We are social creatures. Our brains are wired to connect with other people, to bring people in to our lives and to engage with them. Even tiny babies do this. We can notice them looking to get our attention.
We know that time spent with others can help us to feel part of something, something bigger than ourselves. It can help our lives feel more meaningful when we connect with others. If we have shared interests and ideas we can grow and develop in these interests with someone else or a group of people.
At times of worry or stress, connecting with others can help us to feel like we are not alone, that our worries can be shared and we don't need to fix everything ourselves. We know that sharing our worry with someone else can make it feel less worrying, that we can get another perspective or ideas that can help us to sort it out. Sometimes people can take on some of the worry so that it becomes a joint problem to resolve.
Being connected with like minded people can help us to feel supported. It can help us to go beyond what we might do ourselves. If for example we believe in something and others share our views we are more likely to be able to act or to make a difference by taking action together. There's certainly something powerful about a group working together to get things done or make changes.
There are some things that are just more fun with other people. Having things in common, seeing the funny side of things and sharing experiences with another person can make our lives more enjoyable. It can help us form the fabric of who we are when we share experiences with others, developing a shared history. Others can be like a mirror to us that we see ourselves reflected in.
Research also tells us that social connections are important. Simply having a cup of tea with someone or having a chat over the neighbour's fence can do a lot to help people feel healthier and less isolated in their day to day lives. As our world become busier and more complex it's these simple things that we can go back to that really make a difference.
Feeling connected is therefore very important for us to feel positive in ourselves and in our own daily life. While we might balance time with others with time on our own and busy time, we know that we will feel more positive when connections with others are a core part of our lives.