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Do You Get Mentally Fatigued When Reading?

Discussion in 'General Book Discussion' started by -Carlos-, Dec 15, 2007.

  1. -Carlos-

    -Carlos- New Member

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    Your brain, like a muscle, just wants to throw in the towel after an x amount of reading: does this happen to you? What about starting a reading session. Regardless of how enjoyable the story is, do you always have to push yourself to start reading each time you pick up the novel? What’s the remedy? Read more…?

    Post your views/comments.
     
  2. Fantasy Moon

    Fantasy Moon kickbox

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    If you think that you're reading too much then stop reading for a few days.
     
  3. -Carlos-

    -Carlos- New Member

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    Fantasy Moon: I do not think I am reading enough.
     
  4. Bluraven

    Bluraven Member

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    Currently Reading:
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    I have the same sort of mental roadblock that needs to be pushed aside at the beginning of every reading session! I've just assumed it was due to being overly anxious to begin the book...finishing a book is something I really prize, so that's why I'm so eager to get started!

    I can't say that I've figured out how to get past this, except for to just jump in and let my mind become absorbed by the material. That seems to do it. And as for the fatigue, yeah, I get that too...if the book is less than stellar. But if its something amazingly delicious (Like the whole Harry Potter series was for me), then I have to force myself to stop reading to make time for the (so called) necessities like sleep and food! :D
     
  5. -Carlos-

    -Carlos- New Member

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    I relate to what your saying Bluraven. It's like when I was reading Stephen King's Dark Tower series I did not get mentally tired at all because I loved the story.
     
  6. giddieon

    giddieon New Member

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    my eyes go fuzzy before I get tired.... I hate it becomes really hard to see the words.... after about 2 hours or so... it is really annoying....

    there is a point though where I just can't read anymore... feels like trying to put to much stuff in a box...
     
  7. -Carlos-

    -Carlos- New Member

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    My eyes get fuzzy as well after reading for some time. :(
     
  8. jaybe

    jaybe Member

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    Reading is knackering. Even fast paced, easy to read novels - particularly bad ones.
     
  9. silverseason

    silverseason New Member

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    Usually one fiction/novel and one nonfiction.
    I find when reading something demanding, for example works by Plato or Williams James, I can keep my attentive edge for about 20-30 minutes. Then it is just as well to stop for a bit and let absorption take place.

    But a good, fast-paced novel with absorbing characters? It's hard to stay away.
     
  10. HermioneWeasley

    HermioneWeasley Member

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    Sometimes when I'm reading non stop I just get that feeling that you get after staring at a computer for too long - you face and brain feel like a stone. But that happens when the story is really interesting, and therefore I"ve been reading for a really long time. My remedy is to take a walk and get something to eat, then go back to the story.
     
  11. ElizabethACJ

    ElizabethACJ kickbox

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    I completely agree with your comment about Stephen King's Dark Tower Series, they always keep me awake...I am on Wolves of the Calla :). But the problem I find that I have is getting my reading session started....sometimes I feel that I have very little motivation to get it started. Do you find you have that problem as well?
     
  12. PsychZero

    PsychZero kickbox

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    Fantasy Moon, it's great that you brough it up, because I agree with your suggestion, it's also nice that someone mentioned that the brain is like a muscle in which it can only take so much stress until it needs time off. As a big fan of phsyiolgy and exercise science I've come to the conclussion that reading a book(aka training your body) is only useful until you start to see diminishing gains. Thus when I find it particularly difficult to pick up a book, I will pass it off for a day, or two, and supplement it by reading something lighter, or sticking with articles from nytimes.com.

    I've also tried the opposite approach, which is being suggested throughout this topic and keep pushing and pushing and pushing. Needless to say it didn't work well for me.

    Find the knack that works well for you, and don't be afraid to take a day or two off. It can lead to bigger and faster gains in the future. Although, don't use this as an excuse to keep taking days off.
     
  13. Emo17

    Emo17 New Member

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    To the op: I know exactly what you are talking about - not feeling motivated to start reading a book even though you know it will make you more intelligent, knowledgable, well rounded, et cetera, and just opting to lay back and watch mindless television instead. Or, even if I'm enjoying a book, I only really want to pay attention for so long. I believe I have an interesting take on this dilemma to share. Now, in saying what I'm about to say, I'm not suggesting you have any of my problems, but I've suffered from extreme anxiety and elements of depression for years now, and I believe that factors such as those are a big reason for at least me feeling unmotivated to start reading a book.

    Here's the interesting part. Before last summer, I hadn't been on an airplane in years. I had a really bad flight, and am a paranoid in general (to a degree), so after the flight I refused to fly anywhere for about five years. Finally, this summer, I decided I wanted to travel, so I got this drug called Klonopin prescribed to me; it's basically the same as valium, but much stronger so the doses are much less. Anyway, Klonopin is described as stricly a sedative by most doctors, but some also use it as an anti-stress agent. To my surprise, I found that when I took it at a lower dose, it (ironically enough) gave me a certain kind of new found energy. If I took four pills at once, or two every two hours over the course of four hours (four total), it would give me this new-found energy, whereas if I took two every two hours over the course of eight hours, the effects would continually double up (it's a pretty long lasting drug), and at a certain point it would actually help me go to sleep. (I'm not suggesting you try any of this if you by any chance have possession of this drug. There are different dosages for everyone, and there are different strengths of the pill. You could have .5mg pills or 2mg pills, or who knows what other strengths, you please - check with your doctor before deciding on a ***safe*** dose).

