I have just come back from a weekend away with some old friends and I feel energised, happy and motivated. It got me thinking about the power of friendship and connection. As human beings, we are programmed to seek connection with others.
This connection reduces our stress levels and help make us produce cortisol, ‘the happy hormone’. There are many different types of connection; but fundamentally, feeling that we are not alone and that we are part of something larger than ourselves is beneficial, supports us in difficult times and helps to build our resilience.
Five types of connection to be nurtured:
There are many different types of friendship and we all need different people at different times in our lives. Having people around you that have known you at your best (and your worst) can help prop you up whatever life throws at you. Sharing laughter with friends has to be one of the best feelings.
Being part of a club or activity with others is another great way to feel connected. Learning a new skill or working as a team in a sport will all work to build connection and give you a shared purpose.
Your work colleagues can also give you the benefits of connection: working together and sharing all the ups and downs of most offices. Some of these relationships never venture outside the office, but others can translate to ‘real life’ too. Either way enjoy the benefits from being around others and what you can teach each other.
Families are an intrinsic part of all of us and they can be a wonderful, supportive network in times of need. Generally they have known us longer than anyone else and sometimes know us better than we know ourselves. Identify who your family is. This may not be limited to those you are connected to genetically, but those who have a special place in your heart regardless. Cherish them and the love and support that provide.
Helping out for a community cause or for those who are less fortunate than yourself can be another great way to find connection. Being part of something outside your immediate circle will help broaden your experience of life. Being of service to others is a really important part of a balanced life.
I'm a Personal Coach who loves finding out about what makes people tick and helping them to make the changes necessary to get to where they want to go so they can thrive.