How to Stay Connected
Connection with others has forever been an unspoken need that humanity as a whole has greatly identified with. In fact, Marshall B. Rosenberg, psychologist, author and developer of the process of Non-violent Communication, shares that humans have an innate need to feel connected to one another. Singularly, though we all have different ways, feelings and thoughts when it comes to being connected to certain groups or individuals. Thus, connection can be further defined independently as:
- to know and be known
- and so much more...
As a result, individual needs to feel connected to others can be emotional, physical, spiritual and/or mental. Symptoms of disconnect can include depression, boredom, stress and anxiety, addiction, meaninglessness and more. There are so many reasons why connecting with others can improve these symptoms as you can read about here. Luckily there are steps you can take to connect with others (and even yourself) in order to enhance feelings of connection.
Here are a few tips to give a try.
Join a social group of like-minded people.
Do you enjoy knitting, running, singing, reading, hiking…? Look into local or community groups that bring together individuals who enjoy similar things. Social groups like this can improve your mental, emotional and physical health. In a study of 148 studies, those with stronger social relationships were shown to have a 50% increased likelihood of survival.
Make it a point to visit your loved ones.
Scheduling time for friends and family can greatly enhance one’s meaning and purpose in life. According to a 2010 research review, socializing with friends and family can increase one’s life span. Look at your calendar and go ahead and pencil in certain time for your personal social life.
Meditation is a great way to reflect inwardly and connect to one’s values, beliefs and passions. Marsha Lucas, psychologist and neuropsychologist, says meditation can help one manage reactions, urge emotional resilience, increase empathy, enhance self- awareness, improve communication and so on. This can significantly enhance the health of the relationship you have with others. So find a meditation class, look up a guided meditation or just sit in silence for a bit.
Make it tangible by journaling.
Journaling to connect to one’s inner most thoughts and feeling can be one of the most therapeutic ways of connecting to your own personal needs When you are perosnally in tune with your own needs you are able to better communicate and demonstrate these needs to others which can have a positive impact on the relationships you form. Moreover, according to the University of Rochester Medical Center, journaling can help one cope with anxiety, deal with depression and improve stress that is exemplified in our connection to others.
Begin by picking out a notebook that will serve as your journal, pick up your pen or pencil and start writing what comes to your mind. Try to journal atleast once a day for five minutes or more.
To learn more about NVC, click here.
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– CASEY EDMONDS, CHC
Health Advisor | Email Casey