image of friends hiking

Today, I’m inspired to write about the benefits of friendships because of my long-time best friend. She’s there for me no matter what. We first met while training for a long-distance running event. There’s nothing like running together for hours at a time over four months of training to get to know someone! And even though we now live many miles apart, we still make the time to email or chat a few times each week, and we get together in person when we can because our friendship is that important.

It’s incredible how many things we all tend to keep bottled up, waiting for our friends to listen and support us. Sometimes we don’t even have to say anything. We can decompress and feel better by simply sharing time together, whether walking or quietly watching nature. And I am thankful for that.

Research supports this. The Mayo Clinic reports that in addition to being good for your health, friends can also:

  • increase your sense of belonging and purpose
  • boost your happiness and reduce your stress
  • improve your self-confidence and self-worth
  • and more.

When you work in a stressful environment, having a co-worker friend can help lower stress and brighten your mood. Spending time with friends can even reduce the risk of depression and high blood pressure. Each time we spend a few minutes “venting” to a friend, we’re reminded that we’re not alone. Our friends encourage and lift us back to a place of optimism and gratitude, and we do the same thing for them.

For nurses, this can be especially true. In a MedPageToday article, one nurse practitioner stated that “only nurses understand what other nurses truly go through.” One study referenced in the report found that the “degree of cohesion among friends had a positive impact on the level of job stress experienced by nurses.” Having a good friend at work can greatly increase job satisfaction and engagement, no matter where you work.

Remember to nurture your friendships so that it’s a two-way street. Take time to listen to your friends when they need to vent. Be there for them like they are for you. In this way, you’re giving back, which automatically takes your mind off your own problems and makes you feel better. It’s a win-win.

Is there something you can do today to reach out and make a friend smile? Take the time to do that now. You’ll both feel better!

Research shows that group coaching sessions provide benefits for each member of the group. A 2020 study titled Emotional Freedom Techniques on nurses’ stress, anxiety, and burnout levels during the COVID-19 pandemic: a randomized controlled trial reports that “a single online group EFT session reduced stress, anxiety, and burnout levels in nurses treating COVID-19.”

If you’re interested in group EFT tapping sessions, let’s talk. And please pass this information along to anyone who could use it. ⁠

EFT is easy to learn, easy to use, and it works.

Please remember: It's important to contact a professional if things feel too big for you, whether it be a physician, psychologist, psychiatrist, or certified EFT practitioner. Never discontinue your current medications without first consulting your doctor.