EPISODE 426: The Importance of Friendship

I spent six weeks in March and April of this year in a fairly strict lockdown in Barcelona, and then two weeks in May completely housebound in Germany. COVID-19 has affected every single aspect of my life both for good and bad.

What about you? Were you on lockdown?

If so, who did you call? Who did you turn to (virtually) for help? If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s taught us that humans are social beings through to our core. Even the most introverted types (like me) have felt the longing for group gathering, social interaction, and connection with friends.

But what is a true friend? And how does that change from your teen years into adulthood, middle age and beyond? From an adaptive perspective, why is it that strong friendships are correlated with longevity and overall healthspan? On this week’s podcast, we’ll explore the importance and science behind deep social connections.

Listen in to learn:

  • Why you really only need one true friend (but more are great too)
  • How digital and long-distance friends stack up to old-fashioned, in-person connections
  • Why true friendships should be long-lasting, stable, and cooperative
  • How to embrace the natural change of friends at different stages of life

Links & Resources:

ABOUT OUR GUEST

Lydia Denworth is a science journalist and contributing editor for Scientific American. She writes the Brain Waves blog for Psychology and her work is supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

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