Having a strong social support system buffers the impact of everyday stresses and provides others to whom you can turn in times of need. The overall function of social support is to enhance the well-being of the person receiving the support. People who are supported are more mentally and physically healthy than people who are isolated and without supportive relationships. For example, studies have shown that happily married people generally have fewer illnesses and lower mortality rates than single (divorced, widowed, never-married) people do. And, unhappily married people have been found to have even poorer health than singles. Even studies with animals have shown that animals that were exposed to stress in the presence of their mothers or litter mates developed fewer health problems than those who were exposed to stress in isolation.
Achieving goals in any type of endeavor is always enhanced by support from others. Behind every successful person is generally at least one supporter. A parent, spouse, teacher, boss, coach, or friend can be a powerful asset in goal attainment. The information in this kit will help you assess your social support system in general and specifically related to your health and lifestyle goals. In this kit you will:
Step 1. Identify types of social support
Step 2. Develop new support systems
Step 3. Understand co-dependency