What keeps us healthy and happy growing up? If we could invest in our best future self today, where would we spend our time and energy? There was a recent survey of millennials who were asked what are the most important goals in their lives that will lead them to happiness and about 80% answered that they want to become rich or famous… And subconsciously we all work tirelessly devoting all our energy there as we are given the impression that this is what will lead us to a good life. The choices we make today, however, are not capable of making us understand the real meaning in real time. Only if we look back and after these choices have already led us somewhere, could we evaluate what was worthwhile and what was not. But we certainly could not go back in time and change direction.
But we can take into account the striking conclusions of the longest-running Harvard study, which began in 1938 and lasted 80 years! University researchers formed two groups of men, one consisting of 268 Harvard students and one of 456 boys ages 12 to 16 who grew up in Boston City, in poor economic conditions.
They began to study everyone’s lives, recording from year to year information about their work, their life at home, their social interactions, their health. To study the lives of all these people they did not just send questionnaires to fill in but interviewed them in the living rooms of their homes, got their medical examinations from their doctors to study, “scanned” their brains, talked to their children, they videotaped themselves talking to their wives about their deepest concerns. Some of them grew up to become workers, salesmen, lawyers, other doctors and one President of America (John F. Kennedy)! Some became alcoholics and some developed schizophrenia, some started from very low, climbed stairs and evolved very quickly, and some followed the exact opposite course.
What is the conclusion regarding true happiness from the tens of thousands of pages of information they have gathered about these lives? As you can imagine the clearest message that came out is that it is not wealth or fame or hard work that make us happier and healthier, but good productive relationships!
Psychiatrist George Vaillant, who led the study from 1972 to 2004, wrote with humor: “The 75 years and $ 20 million spent on this gigantic study lead to a six-word conclusion !: – Happiness is love. The end.- “
3 basic lessons came out for interpersonal relationships that we must take seriously!
Social relationships make us really good and on the contrary loneliness seriously damages our health. They concluded that people who have a better social relationship with their friends, family and the community around them, are not only happier but have better health and live longer than the most isolated! Loneliness or alienation has been shown to lead people to toxicity, their health deteriorating earlier, their brain function declining earlier and eventually living shorter lives.
The second amazing finding is that our relationships and how happy we are in our relationships have a strong impact on our health. Taking care of our body is important, but taking care of our relationships is also a form of self-care. That, I think, is the revelation! It does not matter the number of friends or whether there are stable relationships in our lives. What makes the difference is the quality of these relationships. Close relationships, more than money or fame, are what keep people happy throughout their lives, the study found. These bonds protect people from the dissatisfaction of life, contribute to the delay of mental and physical decline, and predict more accurately the happy and happy life than social class, IQ or even genes!
It was also recorded that those who were in relationships with many conflicts, marriages that had great tensions and confrontations without receiving love and affection had a worse development than those who were simply divorced or just lonely.
People who experienced love relationships and felt they could rely on their partner when and if they needed to, it was observed that their memory remained prosperous. They experienced any physical pain with greater tolerance and intensity and kept less in their memory the bad everyday moments they had experienced!
In stark contrast, those who did not count on their partner’s support were reported to start forgetting much earlier, suffering more intensely, and living with toxic situations.
Love and affection are food for our soul and can now be proven to be imprinted on our body! It acts as an antidote to toxicity and vitally supports our health! Who does not want to feel happy and fulfilled? Who can ignore the blessing of being loved and cared for? But why is it so difficult for it to happen to us? How can we be led in that direction? The answer is simple my friends… Let ‘s get home half an hour earlier from our offices. Let us replace our tablets and mobile phones and television with productive communication time with our people. Let us open our hearts and our arms and let ourselves be loved. Let’s forgive small everyday things that make us feel bad and let’s see the glass half full. Let us cultivate our relationships with the people who make up our daily lives, in the office at home in social gatherings! Let us give love without measure! Will definitely be back with gifts!
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