If we as a species are to thrive, we need to revitalize our natural ability to connect with one another. Our country is becoming polarized and disconnected, with more people lacking meaningful connection than ever before. This disconnect is also making us sick, literally—over 60 million Americans feel so isolated that their health is damaged in ways that mirror the effects of high blood pressure, smoking and obesity.
We all get lonely sometimes. The good news is that we are wired for connection and conversation. It helps heal not only our souls, but our cells.
What is the Connection Cure Tour?
4 years, 50 states
The connection cure is a social experiment aimed at answering this question:
What becomes possible when we look at every interaction —with friends, family, and total strangers—as an opportunity for health and wellness?
And why now?
In plain and simple terms, loneliness is making us sick.
A few facts:
- Loneliness activates our fight or flight response, which increases heart rate, contracts muscles, increases blood pressure and cholesterol, and can lead to adrenal fatigue and immune suppression.
- A 2015 meta-review of 70 studies showed that loneliness increases the risk of your chance of dying by 26 percent. link
- A 2018 nationwide Cigna study on loneliness found that nearly half of Americans “sometimes or always feel lonely.”
- And that 43% of Americans feel that their relationships are not meaningful, while 27% of Americans rarely, or never feel they are understood link
It’s no secret that we are becoming more disconnected. We are communicating more and more over social media instead of face to face. We are grocery shopping online and foregoing movie theaters for Netflix. We are forgetting that we are wired to connect, that in order to thrive we must move towards one another.
When we are disconnected we become less present leading to emotional eating, over-working, over-drinking, over-social-media-ing, over-shopping, and numbing out. We distract ourselves from delving into the deeper emotions and identifying our desire for meaningful connection.
Loneliness is a universal human emotion, but the feelings of loneliness are subjective. It does not depend on how many friends you have or how much time you spend alone, but rather the subjective quality of your relationships, whether or not you feel socially and emotionally connected to those around you.
Feeling part of is the birthplace of empathy. We are in a moment that is calling us to come together to remember what it feels like to listen, share, engage, and connect – to one another and to ourselves.
It’s time to take micro-moments of connection macro, so we can deepen our relationship to ourselves, and our communities.