Mental Health

Why Having Strong Friendships Improves Our Mental Health

When I was younger I always thought that the more friends I had the better. Now I am older I realise that it is rather the quality of the friendships I have that truly counts. Studies have now shown that in our twenties if we have many friends it leads to greater happiness in our forties and fifties but, interestingly, in our thirties it is the quality and strength of the friendships that determine our happiness later in life. I have to admit I have certainly found this to be true. Whether you are in your twenties or thirties no one can deny that having friendships is critical to having good mental health.


Like anyone, there have been periods where I have had to face challenges and tough times and in these moments I have always managed to endure thanks to the support of my friends. The importance of honest advice, encouragement and an understanding and empathetic shoulder to lean on should never be underestimated.


New ‘Best Websites’ Page Featuring The Webs Most Outstanding Psychology and Mental Health Sites


Hi All,


As you might have noticed there have been quite a few new additions here at Accessible Psychology and I’m particularly excited about my new ‘Best Websites’ page. If you or someone you know has been impacted by mental health it features charity websites like Mind and Rethink that are both highly informative and very supportive. Mind has an entire section on ‘helping someone else’ whilst Rethink offers invaluable practical advise on living with mental illness.


The Depression Alliance also provides an amazing support network for those suffering with depression, helping to ease the social isolation which can establish itself in the lives of those with the condition. Cruse Bereavement Care is also an exceptional website which offers superb advise for those dealing with loss and offers telephone, email and UK based face-to-face support.


Having relationship problems? Relates website offers support and counselling (UK based) to those wishing to improve their romantic relationships. For some people, they serve to transform their clients relationships and lives whilst for others Relate helps solve a specific problem and allow clients to move forward with more confidence and less anxiety.


The Samaritans have been providing free counselling for years through their amazing helpline and on my page there is a link to their website which provides the contact details of what, for many, can be a lifesaving service.


Problems nodding off at night? The National Sleep Foundation has a comprehensive site with information on sleep health, sleep problems and disorders, sleep tools and tips and even a search for a sleep professional service (US based).


Last but certainly and by no means last there is The Happiness Project – an entire site dedicated to making your life the happiest it can possibly be! I really cannot recommend this website highly enough. The blog on the homepage is well researched, humorous and insightful. The section dedicated to breaking bad habits and forming new positive ones is educational and inspired. The tips and quizzes section is fun and the quotes featured in this section are fantastic. Finally, if you are as inspired as I was to begin a happiness project of your very own, the downloads section is an absolute must with exactly the same tools Gretchen used now available for anyone to print up and fill out.


Look out for our section for young people too.


Please tell me how you found the sites and how they were helpful to you, I would absolutely love to hear from you.




x X x Jenny Leigh x X x