• Hazelden Renewal Center

Social Phobia: When You’re Too Scared to Show Your Inner Life to Others

I hate being in a group of people I don’t know. If I can find a way to get out of such gatherings I will. My mind gets nuts with anxiety. I fear that I will be seen as abnormal—that people can see my flaws. My voice usually cracks, sweat pours off my forehead, and I have a hard time thinking of what I want to say. I wish I could be cool like my brother—the golden boy—who can walk into a room and have everybody eating out of his hand. It’s so easy for him; so dreadfully hard for … Continue reading

Social Integration Will Add Years to Your Life

young adults interacting

Smile and say hello to a random stranger today — social integration and personal relationships lead to longevity. Face-to-face connection releases a whole cascade of neurotransmitters that reduces stress, including dopamine, a neurotransmitter that helps give you a natural high and may relieve pain. It’s been found through various long-term studies that the top two predictors of living a long life are social integration and close relationships. Social Integration means interacting with everyone you come into contact with such as the barista, grocery clerk, a stranger, and people in your neighborhood. Close relationships may be the people that you can … Continue reading