Hang Out with Women and De-Stress

A landmark University of California, Los Angeles, study suggests friendships between women are special. Hello-o…did it need university research to tell us what we already know?

Well, yes, because the research explains more about what we know… that hanging out with our women friends can actually counteract the kind of stomach churning stress many of us experience on a daily basis. It suggests women respond to stress with a whole mix of brain chemicals that motivate us to make and maintain friendships with other women.

Researchers now suspect women have a larger behavioural repertoire than the classic ‘fight or flight’ reaction to stress. (Turns out that 90% of traditional stress research has been done with males! Wouldn’t you know it?).

It seems that when the hormone oxytocin is released as part of the stress responses in women, it encourages us to tend children and gather with other women instead.

Now we know one of the biochemical reasons why being with good women friends is a tonic. So make a point of valuing your woman friends…and yourself as one of them.

Sounds to me like another great way to relieve stress!

Taylor, S E, Klein, L C, Lewis, B P, Gruenewald, T L, Gurung. R A R, & Updegraff, J A, (2000). “Female Responses to Stress: Tend and Befriend, Not Fight or Flight”, Psychological Review, 107 (3), 41-429.


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