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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Reading Groups: The Beginning of Beautiful Friendships

When you commit to becoming a part of a reading group/book club, you may find that active participation can be time-consuming. There is the time spent reading the selected book and author biographies, staying in touch with members and updating your group's social media pages, the actual meetings for discussion, as well as researching books for future selections.

During this process, you will spend a fair amount of time with the individuals that comprise your group. First, recognize that this is potentially quality time. And for many members who may be bogged down with work, parenting, household chores, volunteer projects, and many other responsibilities- this may be the only time they have to dedicate for themselves.

Through reading, you discover new cultures, religions and viewpoints, continually enhancing your own life and self-development. As part of a group, you experience this growth and change together, which can create a unique bond among your members. As you become more comfortable with the others, you may find yourself beginning to share details of your own life and difficulties you are facing.

Although reading is the anchor that centers the group, socializing is an important aspect of meetings. Once you learn more about each member, you will have a better understanding of his/her viewpoint on the reading material.

With the continued success of your group, members will likely encounter a range of life experiences- graduations, births, career or occupation changes, and even suffering the loss of loved ones. One of the many benefits of being a part of a group is that you will not face these moments alone. Hopefully with time, you will not only call your fellow book club members "readers" but also "friends."

Happy Reading!

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