Making friends is not only fun, but also good for your health and well-being. Here are four benefits of making friends, based on scientific evidence:
1. Friends can lower your blood pressure and boost your immune system. Having close friends can reduce your risk of health problems like heart disease, stroke, and infections. This is because friends can help you cope with stress, which can harm your cardiovascular and immune systems.
2. Friends can encourage you to adopt healthy habits. Friends can motivate you to eat better, exercise more, quit smoking, or drink less. They can also support you in achieving your health goals and sticking to your plans. Research shows that people are more likely to succeed in changing their behaviour when they do it with a friend¹².
3. Friends can provide you with emotional support and happiness. Friends can listen to your problems, offer advice, comfort you, and make you laugh. They can also share your joys, celebrate your achievements, and appreciate you for who you are. Having friends can increase your sense of belonging, purpose, and self-esteem.
4. Friends can help you learn and grow. Friends can expose you to new ideas, perspectives, cultures, and experiences. They can challenge you to think differently, try new things, and improve yourself. They can also inspire you to be more creative, open-minded, and adventurous¹³.
To enjoy these benefits, you should make an effort to maintain and nurture your friendships. You can do this by staying in touch, showing interest, expressing gratitude, giving feedback, and being loyal. You can also make new friends by joining clubs, volunteering, taking classes, or attending events. Making friends is not only good for your health, but also for your soul.