The other day I received an unexpected gift in the mail: the October issue of “Psychology Today”! There are several wonderful articles in the issue, but the highlighted article is called, “Life Lessons: 5 Truths People Learn too late” by Elizabeth Svoboda. And one of the truths in particular really hit home. Thus, the purpose of this post: I want you to know the truth because I think you might need to hear it as much as I did. So, without further ado…here it is:
“Lesson #4: Social Networks Matter: The strength of your friends is as critical for your health as the lifestyle choices you make.”
The highlights you don’t want to miss:
- The higher the quantity and quality of your relationships, the longer you live.
- People with active social lives were 50 percent less likely to die of any cause than their nonsocial counterparts.
- Low levels of social interaction have the same negative effects as smoking 15 cigarettes day– and even worse effects than being obese or not exercising (from study by Julianne Holt-Lunstad of Brigham Young University).
- The more social connections you have, the greater your ability to fight infection (from study by Sheldon Cohen of Carnegie Mellon University)
The takeaway?: “Stress has potentially negative effects on health and well-being, but knowing your friends have your back can prevent such fallout” (Cohen).
Wow! I knew supportive friendships were important, but I didn’t realize just how much! Here’s to reaching out, making time, and enjoying a friendship today!
To read the full article (and the other 4 life lessons!) click the following link: http://www.psychologytoday.com/collections/201209/life-lessons/lessons-loving