The Value of Girlfriends

artsy piece of woman

In an evening class at Stanford University, the last lecture was on the mind-body connection – the relationship between stress and disease. The speaker (head of psychiatry at Stanford) said that one of the best things a man could do for his health was to be married to a woman. But, for a woman, one of the best things she could do for her health was to nurture her relationships with her girlfriends. 

At first, everyone laughed, but he was serious. Women connect with each other differently and provide support systems that help each other to deal with stress and difficult life experiences. Physically this quality “girlfriend time” creates more serotonin – a neurotransmitter that helps combat depression and create a general feeling of well-being. Women share feelings whereas men often form relationships around activities. We share from our souls with our sisters, friends, and family. Evidently, that is VERY GOOD for our health.

He said that spending time with a friend is just as important to our general health as jogging or working out at a gym. There’s a tendency to think that when we are “exercising” we are doing something good for our bodies, but – when we are hanging out with friends – we are wasting our time and should be more productively engaged. Not true! In fact, the failure to create and maintain quality personal relationships with other humans is as dangerous to our physical health as smoking! So every time you hang out to schmooze with a gal pal, just pat yourself on the back and congratulate yourself for doing something good for your health!

We are indeed very, very blessed! So let’s toast to our friendships with our girlfriends (including grandmas, sisters, mothers, nieces, cousins, aunties, etc ). Thanks to all the women in my life who have helped me stay healthy and feeling loved.


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