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Fight off the negative effects of isolation

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A less-talked-about cause of stress is loneliness. Busy couples might rely too heavily on each other for companionship, and single people who live alone might lack outside friendships. Connecting with other people and having the support of friends is important to reduce stress.

Jeff Davidson, writing at the Association for Talent Development, offers these tips for reducing loneliness in your life.

Join a team. Physical activity is a great way to meet and interact with new people. Find a biking group, bowling team or softball league and get yourself out there.

Find a group that shares your interests. Whether it’s a diners club, Toastmasters or a pottery class, you can find a meet-up group or association that’s involved in something you love to do.

Volunteer. Find a cause that resonates with you and sign up to help. It could be Habitat for Humanity, United Way, a soup kitchen or a church group. You’ll meet new people, feel good about the work you’re doing and gain some new perspective.

The common denominator to these three strategies is that you step away from the routine and monotony that might have you in its grips. You meet new people, you gain new insights, and learn new things. You can’t help but benefit.

— Adapted from “Stay Connected to Minimize Stress,” Jeff Davidson, Association for Talent Development.

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