Why do people who are social have healthier lives?

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TL;DR

There are many long-term studies and empirical evidence that relate highly social people with happier, healthy and longer lives. “Good, close relationships appear to buffer us from the problems of getting old,” says Dr. Robert Waldinger, who is the current director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development, an ongoing analysis that’s followed more than 700 men since they were teenagers in 1938.

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Table of Contents

There are many long-term studies and empirical evidence that relate highly social people with happier, healthy and longer lives. “Good, close relationships appear to buffer us from the problems of getting old,” says Dr. Robert Waldinger, who is the current director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development, an ongoing analysis that’s followed more than 700 men since they were teenagers in 1938.

Happiness and friends

The diagram below shows data from a World Values Survey that shows the difference between levels of happiness with people who spend more time with friends or those who are more inclined to be alone.

A screenshot of a cell phone

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Its in our nature

The simplest answer to the question of why social people live happier lives is that we humans are social creatures by nature.  Some of the benefits of having relationships are that it gives us a sense of worth being in a group or belonging, being accepted as a friend or confident makes us feel more like a good person, and there is also a strong sense of security when we are part of a group.

https://www.health.harvard.edu/mental-health/can-relationships-boost-longevity-and-well-being https://ourworldindata.org/happiness-and-friends

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