April 5, 2017
by Crystal R. Mendoza Paulin
Homo sapiens are by nature social creatures. Humans, for the most part, have a physical and mental need to interact with other social beings. In fact, studies have consistently shown that social interaction is vital for mental health decreasing stress levels and abating depression. Many of us are aware of ways to keep our bodies healthy but overlook the needs of our brains. Here are some tips to feed your emotional hunger:
1. Get Yourself a SidekickI personally think we should all be provided with a familiar at birth for companionship. Will Smith and his canine companion from I Am Legend. Photo courtesy of Warner Bros.
Social interaction is only as good as the people you associate with. You don't need a whole squad to feed your emotional hunger; spending time with your favorite person does the trick! So grab a best friend and schedule some quality time together. The key is consistency, even a brunch once a month makes a difference.
Hate people? I don't blame you, friend. Luckily humans have selectively bred certain species to provide you with all of the love and loyalty you could ever want. In other words, adopt a pet, sit back, and enjoy the cuddles.
2. Join a ClubFight the patriarchy! Jared Leto and Edward Norton in Fight Club. Photo courtesy of Fox 2000 Pictures.
Haven't found a reliable emotional support squad? Signing up for a club or class is a great way to meet new people and consistently fill up on social interactions. You don't have to join a yoga class if that's not your thing. Hit up a billiards bar, join a bowling team, try out a book club, or dominate your Homeowner's Association or Parent Teacher Association and roll your eyes at Becky and her weak attempt at brownies.
The important thing is to go out and meet people with mutual interests and have a good time while doing it!
3. Bring People to YouDon't care for the outdoors? Same. Darth Vader welcoming Han Solo in Empire Strikes Back. Photo courtesy of Lucasfilms.
I get it, sometimes it's just too much effort to go out. So make people come to you instead! Throw a killer dinner party, host Sunday brunch, or order in pizza and settle in for a movie night with friends and family.
Caring for yourself extends beyond diet and exercise, you have to care for your mental health too. Spending more time with the people that care about you might be just what the doctor ordered.
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