“I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a book.”

J.K. Rowling and this quote of hers changed my life forever. I was 14 years old when my mother gifted me a book to read and that book was Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. At that time, I was a plump child who focused on three things in life: eating, playing computer games, and sometimes studying for school. I was not doing anything productive. That was the reason why my parents talked me into joining drawing classes. They also gave me this book to read. That was what first set my imagination on fire.

When I first started reading that book, it was so amazing that I would not stand up in between and would finish many chapters in a single sitting. I was so excited while reading that book as the stuff in Hogwarts moved around and the pictures talked. It was just so magical!

One fine day, I came to know about a book review competition in my school. I reviewed the book I had read, and ended up getting the second prize in that competition. That further motivated me to read more. Not only that, reading gave wings to my imagination as well, which can be seen in the sketches I made. Thereafter, regardless of where I went, I always had a book in my bag.

How books changed Shlok's life

It was now easier for me to strike a conversation with people as I always had something or the other to talk about. Moreover, it was fun discussing books with friends. One of my friends suggested me to try the self-help genre for a change.

The first one of them was Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist (which wasn’t exactly a self-help book in the true sense of the word). It was an unforgettable experience. It motivated me to read many other motivational books like R. Stephen Covey‘s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Steve Chandler‘s How to Become the Person You’ve Always Wanted to be, Rhonda Byrne‘s The Secret, Dale Carnegie‘s How to Win Friends and Influence People. Reading so many books meant that I spent less time playing games and engaging in other unproductive activities that were doing no good to my skill-development process. Reading even motivated me to go to the gym to be in fine shape for achieving my goals in life.

I still tend to carry a book in my backpack, along with a pencil and a blank page (for sketching, of course). Reading improved my concentration and enhanced my imagination. From someone who struggled to find a meaning to his life, I became a person who could motivate his friends. In a nutshell, books motivated me to become a better person in many aspects of life.

That was some transformation! Do you have a similar story to tell about how you started reading, or how books changed your life for the better? If Shlok’s story motivated you to share yours, feel free to get in touch with us here.