Amidst the busy pace of our lives, professional obligations and personal lives there’s an important force that we often forget to acknowledge but hugely impacts our overall wellbeing: Friendships. Beyond companionship, having strong friendships play an important role in our mental, emotional and sometimes even physical health. In this blog we will be taking a closer look into human connections and the link between good friendships and our wellbeing. 

  1. Friendships can be thought of as the “social glue” that binds us all together. They provide us with a sense of belonging, support and comradery that can help us out when going through tough times. Research has shown that strong social connections are directly correlated with overall happiness and life satisfaction. A study by the Journal of Happiness found that people with strong social relationships were not only happier but also had a higher sense of purpose in their lives. 
  2. Having supportive friends can alleviate your stress! The crucial aspect here is “Supportive” - your social circle influences you, so if your friends are uplifting, positive people who genuinely care about your well-being, then you’ll feel the difference. Simply by spending time with good friends, whether that be catching up over a coffee or doing activities together, can significantly reduce your stress levels. According to a study by the University of Oxford, socialising with friends triggers your brain to release Oxytocin, often known as “The Love Hormone” which helps to reduce stress and promote feelings of trust and bonding. 
  3. One of the most profound aspects of a good friendship is their ability to serve as an emotional support system. When we face challenges or setbacks, friends can offer a listening ear, empathy, encouragement and even some down to earth advice for us. The act of confiding in a trusted friend can alleviate feelings of loneliness and isolation, helping to prevent negative effects of stress and adversity. Research conducted by the Journal of Health and Social Behaviours suggests that having a strong social support network can improve resilience and protect against mental health disorders, such as depression and anxiety. 
  4. Friendships can have a huge influence on our lifestyle choices and habits. When we surround ourselves with friends who prioritise health and well-being, we are more likely to adopt similar behaviours. Whether it’s exercising together, cooking nutritious meals, or doing mindfulness practices, friends can provide motivation and accountability making it easier to stick to these habits. A study in the Journal of Obesity found that people were more likely to lose weight and build healthy habits if their friends were also making efforts to do so. This highlights the power of social influence on our own behaviours. 
  5. These days digital connections can often overshadow face-to-face interactions. It’s essential to prioritise growing meaningful friendships and focusing on quality over quantity. Investing time and effort into nurturing genuine connections built on trust, respect and shared values, can make you feel more happiness and fulfilment overall.

Final Thoughts

You may or may not know that Belu Life is founded by two friends, and so we have a deep appreciation of friendship ingrained in our brand - without it we wouldn’t exist!

From providing emotional support, to promoting healthy habits and longevity, the link between good friendships and our overall well being is undeniable. By nurturing these connections we not only enrich our own lives, but also theirs. So let’s cherish our friends and celebrate each other, as friendship really is one of the most rewarding elements of our lives!

May 16, 2024 — Bethan Trussell