How to build brain-boosting social connections

Picture this. You are a student with 4.0 GPA, you have just landed an internship at JP Morgan, you are chairman of Debate Society in school. Essentially, you are the epitome of a perfect life, which begins at six in the morning with a 30-minute jog and ends after you are done painstakingly planning out events of the next day. You have it all. But there is still one element you are missing in this seemingly perfect picture.

A healthy social life. You spend so much time improving yourself that you forget about spending time with others. Socializing is a vital aspect in a community.

Not only does socialising stave off feelings of loneliness, but also it helps sharpen memory and cognitive skills and increases your sense of happiness and well-being. This may result in a longer life span too. In-person socialisation is the most ideal option, but connecting via technology also works, especially in recent times. (Williams, 2019)

Reconnecting with your friends or making new ones may seem like a time-consuming and daunting task if you are too busy or simply an introvert. But it is actually a lot simpler than you think it is. Here are 3 easy ways to boost social connections.

Quality, not quantity

The most important thing to take note of is that you should not blindly expand your social group. Instead, you should focus on forging healthy relationships and exclude those who leave you socially drained.

Women who reported high levels of social strain were more likely to experience serious heart problems over the course of 15 years than those who did not.

Find new ways to connect

There might be a misconception cultivated by Hollywood that the only way to meet new people is in parties or bars. While those are effective ways to forge new bonds, there are other communities that provide introverts opportunities to expand their social circles such as book clubs, creative courses and town-wide discussions.

Dating apps such as Tinder or Bumble are also great avenues.

Rekindle old friendships

Losing contact is an excuse of the past. With the advent of technology, all your friends are simply located at the tip of your fingers. Not everyone can have the courage to walk up to a stranger and introduce themselves, so why not take a step back and immerse yourself in nostalgia?

Reconnecting with friends who you have lost touch with is a great way to boost social connections since you already have a past to begin with. You can update each other on what you are up to now, reminisce about the good old days in school, gossip about your mutual friends… the list just goes on and on.

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