Of all the coping techniques known to diffuse stress, what rises to the top of the list is the one called “support groups.” It’s the reason why jokes are more funny when shared. It’s the reason why we prefer to do yoga in groups rather than alone, and it certainly is the core of success behind recovery groups of all kinds. Having friends around makes a meal so much more enjoyable. John Donne was right when he said, “No man is an island.” Good friends can certainly take the edge off a bad day. Friendships contribute to the best memories of life you will ever have. Regarding stress, the bottom line is that we all want to be accepted. Acceptance is a form of love and ultimately we all need to be loved, too. Social support, however, takes work. Friendships just don’t happen. They require constant nurturing. Friendships require more than Facebook updates and tweets. Never let technology replace a strong bear hug. Phone calls, pot lucks, birthday cards, morning jogs, rock concerts, tailgate barbeques and perhaps even vacations together; these are the moments one looks back on with fondness. As the stress of life increases, so too, does the importance of friendships. Indeed, that is why we are here in the first place.
• Stress Tip for the Day:
How strong is your support group? Who do you count among your closest friends? What do you do to nurture these friendships? In the normal course of life, friends move, some even die all too soon. What do you do to maintain that critical mass of friendships, that critical mass of support? Consider adding to your social support group but making a new friend today.
• Links Worth Noting:
Sometimes, help is needed by unknown friends. This is called altruism. On of my favorite organizations is Heifer.org. You may have heard about it, if not here is a link to their website. http://www.heifer.org/site/c.edJRKQNiFiG/b.204586/?msource=kw2743&gclid=CPTw1tSQ_p0CFQohDQodWyfUoA
• Photo of the Day:
Nearly two years ago a good friend and college buddy from The University of Illinois called me up and invited me to run in Hood to Coast Relay with 11 of his friends (Thanks, Barry!) I said yes before I knew what I was getting into, but it was one of the best memories I’ll ever have of male bonding. Here is one (of hundreds of) photo(s) I took at the finish line (can you sense the exuberance of the moment?). This photo, perhaps more than any other taken that weekend epitomizes the word support!
• Quote for the Day:
“I get by with a little help from my friends.” – John Lennon
Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 10 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (6E). He can be reached through his website:www.brianlukeseaward.net
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.