The other evening, Bea had a great chat on the phone with one of her best friends (she has 2 “best buds” and the three of them have been friends for around 40 years). It was during that laugh-filled conversation that she realized why she loves her long time friendships – these are the friends that truly understand her. They make her laugh, and cry, and let her know when she’s being goofy and needs a “reality check.” These two friends accept her opinionated self, and she accepts them and their quirks.
Everyone needs friendships like this. And maybe a few new friendships, just to add a little spice to our lives. Researchers point out that a network of good friends and other social connections become particularly important as we age.
Friends = Longevity. The Australian Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ALSA), a 10 year longevity study, examined the connection between friendship and longevity, and it’s a positive one! Other research concurs with the ALSA findings.
So besides living a longer (and more fun) life, what are some of the other benefits of friendships?
- Good friends give you support when you need it. Bea’s two best buds, and a couple other close friends, always have the ability to give her a mental health boost.
- They make you feel valued and accepted.
- You can laugh your head off with your friends!
- When you do something stupid, friends call you on it.
These are just a few of the reasons that Bea loves her friends – how about you, readers? What makes YOUR friendships great?
For Further Reading:
- Friendships: A Surprising Key to Longevity
- Health Benefits of Having Good Friends
- Aging and Friendship