Hello SOTGC community,
Are You Social Enough?
Fun at the beach, backyard BBQ’s, cocktails on the patio … have you noticed that your level of wellbeing seems to have improved since summer has rolled around? You may think it’s due to the sunny, warm weather, which certainly helps, but it might have more to do with the fact that you are out socializing in it.
Whether you consider yourself a social butterfly or an introvert, the amount of social time you have each day can actually determine the quality of your day.
According to Gallup research, six hours of social time is the magic number to log in order to have what is considered a “thriving” day, and each hour will increase your odds.
For those of you that feel quite busy, you may be wondering how in the world you are supposed to fit in a whopping six hours of social time, as was I after reading that initial idea! The good news is that social time can include things like email or texting (although I would like to debate that), and, of course, time spent socializing with friends, family, and coworkers, even on the phone.
The key concepts here are communication and interaction. While email and texting certainly count as communication, they do not contribute to the higher states of wellbeing that can be achieved by more direct forms of in-person socialization or phone conversation. It has been my own experience, and that of many of my friends and clients, that texting has taken over as a preferred method of communication. Yes, it serves a purpose, but I know that this is part of the reason that people are feeling less satisfied socially.
For those of us that work, or that live with family, it is often easy to accumulatea lot of our social time. If that does not describe your current work/life situation, you may have to be more outgoing in your pursuit.
Here are some simple suggestions that anyone can use to help maximize the social quota:
- Instead of sending a text message, pick up the phone once in a while to communicate verbally.
- Say hello in passing to three strangers during your day-to-day activities.
- Talk to someone in an elevator, even if it is just “elevator talk”.
- Share a meal at a table with family or friends.
- Invite someone along … to the store (your kids, spouse), the gym (your friend), or the cafeteria (your co-worker) … wherever it might be that you are going.
When you think of someone, let them know … even if it is just by sending a text.
As I have just taken the time to write this article, and will be emailing it you, I am happy to know that I’ve just done something to increase my social wellbeing for the day!
Want another easy way to make your social quota? Say hello in the comments below, tweet me @ModernWellbeing, or share this post with your friends Facebook, Linkedin, or Twitter!