.5 years of driving without having to spend the time myself.
The same happens with books.
When you read a book, you are often getting the highlights from decades of knowledge on a particular subject. A few years ago, I was a business infant. Chip and Dan Heath “taught” me the best of what they’d learned in a dozen years of research and practical experience.
Again, even if you only retain 5% of that book, you get a couple years older for maybe 2 weeks of reading.
I’ll take that trade.
2) BOOKS MAKE YOU MORE OPEN-MINDED
When I went to college, I met my first atheist.
“Oh, I learned about these guys in church,” I thought. “I hope I don’t get burned from the pure scorn and hell fire which is sure to come from his mouth.”
He was nice.
Guess what else?
We had thoughtful discussions about God, religion, and human nature that didn’t involve one ounce of brimstone.
A book, more or less, is the viewpoint of one person in one point in time. Better still, that viewpoint is stripped from all racial, gender, or theological differences. It’s just words on a page. You can either accept them or not.
The more you read, the more chance you have to understand one new human being.
And that, I’m starting to think, is the whole point.
3) BOOKS MAKE YOU MORE CREATIVE
Everything is an analogy. WWII is like the restaurant industry is like bowling is like puppy dogs is like answering a question here.
James Dyson (yes, the vacuum cleaner guy) came up with his big idea for a better unit from a sawmill. Thank God he didn’t 9 million internet gurus saying “stay in your niche!” at the time.
No, Dyson collected the dots and then connected the dots. Books give you more dots. Sad dots, happy dots, and smart dots.
If you collect the dot of animation, you get to be an expert. If you connect that dot with the storytelling dot, you get to be Pixar.
Always be Pixar.