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Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad on How to Navigate Isolation, Loneliness, and its Impact on Health

Have you heard the myths that social connection does not impact health or that loneliness is a necessary part of adulthood? Or that loneliness is a sign of failure? Join Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad as she busts these myths and shares the truth about the impact of social connection on health and longevity.

Isolation and loneliness are often interchangeable, but is one more important than the other? My guest today, Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad, reveals that both are essential to our health and well-being and can increase the risk of premature mortality. But what happens when one is surrounded by others and still feels lonely? Or are isolated but don’t feel lonely? Join us as we explore the complexities between psychological and social well-being and physical well-being. The answers may surprise you and leave you with more questions…

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Being socially connected is critically important to both our well-being and our health and ultimately our longevity.

Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad

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Listen to the episode on Apple PodcastsSpotifyPodcast AddictPocket CastsStitcherCastboxGoogle PodcastsListen NotesAmazon Music, or on your favorite podcast platform. You can watch the interview on YouTube below.


Julianne Holt-Lunstad Joins Me to Discuss How to Navigate Social Isolation, Loneliness, and its Impact on Health

John R. Miles hosts an insightful conversation with Julianne Holt-Lunstad, an expert in psychology and neuroscience, on the Passion Struck podcast. They discuss the significant impact of social connections on health and longevity, touching on topics like the differences between isolation and loneliness, the role of attachment styles, and practical advice for fostering meaningful relationships. Throughout the episode, Holt-Lunstad highlights the indispensability of strong social connections in leading a healthy, happy life. This podcast episode is an essential listen for adults looking to enhance their well-being through the power of social connections, providing valuable knowledge and guidance on how to nurture and maintain these relationships for a healthier, more fulfilled life.

Julianne Holt-Lunstad’s journey to understand the connection between psychological, social well-being, and physical health began with a focus on the effects of stress. Over time, she realized the powerful role relationships play in coping with stress and promoting health, beyond just the context of stress. As she continued her research, Julianne discovered that factors such as the structure, function, and quality of our relationships significantly contribute to our health and longevity. This knowledge led her to study the essential role social connections play in people’s lives, ultimately establishing a well-replicated relationship between social connectedness and increased odds of survival.

Listen and learn as Julianne Holt-Lunstad, and I discuss the following topics and you will be able to:

  • Explore the profound influence of social connections on your health and longevity.
  • Uncover the link between various attachment styles and the health benefits of quality relationships.
  • Differentiate the concepts of isolation and loneliness, and why it matters.
  • Investigate how social media affects the prevalence of loneliness in today’s youth.
  • Develop strategies for addressing loneliness with social fitness and therapeutic interventions.
  • And much, much more!
  • Have any questions, comments, or stories you’d like to share? Drop us a line at [email protected]!
Passion Struck Podcast
Passion Struck Podcast
282 | Navigating Isolation, Loneliness, and Health | Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad | Passion Struck with John R. Miles

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Starter Packs

Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad quote from the passion struck podcast on the impact of our small daily choices on our longevity

New to the show? These Starter Packs are collections of our most popular episodes grouped by topic, and we now have them also on Spotify. You can also browse starter packs for existing listeners to find your old favorites. Every week, John interviews everyday heroes from all walks of life. Learn how to subscribe to the show and never miss a new episode and topic.

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More From My Conversation With Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad

Impact of Loneliness on Health

Loneliness has been linked to numerous negative health outcomes. Much like the effects of smoking and physical inactivity, loneliness can lead to a heightened risk of chronic illness, cognitive decline, and premature death. This is largely due to the physiological effects of the body’s stress response which can result in chronic inflammation, immune and endocrine dysregulation, and changes in the cardiovascular system.

Julianne Holt-Lunstad’s research emphasizes the importance of addressing loneliness within the medical community. She discusses the lack of awareness and resources for healthcare providers as contributing factors to the often-overlooked problem of loneliness. However, increased attention to the issue, partly due to the pandemic, has resulted in initiatives such as incorporating isolation, loneliness, and social support metrics into electronic health records.

