“Our need to connect is as fundamental as our need for food and water.” -Gareth Cook
Do you have a good social life?
Do you have lots of friends and connections? I’m not talking about the number of friends you have on Facebook or the number of followers you have on Instagram or Twitter. I’m talking about real, honest to goodness connection which involves genuine emotional relationship and face-to-face interaction.
According to research keeping a good social life has a huge and significant effect on our mental, as well as physical health. It’s been established that less than good social life has the same negative impact as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. It’s twice as harmful as obesity, even more dangerous than never exercising or being an alcoholic.
Studies suggest that being socially isolated may have a greater effect on the risk of early death. Yes, not having a social life can, in fact, shorten your life!
Social disconnection isn’t just lonely. It’s unhealthy, and it can kill you.
Dependency on Technology
Has the current technology and housing trends increased the risk of loneliness? The technology advancements we have today definitely made some major impacts into our lives. So much so that it has affected our way of social interaction.
Social media and texting has made it easier for people to avoid relationship building. People may be more connected now more than ever, but social media networks can deprive us of human interaction. Instead of interacting in person and in real time, it creates a virtual substitute for companionship.
Too often what counts for social media is in fact social isolation. People are digitally obsessed, staring at their screens when waiting for a train, or on public transport. And at home, it’s just as bad. At least watching TV was something people can do together.
Since social interactions play a critical role in health, make socialising one of your priorities – make connections. Go out and devote some time for social activities. Join different groups or local communities around your area, whether it’s a social group, a hobby group, a sports group or an Asian community in Sydney. Have fun, be active and be as social as you can.
Remaining socially active and keeping interpersonal relationships can help your well-being as it helps you maintain good physical, psychological and emotional health. Reach out to your loved ones. Being with friends and family can be one of the main sources of meaning and fulfillment in a person’s life.