It might be obvious how friendships can positively impact our lives, but the full effects may not be so overt. As adults, it is harder to make friends than when we were younger; we don’t have opportunities like school or sports anymore.
But we have more options than we think.
Friendships are extremely valuable, even as adults, and for some, friendships are a lifeline. Find out how friendships make our lives more meaningful and how we can nurture the friends we do have.
Benefits of Friends
Friendships can help stave off loneliness, which can help reduce the risk of depression. For some demographics like the elderly or people with intellectual disabilities, friendships can be a lifeline. Still, friendships are essential for all of us.
There are multiple benefits to cultivate friendships with co-workers, neighbors, and maintaining the ones from childhood. Check out the ways that friendships can help us physically and emotionally:
- Increase your happiness and reduce stress
- Help you deal with trauma and challenges, like divorce, illness, or a loved one’s death
- Encourage you to meet your goals
- Provide confidence and a sense of self-worth
- Lower BMI and longer lifespan
Ways To Meet New People
Making friends as an adult isn’t impossible. Think about people who have made a positive impression on you—you might have overlooked a co-worker or someone through family ties. Invite them to coffee or to an activity that you both enjoy.
Don’t limit yourself. Go to places by yourself to meet new people:
- Find groups like a book club or softball to find people with similar interests as you
- Volunteer for a cause you love
- Say yes when someone invites you to something!
Understanding how friendships can make our lives more meaningful can help you appreciate the friends you already have! Reinvest yourself and nurture your friendships:
- Check in with them and listen to them.
- When they have problems, offer empathy and solutions when they ask for them.
- Be open! Share concerns and personal experiences to show your friend how much you value them.
Friendship is about offering and receiving support. At times, you’re the one needing help, and other times, you’re the one holding them up. Surround yourself with friends—it’s good for you!