Healthy Relationships are Important for Our Health

My friend and colleague Dr. Julie Neal just sent out her monthly newsletter and I wanted to share something written by her team of doctors including Dr Rosia Parrish and Dr. Cheri King on healthy relationships.  I would suggest getting on her newsletter and you can do that by going to her website:  They are located in Boulder, Colorado and are amazing naturopathic doctors.  Thanks for posting this Boulder Natural Health!

Healthy Relationships are Important for Our Health
By Dr Rosia Parrish, Dr. Cheri King & Dr. Julie Neal
The month we are reminded of the importance of nurturing and maintaining healthy relationships.  Having a strong bond with a partner, friend, family member, or community creates connection and purpose in your life, decreases loneliness and isolation.  These bonds help you stay motivated and achieve your goals, and you may live longer.

In 1938, a group of scientists began tracking the health of 268 Harvard sophomores gathering data on their physical and mental health.  Researchers followed the participant’s health trajectories, through their marriages, careers, triumphs, failures and their broader lives.  Results showed that close relationships are what keep people happy throughout their lives. The study is called the Harvard Study of Adult Development. It has been ongoing for over 80 years.  Robert Waldinger, the 4th director of the study, said this:

“The surprising finding is that our relationships and how happy we are in our relationships has a powerful influence on our health.  Taking care of your body is important, but tending to your relationships is a form of self-care too.  That, I think, is the revelation.”

Watch more of Robert Waldinger’s Ted Talk titled, “What Makes a Good Life? Lessons from the Longest Study on Happiness.”

Here are some ways you can keep your relationships nourished and healthy:

1.     Keep Communication Open.  Pick up the phone and reach out to your loved ones.  This is not the same as texting. Ask how they are doing, and listen.

2.     Share Time Together.  Spend time with your loved ones frequently.  Go on date, meet for tea, dinner, browse at a bookstore, exercise together, or go to a movie.

3.     Show Your Appreciation.  Give compliments, send thank you notes, let others know how grateful you are to have them in your life.

1.     Express love through your partner’s love-language.  Do they like words of affirmation, physical touch, receiving gifts, quality time, or acts of service?  Check out the resources relating to, “The Five Love Languages”.

4.     Practice Humility and Forgiveness.  Admit when you are wrong, apologize, and accept apologies.  This can be challenging, but it necessary to maintain happy and healthy relationships.

Remember, the most important person to have a relationship with is yourself.

Source: Dr. Julie Neal and her team at Boulder Natural Health