Friendship: How Important is our Need to Connect?

Key to Friendship

One of the first chapter books I remember reading was Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White. The value of a true friend was etched in my mind as I witness the friendship between Charlotte and Wilbur developed. The love and sacrifice between these two characters taught me about the importance of our need to connect.

Why did you do all this for me?” Wilber asked. “I don’t deserve it. I’ve never done anything for you.”

“You have been my friend,” replied Charlotte. “That in itself is a tremendous thing.”

Friendship is a tremendous thing. I see it all over social media – the need for friends. Some voice it as loneliness while others try to compensate by putting up a facade — but the truth remains — we all need friends.

The Science of Friendship

Scientific studies reinforce what our gut already knows to be true — friendship improves our overall sense of well being and protects us from the hardships of life. Social isolation and loneliness increase our chances of premature death. Lack of strong social connection is proving to have more effect on our health than smoking. DO NOT MISUNDERSTAND! I am in no way endorsing the use of cigarettes, but this crazy bit of data goes to prove how important human connection is to our health.  

Physically connecting with other people alters our cortisol or stress hormone levels, helps us maintain healthy eating and exercise routines while curbing negative behaviors like too much TV.” –Dr. Nasreen Khatri

When our children were younger, we always stressed the importance of choosing good friends. These research studies add a whole new dimension as to why good friends are so important.

Friends are Blessings from God

I truly believe God sends friends into our life so we can connect, relate, and grow. Sometimes it is a friend who knows the best way to help you celebrate a win as well as a loss.

For years I struggled with the grief of a wandering child. It was a burden I dared not share because of my fear of how it would reflect on me as a parent. It was such a welcome relief to finally unload my pain with some dear friends who didn’t judge but encouraged and loved me through my trial.

God does notice us, and he watches over us. But it is usually through another person that he meets our needs. -Spencer W. Kimball

God sends people into our lives to take care of us, to meet our needs. As women, we crave connection with other people. It is a part of the way God hardwired our DNA. He wants us to walk with each other in life, encourage one another and share in the burdens we carry.

Takeaways

Being physically present with another human being offers irreplaceable benefits. Our need to connect reaches beyond the basics of being nice. Real friendship is asking the hard questions, sharing the fear and pain of our struggles, and rejoicing in our successes.

When we do the hard, intimate work of friendship, we bring a little more of the divine into daily life. ~Shauna Niequist

Don’t choose perfection and loneliness.  Choose to share the real you — your highs and lows.  Glean the amazing blessing of a real connected friendship. How you decide to live your life is your choice. Be the kind of friend you are hoping for.

How has friendship changed your life?

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Friendship: How Important is our Need to Connect?

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    • Lori Jackson
    • Lori Jackson
    • Lori Jackson
    • Lori Jackson
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