The MOST Important Way To Improve Your Health
What is the best change you can make?
What do you think is the single most important change you could make to improve your health?
🚬Quit the cigarettes?
🍸Turn down the cocktail?
👟Put on your running shoes?
The correct answer is: Improve the quality of your relationships.
In fact, people who have great relationships live on average 8 years longer, according to a PLoS Medicine study on “Social Relationships and Mortality Risk.”
They are so important to our human wellbeing that during COVID, Iceland’s government asked quarantined citizens who were feeling lonely to go outside and hug some trees.🌳
Sounds crazy, right?
But hugging a pet, a person, and yes – even a tree – signals the pituitary gland (a bean-shaped gland at the base of your brain) to release the “love hormone” oxytocin. 🤗
The release of oxytocin provides a multitude of benefits. It’s very calming, helps reduce blood pressure and cortisol levels, and helps us regulate our emotions and bond with others.
At work, we want to release this chemical to create strong bonds and trust with our co-workers … but without bear-hugging them to get it!
Here are the first two of what I call the “Ten Commandments of Great Work Relationships,” from my book, “The Brain-Friendly Workplace.”
𝗖𝗼𝗺𝗺𝗮𝗻𝗱𝗺𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝟭: 𝗜𝗥𝗟 𝗠𝗮𝘁𝘁𝗲𝗿𝘀:
The moment you shake hands with someone in real life, oxytocin will be released in both your brains. If you can meet someone in person – it really does help you bond. You don’t have to schedule in person-meetings, but if you choose not to, just be mindful that it DOES have an impact whether you meet in person or not.
𝗖𝗼𝗺𝗺𝗮𝗻𝗱𝗺𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝟮: 𝗚𝗲𝘁 𝗜𝘁 𝗥𝗶𝗴𝗵𝘁 𝗶𝗻 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗕𝗲𝗴𝗶𝗻𝗻𝗶𝗻𝗴:
When we first meet someone, we feel a warm surge of oxytocin. This softens us up a bit and makes us more flexible and open. But use that moment wisely. Habits are already being established by the second meeting. Make sure they are habits you want to establish.