Friendship makes life more enjoyable and enriches one’s everyday experiences.
Friendship is important because it helps us build connections with people who share our values or interests. Friends help us prevent loneliness or isolation and are supportive companions as we work toward living purposeful lives. They can also encourage us to pursue our passions and dreams and offer support or advice in hard times.
Our friendships help our mental health and overall happiness. We build human connections in our professional lives and personal lives. And over time, those connections may grow. We might make friends with people temporarily, depending on where we go to school or work. Some friendships last for life, though, regardless of where you meet these people. They connect us to our core values at work, when facing challenges, or during our daily life. The emotional support we receive from our close friends helps inspire us when life feels dull and provides encouragement to overcome challenges.
When we’re faced with uncertainty, our friends are there to provide the positive encouragement that we need to embrace new journeys or face tough times. Our good friends can also notice and let us know that we’re becoming consumed with work or another problem in our lives and need to take a break.
Our social support is right beside us throughout the different stages of our lives. Friends keep us grounded and help us remember what we value and want to achieve in life — even when things get tricky. True friends stand by us when we’re adjusting to a new change. They remind us of our potential, relieve stress, recognize our comfort zones, and prevent us from feeling lonely.
So how do friendship contribute to our well-being?
We Can Be Ourselves Around Friends
We can be ourselves around friends and know that they will still accept us. One of the best things about friendship is that we can be ourselves around our friends. We can be honest and authentic and express our true feelings instead of hiding behind a false personality.
Friendship Is Good for Your Physical Health
It turns out that healthy relationships actually contribute to good physical health. Having a close circle of friends can decrease your risk of health problems like diabetes, heart attack, and stroke. Having strong social ties can also decrease feelings of loneliness, which evidence shows can take a toll on your longevity.
Friends Encourage Healthy Behaviors
One possible explanation for those health benefits is that friendships can help you make lifestyle changes that can have a direct impact on your well-being. For example, your friends can help you set and maintain goals to eat better and exercise more. They can also watch out for you and give a heads-up when any unhealthy behaviors get out of hand.
Friends Give You Emotional Support
If you find yourself going through a hard time, having a friend to help you through can make the transition easier. Research also shows that happiness is contagious among friends. One study of high school students found that those who were depressed were twice as likely to recover if they had happy friends. Likewise, kids were half as likely to develop depression if their friends had a “healthy mood.
Friends Help Build Your Confidence
Everyone has self-doubts and insecurities every now and then. But having friends who support you plays a big role in building your self-esteem, or how much you appreciate and love yourself. Supportive friends can help you feel more confident by offering praise and reassurance when you’re feeling unsure. They’ll shine a light on just how amazing you are and how much you have to offer others.
Friends Understand Us in a Way That Family Members Sometimes Don’t
Family and friends are both important to us, but they have different roles in our lives. We might turn to our parents or grandparents when it comes to career choices, important life events like weddings or buying a house, and even financial issues like taking out a loan or managing investments. But we would probably talk to our friends about less serious matters like stress at work or what’s going on with other people in their lives – especially if we’re interested in gossip!
You may feel more comfortable discussing certain topics with your friends than with other family members because they already know so much about you and have had similar experiences themselves.
Friends Push You To Be Your Best
Friends can also provide a positive influence. If you make friends with people who are generous with their time, help others, or are ambitious or family-oriented, you are more likely to develop those values yourself. Great friends have the power to mold you into the best version of yourself. They see you and love you for who you truly are. They encourage you and push you to do better and be the person you want to be—your “ideal self.”