Social Wellness doesn’t mean grabbing your smartphone or computer and engaging on social media. It means connecting with other people and also getting to know yourself better. Research from the University of Minnesota finds that living in isolation is as bad for your health as smoking or high blood pressure.
So with all the celebrations and great weather this summer is bound to bring, it’s a great time to get out and meet up with other people or schedule in some “me” time.
Here are seven sure fire ways to increase your social wellness this summer:
1. Join a gym or outdoor club – becoming a member generally puts you with other people by default. Use this to your advantage and connect with someone that shares or can help you reach your fitness goals.
2. Volunteer – instead of giving dollars to your favorite cause, give some free time. Volunteering will generally give you something arguably more valuable than money, and that’s fulfillment. It gives you the warm fuzzy feeling of doing something helpful, which is an important human social element.
3. Choose a hobby – chances are there are others out there interested in the same things as you. It’s a great way to get engaged with a group of like minded individuals. LinkedSenior.com states that hobbies can help many areas of life from social connectedness to enhancing your immune system and reducing stress.
4. Nurture your friendships – nurture those relationships you’ve been meaning to catch up on. Social wellness also means letting go of those friendships that may have run their course, and that’s ok too!
5. Focus on your own needs – being effective socially doesn’t mean giving your all to everyone else, especially if they don’t have your best interest in mind. UNH Health Services notes a socially well person has assertiveness and the ability to be themselves in different company. So make sure to set aside some “ME” time this July.clawfoot tub
6. Resolve Conflicts – escalated arguments is not a pillar of social wellness. Try using humor to resolve tense or awkward situations and don’t bottle up things up inside, this can lead to more serious health consequences.
7. Connect with a pet – who says social wellness means only human interactions? Brining a dog into your life is a healthy decision for your physical and mental health. It can lower your cortisol (stress hormone) levels and increase activeness. Into cats? That’s ok too, they help to boost self-esteem and overall health.