Friendship is Beneficial to your health

February is usually referred to as the month of love.It is a season that emphasizes the importance of love in our lives. Coincidentally, I want to address the importance of friendship to your health. Apart from the myriads of obvious reasons there are for having friends, research has shown that friendships can have a major impact on your health and well-being.

Good friends are actually good for your health.Friends can help you celebrate good times and provide support during bad times. Friends prevent loneliness and give you a chance to offer needed companionship.Perhaps if you are even lucky, you get them to encourage and motivate you to change or avoid unhealthy lifestyle habits, such as excessive drinking or lack of exercise.

In a 2010 meta-analysis that combined data on more than 308,000 people across 148 studies, for example, researchers found a strong connection between social relationships and life span. The size of the effect rivaled that of better-known health-related behaviors such as smoking and exercise.
Even though the studies did not show how many more extra years you get from having true pals, it is still helpful to know that friendship is a good thing scientifically speaking.

I think one of the problems with this society and this generation is the immeasurable degree of superficiality of so-called friendships that have no roots. 

I figure it is safe to say that too many people are ‘minding their own business’.

I understand and do not belittle the importance of respecting personal space, but there is a need to show genuine interest in people. Otherwise how do you explain to yourself and the world at large why you do not even know your next door neighbor's name?

What is wrong? I get it, there is wickedness and some people are sheer evil, but there is a lot of good in the world and there are still a host of people with good hearts.

You need to be friendly and invest more time in your friendships. Especially since Valentine's day is just around the corner, show some love to your friends. Check up on them. Give them a random, unexpected call just out of the blues.

Our culture today applauds individualism.

People constantly chasing the next ‘big thing’ and too busy to even 
engage in the moment, to engage others. So you have to be very deliberate about your friendships. You have to go the extra-mile.
Be kind. Be empathetic. Truly care for others. Nurture these great relationships.

It still beats me how Joyce Carol Vincent (of blessed memory), a British woman, who passed away alone in her home in London and no one noticed for two years! 
It’s heart-breaking. 
She was said to have passed away from possible asthma attack or complications of peptic ulcer. Either way, it was just so sad.
Our world needs more genuine people who will probe their friends back to safety. Friends who will refuse to be pushed away. People who will abandon the charades of association and embrace an alliance of profound, true, qualitative and selfless friendship. 
Indeed friendship is serious business because it sometimes entails sacrifice, giving your time and heart, but it is well worth it.

This is an encouragement to choose and pursue friendship.
A call to spend your energy and invest your heart in valuable friendships and shun bogus ones.

My candid advise is to choose friendship and allow it to flourish and you will reap the benefits immensely.
Take advantage of this season of love and show love to all your friends.
Happy Valentine's Day!

“A friend is a person with whom I may be sincere. Before him I may think aloud. I am arrived at last in the presence of a man so real and equal, that I may drop even those undermost garments of dissimulation, courtesy, and second thought, which men never put off, and may deal with him with the simplicity and wholeness with which one chemical atom meets another.”

                                                      – Ralph Waldo Emerson


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