Spend time with people you love and value
We are social beings and we need people around us. Even introverts like the company of people they are comfortable with and seek it out in small amounts. Having friends and/or family around gives human beings a sense of belonging because home isn’t just a place, it is a feeling of familiarity (smells, sounds, food and people).
Having people who care about you is a source of comfort for your heart and a source of security for your mind.
Physical touch also makes a difference. Kisses, hugs and holding hands release endorphins into our body and make us feel cheerful.
WHAT RESEARCH SAYS:
An 80 years long study performed by Harvard University to study lives of men and the factors that influence their health and happiness placed close and fulfilling relationships as one of the most important ones in determining life quality and length.
Other studies were done on people living in blue zones (where an average person lives close to a 100 years) also proved yet again that having a friend circle or being part of a community makes people healthier, happier and live much longer, even more than physical exercise does.
BUT AREN’T WE WITH PEOPLE ALL THE TIME ANYWAY?
The important thing to remember is to spend time with people in a meaningful way. Quality time makes you happier, small talk, gossip and talking about topics that you don’t enjoy drains you.
Definition of quality time differs for everyone so you have to figure out and do what makes you happy. Here are some suggestions:
One way to spend quality time is to share experiences: volunteer, run, take a class, holiday, go on a picnic or cook. A shared experience gives rise to memories and bonds people.
Give to others: Be there for someone. Pay attention. Honest conversations and small gestures build trust. Trust is very important to feel the warmth of friendship. Give and you’ll receive without even trying.
Work towards a shared goal: when you’re working on something with someone, common struggles, mistakes and learnings bind the group of people together. To struggle and to learn to get up again means you have to support each other. The process brings people closer and creates relationships that add joy and beauty to our lives.
Cultivate a few close and meaningful relationships and invest in them regularly.
Strong human bonds are a source of tremendous happiness. If you lack a loving family or friends, join something where you can meet people. It becomes harder to make friends as we grow older but it is worth trying again and again, and sincerely.
Human connection helps us feel less alone and realise that we all are going through the same struggles. Get out and find people you connect with, they exist and they’re looking for you as much as you are looking for them. I speak from personal experience!
If you're looking to do some light-reading or find answers to happiness related questions, head to: