Our lives move at a rapid pace these days and the use of mobile technology and social media has us connected to each other more than any other time in history. But these types of social connections are not really meant to form true connectedness or foster a sense of bonding with others. The most important yet least recognized need of most humans is to have a sense of belonging to one another, to our friends and families, to our country and to our world. We feel like life has more meaning when social relationships provide a sense of belonging.
Oftentimes when we are in burnout, we don’t feel well enough to participate in hobbies and tend to isolate from family and friends. Depression, anxiety and physical health issues deprive us of the joy and happiness we once experienced. Isolation and subsequent feelings of loneliness can harm our wellbeing. Isolation has been associated with a wide variety of health problems including high blood pressure, diminished immunity, cardiovascular disease, infectious disease and cognitive decline.
The life you have led doesn’t need to be the only life you have. – Anne Quindlen
Social Connections in the Post-Career Life
The post-career life is one most of us anticipate and it is the time of life when we can more fully develop our relationships with family, friends, and community, take those trips we have dreamed of, or maybe give of our time to a cause we are passionate about. Replacing a career-life with one filled with social connections has both immediate and long-term positive cumulative effects on our physical and emotional health. Strong social ties can instill a sense of responsibility and concern for others which then leads us to want to take better care of our health as well as protect the health of others.
Thrive After Corporate is committed to bringing you information that provides solutions for you to develop a fulfilling and inspiring social life. Our guest writers give valuable insight on how to more deeply connect with your family and how to use the Internet to not only make new friends but to expand your social network. We find unique places for you to explore and encourage you to pack your bags and set free your inner adventurer. Travel opens you up to learn about new cultures, increases your exposure to a variety of culinary experiences, and instills in you a sense of worldliness.
Volunteering and Giving Back
Giving of time to your community or non-profit group is a wonderful way to contribute your skills and talents. In our blogs, we talk to people about their volunteer experiences, give helpful tips on places to volunteer and feature non-profit groups that need your help. United Health commissioned a national survey of 3,351 adults and found that the overwhelming majority of participants reported feeling mentally and physically healthier after a volunteer experience. This study found:
– 76 percent of people who volunteered in the last twelve months said that volunteering has made them feel healthier.
– 94 percent of people who volunteered in the last twelve months said that volunteering improved their mood.
– 78 percent of them said that volunteering lowered their stress level.
– 96 percent reported that volunteering enriched their sense of purpose in life.
– 80 percent of them feel like they have control over their health.
Another study found that volunteers had a 20 percent lower risk of death than their peers who do not volunteer. This decrease was mainly due to volunteers having lower levels of depression, increased life satisfaction, and enhanced well-being.
A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions. – Oliver Wendell Holmes
Yours in vibrant wellbeing,