• lynneeveratt

🔋What you don't know about friendship can hurt you

Over 2,500 years ago, Aristotle said that without friendship “No one would choose to live.” Science has finally caught up with Aristotle, revealing that relationships can be a matter of life or death… 1. 🧐 The research-based case for friendship



Harvard's Robert Waldinger makes the case for friendship...and a good marriage The only study you need to know: Since 1938, the Harvard Study of Adult Development has been following people over the course of their entire adult lives in search of the secret to health and happiness. 😬 Oh-oh! The lessons of the Harvard study are at odds with the way most people live their lives. Studies of young people repeatedly show that most have money, fame, and achievement as major life goals. The ideal career of 2022 is to become a wealthy influencer. But the lessons of the Harvard study show that working toward becoming a wealthy influencer is clearly not the recipe for health and happiness. The 3 lessons of the study are:

  • Good relationships keep us happier and healthier and give us longer lives.

  • Social connections are good for the brain, warding off cognitive decline as we age.

  • Loneliness shortens lives, beginning with health declines in midlife, and an earlier than expected decrease in brain function.

Sad fact: More than 1 in 5 Americans report being lonely. Yes, but not all relationships are good for your health. Quality matters more than quantity.

  • You can be lonely in a marriage, and totally miserable in a marriage with a lot of conflict and a lack of affection.

  • You can have “ambivalent” friends who run hot and cold and are worse than not having friends at all. 🤯 Research says 50 percent of relationships are ambivalent!

The key predictor of how well you will age is how satisfied you are in your relationships. Good relationships protect you. The Bottom Line: If you want to make an investment of time and energy into your future best self, focus on your relationships. Get charged up on the case for friendship with Robert Waldinger’s classic TED Talk “What makes a good life? Lessons from the longest study on happiness.” 2. 🧠 What your brain gets wrong about friendship



My brain gets a lot of things wrong, especially during pumpkin spice season! (Cute photo thanks to the UK's That's Her Business) 📈 Friendless by the numbers: In 1990, 3 percent of Americans said they had no close friends. By 2021, that number had quadrupled to nearly 12 percent. Big picture: During most of human history, we lived in communities where connection was a part of everyday life. In the 19th century, loneliness didn’t exist. People had to be a part of a tribe, a family, a community, or they couldn’t survive. Today, connection requires effort and is easily avoidable. Our minds don’t help us make friends: we wrongly assume that friends will find us, that strangers don't like us, and that friendships, once made, will continue on autopilot. Unfriendly facts:

  • After 7 years, half of close friends aren’t close anymore.

  • Your romantic partner cost you two platonic friends

3 theories you need to befriend: 1. The liking gap: When you interact with a stranger, you are more liked than you think. What to do about it: Talk to strangers. 2. The acceptance prophecy: when you assume people will like you, you behave in a warm friendly way that make others like you. What to do about it: Assume people like you. 3. The exposure effect: we naturally begin to like people more when we see them often. What to do about it: Join a club, take a class, or volunteer where you’ll regularly meet people who share your interests. Bottom line: If you want to make more friends, try to make friends. You are much less likely to be rejected than you think. Get charged up on making friends with the book Platonic: How the Science of Attachment Can Help You Make — and Keep — Friends and its author Dr. Marisa Franco who was recently interviewed in The New York Times 3. 🧑‍🍳 The too secret recipe for deeper friendships


Friends share the secret of friendship (secret photo from Ben White, Unsplash) The two simple (but not easy) ingredients you need to deepen your relationships: time and vulnerability. Yes, but how can you be vulnerable? Answer this question: can I share something embarrassing or scary with this person and still feel accepted? The fast track to vulnerability: Friendship, romance, even marriage, these 36 questions of increasing intimacy from researcher Arthur Aron are guaranteed to deepen any relationship. What about time? Make time for friends by adding them to the routines of your life and their lives. Exercise, shopping, eating, all are routine activities that love company. DO IT NOW: Skim through your contacts and select one person to reach out to. Text them to let them know that you’re thinking about them and ask them how they’re doing. Research says they’ll appreciate it much more than you think. Get charged up on deepening your relationships through this interview with Eric Barker, author of Plays Well With Others: The Surprising Science Behind Why Everything You Know About Relationships is (Mostly) Wrong 🔋 Get a quick charge out of these: 😊 When Harvard Business Review dug deeply into what happiness at work means, it found…friendship! 😶 Are you stuck in a rut? Oliver Burkeman can help dig you out! 🏋️‍♀️ The New York Times asks: should your workout be pleasure or pain? The answer? Both, but mostly pleasure. 😴 Sleep tourism is 📈 🎧 As a follow up to last week’s recharge on how to find happiness in sound, scientists have discovered the sweet spot, slightly above the level of background noise, where sound helps the brain drown out pain. In pain-free friendship, Lynne

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