How Sharing Is Good for Your Health

kindergartenIf you're starting to feel really bummed about the state of the world, get thee to a kindergarten class. Little kids sharing crayons, cookies, and construction paper to make you turn off the crank and walk off happy. It's just like your first teacher taught you:

Sharing is good for the world ... and it's good for you too. Come on, stop rolling your eyes. Think positive. It might make you feel better:


Sharing a Hug: Just a 20-second hug can boost your oxytocin levels, sometimes called the "hormone of love." It can even help reduce your risk of heart disease, slowing down your blood pressure and reducing stress. So throw your arms out and catch something good.

Sharing Your Time: It's no coincidence that states with higher rates of volunteerism also boast higher rates of healthy citizens. Giving up a little bit of your time to help out someone else feels good all over. And sometimes it gets YOU hugs!

Sharing a Laugh: Ever sat in a waiting room reading a book that gave you the giggles and wondered if people think you're weird for it? Don't just sit there; tell the story. Laughter has been proven to burn calories, improve blood flow, boost the immune system, and on and on. Give someone all that, and it will come back to you: there's nothing like one giggle share to start a gigglefest.

Sharing Your Life: There's nothing wrong with being single, but if you're still debating whether to open your heart up to someone, there's no time like the present. Being in a (good, solid) relationship begets happiness ... which in turn has a host of health benefits.

Sharing Information: Ever wonder how teachers can go home happy when you'd be tearing your hair out after a day with 30 screaming kids? Helping someone improve their life makes you feel good. So volunteer ... or get online and help spread the word about important causes.

Sharing Your Cookies: Stop hoarding those Thin Mints! Sharing the love is good for your waistline.

What do you share?


Image via woodleywonderworks/Flickr

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