A source of comfort and joy is a sense of connection to self and those close to us. Gifts of healing lie in deeper relationships with friends and family. A greater gift is given to us when we find a connection to what truly matters.
People with strong social networks live longer, are at reduced risk of coronary heart disease, are less likely to report being depressed, or to suffer a recurrence of cancer and are less susceptible to infectious illness than those who are isolated. This could also be for those who perceive they are isolated even though they might be among family and friends.
Being in relationship with others increases a persons chance to cope with stress.
How can you get more connected when stress, illness, and a busy lifestyle are the issues to overcome? Overcoming isolation requires effort. When one is feeling overwhelmed going through simple motions is difficult enough. So it is important to begin with simple ways of becoming involved and finding connections.
- Spend time with people you love and who support you to live a healthy life.
- Volunteer your time for a cause you care about. It has been noted that when people help others their own stress decreases and the joy created helps in fighting off illnesses
- Humor is a wonderful stress reducer and sharing some laughter with a friend even for a few minutes will not only reduce your stress but will create a thread of bond with another
- Maybe taking classes in a community center where yoga, walking groups, meditation are offered. An art class or some other form of self expression might make a huge contribution to your health.
Cultivating that connection to what truly matters begins with being present to ourselves and others.