By: Red Hot Mamas
Published: May 11, 2022
“A friend is one that knows you as you are, understands where you have been, accepts what you have become, and still, gently allows you to grow.”
— William Shakespeare
Dear Red Hot Mamas,
The older that I get, the more I understand how valuable friendships are in my life. In fact, friends have made my life much richer and more beautiful. All of you Red Hot Mamas have certainly enriched my life. And I thank you for doing so!
Over the years I have watched my grandchildren with their friends. It’s obvious, they seem free to nurture meaningful connections through their schools, churches, and other activities. But unfortunately, we as adults have many family pressures, career obligations, and caring for our family which sometimes inhibits us from such social interactions with our friends or even making new friends. And as a result, many of us feel lonely because we lack interaction with friends.
I love the quote from the philosopher Aristotle “In poverty and other misfortunes of life, true friends are a sure refuge. They keep the young out of mischief, they comfort and aid the old in their weakness and they incite those in the prime of life to noble deeds.” This substantiates how valuable our friendships are especially when we are facing difficult times.
We should also not overlook the fact that genuine friendships have been shown to improve our health and increase our longevity.
Here are just a few benefits of friendships:
- Friends help us not to feel lonely
- Boost our optimism, happiness and reduce our stress
- They support us through challenges, such as family problems, divorce, illness, death of a loved one or pet, unemployment and even pandemics
- Encourage us change unhealthy lifestyle habits
- Friendships help keep our mind sharp. They help us to ward off loneliness which is associated with dementia that may be due to the absence of social attachments.
- They improve our self-confidence and self-worth
Tips on how to make new friends:
- Red Hot Mamas has a community forum on www.inspire.com and also www.menopause.responsumhealth.com a new online connection and knowledge platform for women living with menopausal symptoms
- Be proactive. If you feel a connection with someone, take it to the next level. Meet them for coffee, lunch or dinner, or even take a walk with them.
- Put yourself out there and reaching out to different people to see what resonates
- Attend community events. Look for groups or clubs that interest you. You can find groups like this on social media, community bulletin boards, or other places online by doing a simple Google search for meetups in your area.
- Volunteer. Volunteering can be a great way to spark potential friendships too. It’s easy to form strong connections when you work with people who have mutual interests
- Get creative. Walk your dog and chat with people with other dogs.
- Try new things. Take a college course to meet people who have similar interests. You can also explore classes at a local gym, senior center, or community fitness facility.
In closing, make sure that you carve out time in your life for friends.
Good Health to You All,