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  • Writer's pictureDillan Taylor

The science of friendship

A good friend sent me a podcast yesterday. It was a panel of academics sharing research on the relationships of friends.

I thought I’d go for a short walk and listen to 10-15 minutes of it. But it was so insightful and entertaining, I spent an entire hour just walking laps around my apartment complex in the cold and rain.

It’s called, “Time for a Friendship Reset?” by Aspen Ideas to Go. For anyone who wants to listen to it, it’s available on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

They discuss how limited the research on friendships is. In doing so, they share relatable and digestible experiences we’ve all gone through in our friendships.

Here are a few of my biggest takeaways:

  1. Men tend to bond with each other through activities and often avoid maintaining friendships with openness, vulnerability, and communication.

  2. There’s a powerful script when trying to save an eroding friendship: Here’s why I loved our friendship in the past—you made me feel this way. Then it seemed like this happened and now I feel this way. I’m sorry I didn’t have to courage to say anything until now. How have things happened from your perspective? What can we both change moving forward?

  3. It’s totally natural to feel jealous of our friends. The same is true of those who take up time with our closest friends.

  4. Friendships are often more powerful than family relationships. While you can’t choose your family, friends are close bonds that are entirely based on two people choosing to spend their time, love, and attention with one another. There’s no contract like there is with a spouse or a blood relative. That’s also why it hurts so bad when someone chooses to let the friendship die.

If you check it out, reply to this email and let me know what you got out of it!

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