Have you ever received a standing ovation?
Imagine what good it would do in your life.
It’s an odd idea, but we beg you to ponder it. It just may add years to your life… happy years.
You see, we were recently invited to a bit of a ceremony. A good friend of ours and a fellow volunteer was hanging up his hat.
At 79 years old, he’s no longer able to do the sort of active work that we get into.
When the event’s host called him onstage, he rattled off some impressive figures.
In all, he had given up more than 5,500 hours of his time. That’s the equivalent of two years of full-time work… entirely unpaid.
But just because our pal didn’t get paid doesn’t mean he didn’t get anything out of giving back.
“I’m 79 years old,” he told the wet-eyed crowd, “but I feel like I’m 40. I’m convinced it’s because of all of this and all of you.”
What happened after that is something I’d never seen before. His former coworkers lined the stage wanting to share their praise for this great man.
The stories were grand.
Voices cracked. Eyes were rubbed. And wonderful things were said about a man who did a lot and gave a lot.
When all the praise was done and it was time for our boy to climb off the stage, the audience took to its feet. It put together an applause that few men will experience in their lives.
It still fills our ears.
What it must have done for that man’s spirit is immeasurable.
But it’s what it likely did for his health that is flat-out incredible.
The New Cancer
Our Triad aims directly at three powerful things.
Master your Liberty, Know-How and Connections and you’ll be happier, healthier and far more successful in all things you do.
The science is undeniable.
But there’s new research that proves our Connections are far more linked to our good health than most folks ever thought possible.
It’s no secret our culture is fighting a loneliness crisis.
Despite technology that links us together like never before, folks are more disconnected from their friends, family and colleagues than ever.
And as it turns out… it’s killing us.
In an article for Harvard Business Review, former Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy wrote, “Loneliness and weak social connections are associated with a reduction in life span similar to that caused by smoking 15 cigarettes a day and even greater than that associated with obesity.”
That needs repeating.
Loneliness does as much harm to our body as smoking nearly a pack of cigarettes a day.
And it’s worse than being grossly overweight.
And it’s not just one or two docs sounding the alarm about this new social cancer.
In another study we dug into, folks who felt lonely fared worse in all manner of ailments. Loneliness, in fact, was associated with a doubled mortality risk in women and a nearly doubled risk in men.
“Loneliness is a strong predictor of premature death, worse mental health and lower quality of life in patients with cardiovascular disease, and a much stronger predictor than living alone, in both men and women,” said Anne Vinggaard Christensen, the Ph.D. student behind the study.
And just as we’d expect, the folks at Big Pharma are working on a cure.
That’s right… a pill for loneliness.
If the researchers behind it can make it happen, docs will soon be prescribing a pill that helps eliminate the harmful physiological effects of losing our Connections.
That’s not just dumb… it’s insane.
But it makes sense. Loneliness is quietly becoming one of America’s deadliest diseases… so why not make a fortune from it?
Fortunately, there’s another solution.
It’s far better.
Our friend above proves it.
Thanks to his volunteering efforts, he didn’t need a pill to keep him happy and healthy.
He had a strong network of Connections who cared about him, helped him and gave him the applause of a lifetime as he bowed before them.
It helped keep him healthy and active while many of his peers have suffered a much more grave fate.
It’s why we volunteer between 200 and 300 hours each year. It’s a sacrifice. It pulls us away from our homes, our businesses and our hobbies.
But it’s exercise for a part of our soul that gets far too little attention.
We’d be lying if we said we gave up our time only to help others. Yes, that’s a big part of it. We’re quite proud of what we’ve accomplished with our work and have the awards on the wall to remind us.
But if we’re honest with ourselves, we’ll recognize the selfishness in being selfless.
Volunteering connects us with others. It challenges our mind. And it keeps us from thinking about being lazy.
And now… the research shows it could save our life.
If doing good isn’t good enough to get you volunteering, that’s fine.
Do it for yourself.
We’ll all be better off if we nurture our Connections.
P.S. In Friday’s issue, Dr. Sanjay Jain shared a few little-known, all-natural pain remedies. It was valuable Know-How. And the reader response was enormous. We received tons of feedback from folks who want to learn more about how they can safely treat their pain. If you have questions, feel free to send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.