Relationships = What % of Happiness?

f word to live by female friendships friendship fwordstoliveby Jul 27, 2022
“The greatest gift you can give someone is your own happiness”. Abraham Hicks

AND…Quality relationships attribute to 70% of that happiness.

Statistics show that we replace half of our friends every seven years. Additionally, research shows 61% of women experience loneliness on a regular basis.

You might be wondering how we can know so many people and still feel lonely. Shasta shared a few qualities that make for a fulfilling friendship. One where you feel seen, heard and loved.

  1. Positivity. You don’t need more whiny, manipulative people in your life. You want more joy and to feel good with friendships. This comes from laughter, smiles and kindness. Of course, we will still shed tears and share challenges but with that you should feel gratitude, affirmation and validation.
  2. Consistency. You need to spend time with each other. These friendships can be consistent at work, church, the gym, or community groups on social media (if you participate). Over time you build rituals, trust and feel safe to share.
  3. Vulnerability. You have to let yourself be seen. Share the great things you have been accomplishing (you aren’t bragging but building on your relationship). And also be vulnerable about your feelings.

What we are really craving is Love. But we all must practice the steps for stronger intimacy.

There are definitely some strong, damaging, health benefits if you lack in relationships

Lack of Relationships = Premature Death                                                                                                 

“I am not aware of any other factor in medicine (than intimacy and love) – not diet, not smoking, not exercise, not stress, not genetics, not drugs, not surgery – that has a greater impact on our quality of life, incidence of illness, and premature death from all causes." -  Dr Dean Ornish

Loneliness damages our bodies. It is…

  • Equivalent to smoking 15 cigarettes a day
  • Equivalent to being an alcoholic
  • More harmful than not exercising
  • Twice as harmful as obesity

How loved and supported we feel will tell us a lot about our health 10-20 years down the road than any other factor.

The Loneliness Epidemic
“Loneliness is also associated with a greater risk of cardiovascular disease, dementia, depression, and anxiety…During my years caring for patients, the most common pathology I saw was not heart disease or diabetes; it was loneliness.” - Dr Vivek Murthy Harvard Business Review 2017

Social support increases resilience. It increases your self- esteem. Feelings of being understood. It helps motivate you to adopt healthy behaviors. You will see stressful events as less threatening. And it will give you an enhanced sense of control.

WOW – if all of this evidence doesn’t motivate you to deepen your friendships then I don’t know what will.

By sharing this with you today, I hope you realize how important it is to slow down and really listen and care for other women. To develop deep intimate relationships. It takes time but the health benefits will add years to your life.