We live in a culture where making decent money working overtime at a job you only slightly enjoy determines our level of success. We often reject plans because we’re “so busy” and “too tired,” rescheduling in a futile attempt to proclaim that, yes, we are still fun! when in reality, both parties involved know that those plans will never come to fruition. How many times have you participated in the following exchange?

“How are you? I haven’t seen you in forever!”

“I know! It’s been too long.”

 “We need to change that ASAP. Lunch soon?”

“Yes please!”

End scene. While it may seem harmless or even responsible to put your social life on the back burner in favor of getting extra work done or taking the night to relax alone, recognizing the importance of social interaction in terms of your emotional health could lead to increased happiness as well as longevity. Taking time a few days a week to connect with friends, either individually or as part of a group, can have as small of an effect as reducing the number of colds you experience a year to adding months to your life. It’s easy to recognize eating well and exercising as critical health benefits, but why should enjoying time with others be a frivolous activity? Next time you opt to stay late at the office or resort to a TV marathon, get up, get out, and give these social activities a try:


For the Literature Lover: A book club is an effortless place to meet people, but it’s easy to fall into the rut of skimming the book for one or two important topics to bring up every week, or showing up once every four months, if at all. Challenge yourself to be a little more involved by joining a writing meet-up. These groups meet weekly to read each other’s works-in-progress and offer constructive feedback in a relaxed setting. You’ll expose yourself to a variety of personalities and writing styles while tapping into your own creative side, and it’s exciting to speak productively with a group who is mutually interested in the topic at hand. Who knows, maybe you’ll finally get around to finishing your novel!


For the Foodie: Catching up with a friend over appetizers and cocktails can be relaxing, but a weekly dose of calamari and sugary concoctions can’t be doing your waistline any favors. Pick a day or evening with a favorable forecast and arrange to meet for a picnic at a nearby park. One friend brings the homemade hummus and veggies, the other brings the chilled lemon and mint water, and you both chat and snack on the solitude of your own blanket. Not only will you save some money, but the outdoors-y atmosphere might just inspire a post-picnic stroll. Fresh air and friends, what more could you need?


For the Traveler: Downloading language software and half-heartedly repeating vocabulary back to the automated voice on the comfort of your couch might seem like a peaceful way to become bilingual, but how much are you really getting out of it? Studies show that practicing a new language face-to-face with someone else—either a fellow student or a native speaker—can help you become almost entirely fluent in as quickly as three months. A fellow student will understand the progress you are making while a native speaker can help you adapt to nuances in the language that can be difficult to teach. Either way, your interaction with another while developing a skill will simultaneously stimulate the social and cognitive sections of your brain, aiding in enhanced brain function even when you’re not running through the parts of speech.


For the Up-For-Anything: If you’re trying to expand your social circle in any way, head to your nearest community newsletter, close your eyes, point, and go. Many communities have event calendars listed online which describe events for almost every night of the week, many of which are free. Fun events in the local park, recreation center, or church can range from dance classes to political discussions, and all foster a sense of neighborhood kinship with lively interaction. If you didn’t enjoy learning to salsa or the debate got too heated for your taste, pick something else next week. These lists are never at a loss for keeping you active and involved.


When you feel that you are part of a group, you’re more likely to contribute to it. We often misconstrue loneliness for depression and “cure” our unhappiness with a pill, when really all it could take would be a casual get together with a few friends. Making an effort to connect with others and potentially try something new will have a positive impact on both your social life and your emotional health, so step away from your remote control and say a firm “Yes” to those last minute brunch plans. You have nothing to lose, and lots of life to gain.

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Yuve is a New York City based brand of premium natural health products. Its goal is to provide a natural solution for busy people to maintain a complete diet without compromising on time. Made from non-GMO plant-based ingredients, Yuve’s wholesome products help improving overall health and natural beauty. Yuve has a complete nutritional profile. It contains high amount of plant-based protein, fiber, digestive enzymes, low sugar, very low fat, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and anti-aging agents.

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