According to a 2000 UCLA study on friendship among women, it’s the brain chemicals that cause women to make and maintain friendships with other women as a way of responding to stress.
One of the authors of the study, Dr Laura Cousin Klein, told Gal Berkowitz who reviewed the study that, when the hormone oxytocin is released as part of a woman's stress responses, it buffers the fight-or-flight mechanism, and encourages her to tend children and gather with other women.
Basically, good friends provide a level of understanding and communication that positively affects your health, wellness and attitude.
So let’s look at those from the various studies about friendship:
- People who had no friends increased their risk of death over a 6-month period.
- Those who had the most friends over a 9-year period cut their risk of death by more than 60%.
- Friends help us to live better.
- The more friends’ women have, the less likely they were to develop physical impairments as they aged.
- The more likely they were to be leading a joyful life.
- Even in the face of this biggest stressor of all, those women who had a close friend and confidante are more likely to survive the experience without any new physical impairments or permanent loss of vitality.
Now that’s goodness for women. The question is how do you make friends?
Let’s face it if you don’t have your childhood friends this can be pretty difficult as a grown up. I mean it’s not like you can just walk up to a stranger, introduce yourself, and go play like you did at the primary school.
But those studies we can see that it is important for women to have close meaningful relationships with each other.
Here are the six way to make friends:
- Volunteer at Church. I have personally learned that the best way to meet people of the same mind is at Church. Off course they don’t have everything in common with me but they do provide the basic spiritual needs.
- Join social networks such a Facebook. Not everyone on Facebook is fake. You can meet pretty cool people here if you search well.
- If you are in a new neighbourhood, introduce yourself to your immediate neighbours.
- Don’t be shy to talk to people in a taxi, grocery story or at an event. But please don’t brag or over do it. Most of all listen to what they have to say and enjoy their presence.
- Reconnect with old acquaintances and friends from school. Keep in mind that people change and might have different priorities. So pray about everything and led the Spirit of God lead you.
- Connect with your co-workers. It’s nice to hook up with co-workers because during working hours it’s difficult. Go for dinners or hook up over the weekend for drinks.
Proverbs 17:17 says, " A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity".
What's been your experience in making friends when as an adult. Share your advice with us in the comments!