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January 2018 Mall Walker Newsletter

Make a Friend

Close friends can have a positive impact on health and well-being. Research indicates that strong social connections support longer lives, decrease the chance of catching a cold, increase longevity in breast cancer and heart attack patients, and reduce the incidence of heart disease and immune problems.

Alternately, a lack of social connections is associated with higher levels of depression, cognitive decline and shorter lives.

Try these tips to make new friends or strengthen existing relationships.

•Increase your contacts with others.
•Volunteer or join a church or club.
•Make yourself available. You may be busy, but make the effort to set aside time and make plans to connect with others.
•Be kind.
•Be a good listener. Others realize you care when you take time to pay attention and show empathy.
•Be reliable. Demonstrate that you can be counted on to show up on time, follow through on commitments, and keep private conversations confidential.
•Start a tradition. Relationships are built through repetitive activities such as monthly dinners, weekly coffee dates, or daily walks. Over time, these plans become part of what is shared and built on in the course of a friendship.

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