    Anyway, I found that at a lower dose it really only acted as an anti-stress agent, and even gave me energy, as opposed to making me sleepy at a higher dose. When I took a lower dose of the klonopin, or after I woke up from a long sleep due to a higher dose and only the anti-stress effect of the drug was still lingering (like on the plane for example), I found myself much more inclined to start a new book. I brought Transparent Things by Vladimir Nabokov on the plane with me, which is far from a light, entertaining novel. When I travel, I always listen to my ipod. I very rarely turn off my ipod and read a book.

    But, while on the klonopin, this anti-stress pill, not only was I extremely motivated to turn off my ipod and better my mind by reading a book, I even underlined EVERY. SINGLE. WORD. I didn't know (and there were like five a page), and asked my mom who was travelling with me if she knew the word, and for all the ones she did I would write the definition down on the page, which is also something I never do. I was also motivated and interested in talking about the book with my mom, discussing possible meanings of different sentences and passages, which I never do either.

    I'm not a psychiatrist or anything, and even the psychiatrist I was seeing at the time didn't really give me a great answer for why I reacted to the drug that way, but what I think is that it's not only, for example, the human brain only being able to handle so much reading a day. I think anything can tax the brain and take away a person's energy and motivation, and many factors in a person's life can negatively affect that person's motivation in regards to picking up a book, or really doing anything that requires attentiveness and work. I still have trouble picking up books most of the time, and when I do, it's (usually, but not always) much easier for me to put it down than it was to pick it up.
    So, I'm not suggesting you have anxiety or depression if you feel that way about books, but I will say that when I read the Op's post I felt completely like he or she'd just described my relationship with books 99% of the time, and that I suffer from these problems, and that I've realized through using Klonopin (as well as other factors) that anxiety and depression negatively affect my willingness to read a book, or really do anything productive if I'm faced with choosing between spending my time on an easy, yet non-productive option, such as television, versus a productive option, yet one that requires work, such as books.

    My two cents. Anyone else experience anything like I've described? Just curious :)
     
  14. nomadic myth

    nomadic myth New Member

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    I get tired not reading. I find the most rejuvenating thing in my busy life is to sit down with a book and a coffee for a couple of hours. The more intellectual the book, the better.
     
  15. nick_m100

    nick_m100 New Member

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    Changes too much, if you want to know ask.
    We need to make up a new term for when one's eyes go fuzzy during reading. I suggest "Fuzzing Out".
     
  16. book.lover

    book.lover New Member

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    When I'm reading a book that I enjoy, it seems my brain becomes more awake and I can't stop reading. I can read all night long, until 4-5-6 am when I'm really into a book. Of course it wreaks havoc on the brain the next day, but during the reading, it's euphoria. I do get fatigued at the computer, though - eyes, brain, neck, shoulders - even if I'm enjoying what I'm doing.
     
  17. angerball

    angerball Active Member

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    I think it depends on the book. If it's easy and fast-paced, then not really; anything remotely heavy though, can be quite taxing. :rolleyes:
     
  18. bookgirl92

    bookgirl92 kickbox

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    my side effects.

    when ever i get into a good book after i stop for the time being my head starts to throb and i feel light headed. another side effect for me is i feel extremly tired and when i sit down i don't feel like getting up. is that normal?
     
  19. BeerWench13

    BeerWench13 Active Member

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    My eyes will get tired, especially after a long reading session on a lazy, rainy day. However, rarely does my brain need a rest. When I get engrossed in a book I can read for hours on end even if the house is burning down around me. I never want to stop. The only exception to this is reading boring guidebooks/work texts. My brain is telling me that it is not entertained in the slightest and I will have step away for a bit and then attempt to start again. Reading anything else is a treat for me since my time is usually limited, so, other than the eye strain, I'm elated to be delving into a good book.

    I do find that some reading, such as Shakespeare, requires a break after a story or two or I end up dreaming in Shakespearian prose. I also read a great deal of Dr. Seuss when I was younger and found every character rhyming in "Seussese" in my dreams. That was the sign to pick up something else for a while.
     
  20. ewomack

    ewomack Member

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    I don't know!!!! Yet...
    I usually read in 1-2 hour spurts with 10 - 30 minute breaks inbetween. This seems to keep strain from developing (for me, at least). If I skip a break I sometimes get headaches and goofy eyes. A break usually clears it all up. Yay!

    I have also noticed that if I take notes while reading then strain doesn't develop for even protracted periods of time. This might be because moving my eyes from the book to a notebook provides a rest from the focused eye scanning that reading requires. Maybe. Maybe not...
     

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