The month of July is dedicated to social wellness. Connecting with other people can be an interesting, exciting, and healthy part of being human. However feelings of loneliness are prevalent in society, and fears of betrayal rejection and mistrust prevent people from opening or reopening themselves up.

Having strong social connections assists with:

Self esteem – having people care and respect you can feel really good

Coping skills – having emotional and social support can make it easier to cope with stressful situations

Stress – research suggests supportive connections can improve our resilience to stress

Feeling of belonging – strong social circles can help you feel a sense of feeling at “home”.

Mental health For all the reasons above, strong social connections can also help to reduce depression, anxiety and a range of other mental health issues.

Here are some techniques to increase you connections with others:

Spend quality time with existing friends and family – strengthening existing bonds can help to improve your social connection and for most people, easier to do than find new connections.

Reconnect with old friends – realised someone you really care for has slipped off the radar with life’s busy-ness? Now might be the time to reconnect that friendship.

Get to know the people around you! This could be colleagues, neighbors or acquaintances you’ve met through others.

Volunteer! This is a great way to meet like-minded people while helping out a cause close to your heart.

Join a club or a group. Another great way to meet like minded people who have similar interests.

Take up a new hobby. Meet an entirely new group of people and learn something new also.

Attend events. This doesn’t have to be in-person (we see you you beautiful introvert) – online events can also be a place where friendships can be made.

Put simply, staying home and doing your own thing day in and day out may feel comfortable, but its not going to increase your social connections, which, when it clicks can provide so many benefits to the heart, mind and soul.