I read a sobering news account. We are a nation of lonely people. Beyond that, loneliness is linked to serious health problems like depression, sleep disorders, and chronic pain, among others.
I already knew a bit about the opposite side of that loneliness coin. I’ve seen research that shows friendships and social networks can lead to healthier diets, more exercise, and better sleep habits; that strong social ties promote brain health as you age. Research even shows that friendships provide a greater positive impact in your life than do family ties.
So, if loneliness is bad for your health, what is its cure? As a participant in Women of the ELCA, I’m quick to answer with “living in community.”
And when we can’t do that, check on your friends and neighbors. Give them a call to see how they’re doing. You’ll both be glad you did.
This message is an excerpt from a Women of the ELCA blog by Linda Post Bushkofsky.