Oprah starts this chapter by saying that "Whether you're a mother in Topeka or a businesswoman in Philadelphia, each of us, at our core, longs to be loved, needed, understood, affirmed -- to have intimate connections that leave us feeling more alive and human". Throughout this chapter, Oprah emphasizes the fact that a basic human need is a desire for mutually empathic and empowering connection with others.
According to Emma Seppala, People who feel more connected to others have lower rates of anxiety and depression, higher self-esteem, are more empathetic to others and are more trusting and cooperative. Social connectedness therefore generates a positive feedback loop of social, emotional and physical well-being. All of us need other people in order to be well and thrive. We feel better just being around other people. And we need close relationships in order to be happy.
When reading this chapter of Oprah's book, I was particularly touched by the following ideas or statements regarding connection:
"A lack of intimacy is not distance from someone else; it is disregard for yourself."
"If you don't already know that you have worth, there's nothing your friends, your family, or your mate can say that will completely convince you of that."
"You are the one best mother, father, sister, friend, cousin, and lover you will ever have."
"Look inward -- the loving begins with you."
"The key to any relationship is communication."
"Everything happens for a reason"
"Love is all around."
To know that people care about how you're doing when the doing isn't so good -- that's what love is.
Without any doubt, this was another inspirational chapter, filled with powerful statements about relationships and connection. So, I decided to do a little online search about the importance of connection in our lives. I found many interesting things and here is one finding regarding connection that I like to include in this post.
Some scientists have have found that people are happier when they are with other people than when they are alone—and the “boost” is the same for introverts and extroverts. It appears that happy people are more pleasant, helpful, and sociable.
So being around people makes us feel happier, and when we are happier we are more fun to be around, creating an “upward spiral” of happiness.
What do you think about this? How important is connection in your live?