Coping with Loneliness

Coping with loneliness can be challenging, but proactive strategies for enhancing social connections, practicing kindness, and seeking outside help can make a significant difference. Individuals must prioritize their social well-being and actively invest in their relationships, despite any discomfort or awkwardness that might arise.

In the podcast, Dr. Holt-Lunstad offers practical solutions for coping with loneliness by encouraging listeners to be intentional about their relationships and engage in social fitness. For severe cases of loneliness, she suggests seeking professional help, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy. By taking conscious steps to establish meaningful connections and practice self-compassion, individuals can improve their health, well-being, and quality of life.

Say Thanks To Julianne Holt-Lunstad

If you enjoyed this interview with Julianne Holt-Lunstad, let her know by clicking on the link below and sending her a quick shout on Twitter:

Click here to show Juliane Holt-Lunstad your thoughts about today’s episode on Twitter!

Click here to let John R. Miles know about your number one takeaway from this episode!

And if you want us to answer your questions or you have a topic you would like John to discuss on one of our upcoming weekly Momentum Friday episodes, drop us a line at [email protected].

Resources From The Show With Julianne Holt-Lunstad

Please note that some of the links on this page (books, movies, music, etc.) lead to affiliate programs for which The Passion Struck podcast receives compensation. It’s just one of the ways we keep the lights on around here. Thank you so much for being so supportive!

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  • Understand the importance of social connections in maintaining good mental and physical health by exploring research on the subject, such as the meta-analysis conducted by Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad, which showed a 50% increased odds of survival for those with strong social connections.
  • Evaluate the three main components of social connections in your life: the structure, functions, and quality of your relationships. Assess the presence or absence of others, the roles they play, and the positive or negative aspects they bring.
  • Reflect on your attachment style and how it may be impacting your relationships and overall well-being. Consider seeking therapy or counseling if needed to address any attachment-related issues.
  • Recognize the difference between social isolation and loneliness, and understand that both can have negative effects on health and well-being. Seek to improve your social connections, regardless of whether you feel lonely or not.
  • Prioritize building and maintaining strong relationships from an early age, focusing on cultivating secure attachments and fostering a sense of belonging.
  • Read Dr. Marissa Franco’s book, Platonic, to gain insight into the importance of platonic relationships and how to cultivate them.
  • Listen to Passion Struck podcast episodes featuring experts on social connections, such as Dr. Robert Waldinger and Dr. Marissa Franco, to gain further knowledge and inspiration.
  • Check your local community or online platforms for support groups, clubs, or organizations that can help you build and maintain social connections.

My solo episode on how you unleash your creativity:

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Want to catch my best interviews from 2022? Check out episode 233 on intentional greatness and episode 234 on intentional behavior change.

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About Today’s Guest, Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad

Passion Struck podcast album cover episode 282 with Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad on navigating isolation, loneliness, and health

Welcome Julianne Holt-Lunstad, a distinguished professor of psychology and neuroscience at Brigham Young University who has been recognized as the Martin B. Hickman Outstanding Scholar. Julianne leads the Neuroscience Lab at the university, where she conducts pioneering research on the long-lasting health consequences of social connection. Her work has been crucial in establishing social isolation and loneliness as key determinants of premature mortality. Through her in-depth research and expertise, Julianne is devoted to helping individuals comprehend the significance of social connections in promoting their health, well-being, and longevity.

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John R. Miles is a serial entrepreneur and the CEO and founder of Passion Struck. This full-service media company helps people live intentionally by creating best-in-class educational and entertainment content. John is also a prolific public speaker, venture capitalist, and author named to the ComputerWorld Top 100 IT Leaders.

John is the host of the top-ranked Passion Struck Podcast. The show focused on exploring the mindset and philosophy of the world’s most inspiring people to learn their lessons to living intentionally. Passion Struck aspires to speak to the humanity of people in a way that makes them want to better, live better, and impact the world.

Passion Struck is now on the AMFM247 Broadcast Network Mon and Friday from 5-6Pm


Passion Struck is now on the AMFM247 broadcasting network every Monday and Friday from 5-6 PM.

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Passion Struck’s mission is to unlock the power of intentionality for the benefit of us all. To create a world where we live better, be better, and impact the world through our unique and powerful contributions and, more importantly, our actualized selves.

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