Wellbeing and health topics giving you a new perspective, with great tips and advice for living a full, healthy and happy life.
After coming back from a wonderful holiday with some very beautiful friends and it made me think about the real importance of friendship in my life and what this means to me and to my wellbeing. it also made me think about how important friendship and social networks are as we get older and the huge benefit this can bring in terms of support, care, socialising and a feeling of belonging (something I think is a fundamental desire in all of us). It also made me think about loneliness and isolation, what it might feel like if we don’t have any friends or family, with no one to reach out to or hold on to or just spend time with. I cannot imagine it, and hopefully will never experience it, but as we get older, this is what can happen and does happen to a lot of people.
People living on their own is on the increase There were 2.43 million 45 to 64-year-olds living on their own in the UK in 2017 which has been attributed to a higher proportion of middle-aged people who are divorced, single or have never married. The number of people aged 75 and over who are living alone has increased by around a quarter in the past 20 years, from 1.78 million to 2.21 million. This is likely to be because of the death of a spouse or partner and our increasing ageing population. Studies have shown that as we get older our friendships decline in number and it has been suggested that older adults actively withdraw from their network, perhaps as a result of declining physical health or loss of roles through retirement. This withdrawal and decline in health can then lead to loneliness and isolation and a separation from society. Loneliness is painful. But it can be prevented and building and cultivating our social networks and friendships is crucial.
What Exercising Regularly For a Year Has Done For Me
Sitting down for too many hours a day, and not being active can seriously damage our health. Maybe not now, but in the future. A lack of physical activity is linked to obesity, muscle weakness, poor heart health and so much more. It can lead to feeling sluggish, tired, lethargic, a low mood and can exacerbate feelings of depression and anxiety. Your body will get stiffer and weaker and your joints will start to suffer. But reading this and knowing it’s probably true, will probably not get you to exercise. Like smoking…the warning images on the cigarette packets do not stop people from smoking!
I used to sit down a lot. I have struggled to maintain my weight (I like my food) and I’ve struggled to stay motivated to exercise. I am not one to be getting up at 5am in the morning to go out for a run or get to the gym before work. I procrastinate and I make excuses. I find every reason I can think of to put it off and hear myself saying time and again “I’ll start tomorrow or next week”. I might burn a few calories off shopping or going for a walk now and again, but I know, as we all do, I wasn’t doing enough.
Be a Change Warrior
There is an undeniable constant in our lives…. change. Some of us fear it, or just don’t like it. It can be unsettling, and adjusting to change can be hard when it is forced upon us. Change can be a loss in our lives or it can be a gain. When it’s a loss, it can be hard to come to terms with. When it’s a gain, or we are in control of the change happening, we welcome it wholeheartedly, particularly if it’s something we have wanted.
Whether it’s a desired change or a forced one, seeing it as positive and as a steer for bettering our lives, can help us navigate through difficult periods of change and adjust easier and quicker to it.
I am an advocate of change, I have become a change warrior. I have learnt to expect it and embrace it. I have become more adaptable and pliable and use it as an impetus or seed for growth and strength. I don’t deny that sometimes it scares me and challenges my whole being but I know, ultimately it is moving me forward to where I need to be going.
Change keeps us from being stuck, it helps to move us forward, teaches us lessons, shakes us up, stops us from being complacent and stagnant. Change is natural, it’s how we evolve. It is a force of nature. There is, I believe, an underlying law of the universe which creates collisions of energy throughout our lives, some of this energy is manifested by us, some is the impact of others and their actions.