As we settle into a marriage or long-term partnership, or when children arrive, we can lose the habit of inviting people to our homes. We can also get into the habit of turning invitations down. People become more isolated as they grow older. With the passing years our social circles should not become smaller. Because as we grow older we need more people in our lives.
There is an epidemic of loneliness in our communities. Children are growing up without developing their social skills set. They beg to stay on their laptop when a visit to nana is suggested. They are chased upstairs when visitors call. How many families sit at the table for dinner every day? We need to connect with each other. People need people. We are each other’s greatest resource.
Friendships, past and present, old and new, are treasures. The more friends we have the better – friends on the road where we live, friends from our workplace and friends from our college or school days. And remember we’re allowed to make new friends! So don’t stop reaching out to others. We should celebrate friendships as much as we can. Why not have someone over this weekend? Or accept the kind invitation that you received rather than lie on the couch in your own company for the night.
According to numerous psychological studies social connectedness predicts vulnerability to disease and death above and beyond traditional risk factors such as smoking, blood pressure, and physical activity! Eat your greens and exercise but don’t forget to connect.
(C) Shane Martin