When we have Parkinson or chronic disease we need “connection” and “connectedness” — Parkinson Secrets – Treatment Tips for PWP’s & Caregivers –

Check out our video blog on the importance of connectedness in Parkinson’s and chronic disease.

Brene Brown a social worker at the University of Houston sums up the importance of connection when she says,

“Connection is the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard and valued; when they can give and receive without judgement; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.”

Social connectedness: part of the multi-dimensional construct of belongingness (Kohut, 1984)

Fiske (2004) identified belonging as a motive that “drives much of social behavior”

Lee and Robbins (2000) defined social connectedness as a person’s “awareness of interpersonal closeness with the social world”

Hatchcock in her thesis at the University of North Florida defined as how we see and feel about ourselves in relation to the rest of the world, asking the question, “Do I belong?”

In mathematics we say things are connected when they are all one piece.

In psychology we think of connectedness in a different way.

Everyone is an individual.

Every person is connected to other people and to the environment around them.

Connectedness therefore binds people together.

Yes. Many psychologists will subdivide connectedness into emotional, physical and cognitive subtypes.

Lee and Robbins wrote that social connectedness is the experience of belonging to a social relationship or network. They discuss the importance of a social networking community.

Van Dijck discusses these differences.

Connectedness- people making connections with other people.

Connectivity- connections using algorithms like on social medial.

Striving for true connectedness in important.

Dr. Kohut put forth a theory of social connectedness in which he emphasizes the importance of a sense of self. The sense of self in his view may be more important than the presence of others.

Tara Hatcock at the University of North Florida studied this issue and found a relationship with depression and anxiety scores. “The findings suggest that when we are ill, one of the most important things we need is connection to others. Without that connection, a person is more likely to be depressed, anxious, and have poorer health. This does not appear to be associated with the type of illness they have, but rather due to losing touch with those they once believed they belonged with – friends, family, sports teams, clubs, and so on.”

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