Why Do Friends and Family Make Us Happy?

For better and for worse, family relationships play a central role in shaping our well-being. Spending time with supportive family and friends can give us support to cope better with stress, boost our mood, and enhance our self-esteem.  This all leads to a higher well-being and more happiness.

Firstly, when we are surrounded by people that we trust and that support us, we feel happier because we feel supported.  When we are around these people, we feel happier. Additionally, we find healthier ways to cope with stress. Just knowing that support is there makes difficult times easier. A study found that people who viewed their friends and family as supportive had more meaning to their lives, and felt a larger purpose.

Friends and Family Can…

Friends and family prevent us from being lonely and isolated, feeling better and happier. Friends can also:

– Increase your sense of belonging and purpose

– Boost your happiness and reduce your stress

– Improve your self-confidence and self-worth

– Help you cope with trauma; family divorce, friendship problems, school drama, illness in the family, 

– Encourage you to avoid unhealthy lifestyle habits

This all leads to living a longer and healthier life

Fun fact: when you are less stressed, your body works better. Your memory improves, and there is less wear and tear on your body from additional worry. 

Our Health

Being around friends can be also really good for our cardiovascular health, including the organs that work with and around the heart. When we’re stressed out, there is more encouragement for inflammation in our arteries. This can lead to our arteries clogging, and blood flow will not be good. As stated before, when surrounded by people that we love and care about, our stress levels go down, which decreases the chances of this happening. Additionally, according to a study published in the Annals of Behavioural Medicine, people who were around friends during difficult times in their lives were reported to have lower blood pressure rates as well as a lower pulse. 


Here are a few ways to spend more time together as a family, or to spend time with friends outside of school:

– Go to the mall with your mom or with one of your friends.

– Do household chores with a family member and catch up on life.

– During a car ride talk about what’s new in your life and ask your friend/family member.

– Go to get ice cream with a sibling or a friend that loves sweet treats.

– Go to the movie theatre with a sibling or parent or friend.

– Spend some time outdoors on a walk with your dog and family, or a neighborhood friend.

– Call a friend that never has time to hang out.

Overall, spending more time with positive friends and family is really good for you and your body. Try to make room in your day to socialize and talk to your parents, family and friends to nurture those relationships of support and grow that overall well-being.  

We hope that this inspires you to spend more time with friends and family who make you feel happy and supported.


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For more happiness check out our Mood Boost page.

Featuring quick videos created for teens by teens.