“Good relationships keep us happier and healthier. Period.” — Robert Waldinger, director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development. This was a conclusion of a study that took over 75 years by Harvard’s Grant and Glueck study.
“The biggest predictor of your happiness and fulfillment overall in life is, basically, love.” Melanie Curtin reported on Inc. And, if you have healthy relationships, your chances of survival increase by 50%. Nearly everything in life is impacted by WHO is around you, and how those people support you.
During Childhood, undergoing a trauma, for example, is not about what happens to you, but about what happens “inside” of you, according to Dr. Gabor. i.e. if you go through a terribly horrible experience and you have someone there to help you process it, you’ll likely recover quickly. If you don’t, you’ll internalize it, isolate yourself, and that trauma will turn into a lifetime of pain.
Healthy relationships, then, could help you avoid addiction, overcome life’s challenges, you reach higher than you could on your own.
“Social relationships, or the relative lack thereof, constitute a major risk factor for health — rivaling the effect of well established health risk factors such as cigarette smoking, blood pressure, blood lipids, obesity and physical activity.” As authors House, Landis, and Umberson stated in their article in SCIENCE
“You can give without loving, but you can’t love without giving.” — John Wooden
Brad Pitt once provided the most beautiful evidence of the science of gratitude and giving. Check out this love letter Brad wrote to Angie several years ago:
“My wife got sick. She was constantly nervous because of problems at work, personal life, her failures and problems with children.
She had lost 30 pounds and weighed about 90 pounds in her 35 years. She got very skinny, and was constantly crying. She was not a happy woman. She had suffered from continuing headaches, heart pain and jammed nerves in her back and ribs.
She did not sleep well, falling asleep only in the morning and got tired very quickly during the day. Our relationship was on the verge of break up.
Her beauty was leaving her somewhere, she had bags under her eyes, she was poking her head, and stopped taking care of herself. She refused to shoot the films and rejected any role.
I lost hope and thought that we’ll get divorced soon…But then I decided to act on it. After all I’ve got the most beautiful woman on the earth…
I began to pamper her with flowers, kisses and compliments. I surprised her and pleased her every minute. I gave her lots of gifts and lived just for her. I spoke in public only about her. I incorporated all themes in her direction. I praised her in front of her own and our mutual friends.
You won’t believe it, but she blossomed. She became even better than before. She gained weight, was no longer nervous and she loved me even more than ever.
I had no clue that she CAN love that much. And then I realized one thing: The woman is the reflection of her man. If you love her to the point of madness, she will become it.”
This works. However, relationships aren’t a quick-fix thing. You have got to stick to these incredible practices of giving and gratitude or the relationships will stop being transformational. It will die.
Living For Something Beyond Yourself
“For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side-effect of one’s personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one’s surrender to a person other than oneself.” — Viktor Frankl
Great power is not what creates great responsibility. Instead, great responsibility is what creates power.
The writer says: “When my wife and I became foster parents of three kids a few years, our lives changed. We had something bigger depending on us. We had to rise to the occasion.”
According to what psychologists call, “The pygmalion effect,” you as a person either rise or fall to the demands of your situation. If your situation doesn’t demand much, you won’t rise up.
Having other people depend on you is a beautiful thing. It’s the pressure that will turn you into a diamond. It will cause you to dig deep within yourself, and overcome the addictions and bad habits holding you back.
You have so much more to live for now.
In the digital world we now live in, it’s not about the amount of hours you work, but the amount of thought and humanity you put into your work.
The deeper and more transformative your daily experiences, the more perspective you’ll have into what the world needs, the better you’ll be at your job, the happier you’ll be as a person —despite hardships you may experience throughout life.
When you have people around you who love and help you, you become a different and better person. You become transformed. You become capable of doing amazing things. You are enabled to overcome hardships that would destroy most people.
Do you have deep and loving relationships?
Have you expressed gratitude lately?
Have you given your greatest gifts in complete love and generosity?