FACE-TO-FACE BEATS FACEBOOK EVERY TIME
A recent study showed that 8 in 10 millennials don’t feel it’s important to see mates in person, but, Emma insists we socialise in the real world to limit the risk of depression
The other day, T I asked my eldest son why I hadn’t seen much of his best mate recently. Looking bemused, he simply said, “He’s on my headset now.” Welcome to modern-day communication, where being in the same room, or even the same country, no longer defines relationships.
When I tell my children that we used to have one phone for the whole family and that it was attached to the wall, they look at me as if I have three heads.
I am the first to admit that we have come on leaps and bounds regarding the progress of communication, but I draw the line at the suggestion that you can maintain close friendships by simply Facebooking them, or adding them to your Whatsapp group chat.
Spending time with people you love and who “get you” stimulates lots of rewarding brain chemicals and genuinely improves mood while decreasing stress levels.
When you hang out with your BFF, you reinforce one another’s self-worth and increase the bonding between you. Conversely, research by Oxford University found that when you keep in touch through Facebook and social media alone, you actually weaken the bonds of friendship. The majority of research confirms that being constantly cyber connected often means that we feel harassed by the perpetual vibrations of pointless notifications buzzing. Switching off will only improve our mood while creating essential time and space where we can cultivate important relationships.
Social networks are making us lazy, and falsely convincing us that we are in touch with our nearest and dearest. If you know that you are guilty of such bad habits, it’s time to change.
PUTTING TIME ASIDE
Scheduling your social life can save you and your mates from social media suicide and ensure that you make an effort to see them on a regular basis. Even if you are busy at work, set aside time every week for visits and catch-ups.
Finally, prioritise relationships that you get the most from, such as your best friend or a close family member. It’s a positive life hack, meaning that whatever social time you have free is spent with the most rewarding people.