Everyone has a family, no matter what it looks like — a family can be traditional and nuclear, but it can also be about found family and coming together with those who love you, no matter what that group looks like. Regardless of who you call your family, they obviously play a large role in your happiness, and though you may not know it, that can have an impact on your health, too.
Your mind and body are connected, which means your social interactions and those you surround yourself with can do a lot for your health. Humans are social beings, and while that can make a case for communing with others and working together towards common goals, it also makes the case for healthy community and familial support. Even in small ways, your family is important to your health, and there are so many ways that being around your family can make you a healthier person. Here are just a few of those ways.
One of the biggest contributors to overall quality of life is happiness. While it may sound simple, it’s simple because it’s true. Sometimes, having people around that you love and care about to have fun and laugh together can get you through anything and make daily life much better. While family is important for the rough times and the dark moments, it can be easy to forget how much they enhance your life during the good times by bringing happiness to everyone involved. Being able to laugh together is important, both to your health and to your happiness.
While friends and acquaintances can offer support when you’re going through something difficult, there’s nothing quite like the support of a family when you really need someone in your corner. Families stand by one another through recoveries, losses, financial troubles, breakups and all kinds of trials and tribulations. Unconditional love is no joke, and whether you find it in your found family or your nuclear family, it’s still just as strong and just as necessary. Stress can take a toll on your health, and when you’re going through a stressful life event, the love and support of those who care about you can truly do wonders for your emotional and physical health.
It’s true — humans are social creatures. Even those who are introverts need community and support around them. Perhaps not everybody enjoys going to parties or jumping on large group phone calls, but knowing that you have the safety and security of a caring support system around you can foster a sense of safety and security that’s good for your emotional well being. Plus, healthy interaction with those you know and love is much less pressure than interaction with friends or strangers, and it can help you find a healthy balance.
Yes, family support is deeply important when times are tough, but family encouragement and motivation can be just as important when things are going well. You’re probably well aware by now of the importance of self care, but what about caring for those around you? And being cared for by those around you? One of the great things families can do for one another is offering encouragement, kindness and care throughout life — not just when the chips are down. Motivating one another to do things that are important and offering affirmations of encouragement can do wonders for your emotional health and progression in life.
When it comes to direct impacts on physical health, family can be important in so many ways you may not realize. When you exist communally with others, you get into habits together naturally, and those habits are likely to be healthier when you have others in mind rather than simply fending for yourself. Even things as simple as cooking and having family meals together, spending time engaging with one another away from the screens, going outdoors, exercising together and keeping a regular sleep schedule throughout the whole household are examples of the health that family can encourage. Each member of a family can work to set positive examples for one another, and when you do, the momentum can continue to keep you all going.
Being a part of a family really does encourage your health in so many ways, especially if you’re intentional about it. While you may not see it when you’re up close, taking a step back and assessing your situation can help you appreciate all that you and your family do for one another. From physical health to emotional and social well being, there are so many things that families do to help one another out all the time. From encouraging healthy habits in the house to offering unconditional love and support when times get tough, there’s no love like family love, no matter what your family looks like.