Google defines a friend as someone with whom one has a bond of mutual affection, typically one exclusive of sexual or family relations. In a fast-paced time like ours, where competition is high and tons of people are striving for the same things, stress levels are high. Therefore, maintaining good and healthy friendships is important for our continuous thriving.
Here are some scientifically proven points to show that spending time with friends can reduce our stress levels and help us maintain a healthy life.
1. Laughter reduces stress and boosts our immune system.
We all know that one of the perks of being among good company is laughter. A recent study was carried out on some cancer patients using humor as a test-drive. It showed that the stress levels in participants who watched humorous videos were low compared to the ones who didn’t . This same study shows that the NK levels of the same individuals were high. Natural Killer (NK) cell activity is a parameter used to measure an individual’s resistance to diseases. When your NK levels are high, you are more resistant to diseases hence more likely to live a healthier life.
2. It boosts our self-esteem.
A good sense of self-worth means low stress life and one way to maintain a good self-esteem is by having healthy relationships. Oxytocin is a factor that influences social behavior in males and females . It is responsible for the bonding that occurs between people. Each time spent in the company of good friends is a boost to your oxytocin levels as you are more likely to share with them those things that cause you stress. In sharing, your stress levels will be reduced and your self-worth increases because you become aware of the support system you have in them.
3. It makes us smarter.
Recent studies indicate that social functioning can enhance core mental capacities . It becomes easier to solve problems as other minds are involved and also helps foster healthy competition among friends that boost their mental capacity. Instead of giving in to the stress the next time you are having difficulty with any subject, involve a friend.
In summary, humans are social beings. Our very existences is dependent on the relationships we form. Next time you feel stressed out about anything, look for good friends to hang around with; friends who carry a positive attitude and will make you