Building Strong Relationships and Communities for a Fulfilling Life
By Dr. Ebi Ofrey CEO GeroCare
Today, I’m going to discuss social ties, which are crucial for all of us, but especially for our elderly loved ones. It involves more than simply healthy food and exercise. Yes, having strong communities and relationships is essential to living a successful life.
Now, I am aware of your possible thoughts. “But I’m retired, my children are adults, and all of my former friends have relocated or have passed on. What kind of social relationships am I expected to have?” Here’s the problem, though. It’s never too late to meet new people and develop new relationships. In Nigeria, community and hospitality have a long and illustrious history. So, let’s use that as a springboard to build solid connections and communities that will sustain us on all levels.
Let’s start by discussing the advantages of social ties or social connections. Did you know that research has demonstrated that those with strong social ties not only experience greater happiness but also better health and longer lifespans? We are less likely to suffer from depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions when we have individuals in our life who genuinely care about us. Also, we’re more inclined to take good care of our bodies by eating healthfully, exercising, and getting enough sleep.
What is the best way to go about creating these connections? Obviously, the first step is to extend a hand. Don’t be hesitant to make the first move, whether it’s to introduce yourself to a new neighbor or an old buddy you haven’t spoken to in a while. People can be quite welcoming and open, which could surprise you. There are lots of local groups and clubs that can assist you get started if you’re feeling hesitant or bashful. There is something for everyone, including religious organizations, hobby clubs, and volunteer organizations.
It’s crucial to cultivate any new friendships you make afterward. It entails maintaining contact, demonstrating an interest in other people’s life, and being prepared to help when required. Also, it entails being frank and vulnerable in return, sharing your own successes and setbacks with others. Bonds that can last a lifetime are formed when we are able to connect on a deeper level.
Let’s not overlook our family members while we’re talking about ties that last a lifetime. Many of us consider our children and grandchildren to be among the most significant individuals in our life. Therefore, don’t be reluctant to contact them and maintain a connection. They’ll value your attempt to stay involved even if they’re busy with their own life.
Finally, the importance of community. In Nigeria, communal life has a long history. People gather to help one another out in good and difficult times. The sense of being a part of a community, whether it be through religious organizations, neighborhood associations, or casual get-togethers with friends, is unlike anything else.