The boom of social media means we’re more connected than ever, but our reliance on digital communication comes to the detriment of more traditional and meaningful forms of interaction.
An emerging trend for nostalgia has seen a return to more meaningful forms of communication, with a resurgence in handwritten notes and personalised bouquets. Kate Leaver, author of The Friendship Cure, reveals analogue forms of communication are key to making deeper connections and creating closeness with others, even when hectic schedules don’t allow for face to face meetings.
To help you show your friends how much they mean to you, Kate shared her 5 top tips to make the most of your time and show friends you’re thinking about them even when you’re not able to see each other. And no, a text won’t do.
Send handwritten notes and flowers
Sending and receiving a handwritten note with a bouquet of flowers can be incredibly moving. Choosing flowers with symbolism is a great place to start to share meaningful exchanges with someone special. For example, sweet peas represent gratitude and loyalty, whilst delphiniums convey feelings of levity, frivolity and joy - exactly the combination of feelings we celebrate in our friendships.
Flowers make people happier
A behavioural study conducted at Harvard University shows people feel more compassionate toward others when flowers are in the home. Flowers are proven to reduce anxiety and help us feel less stressed. Flowers induce happiness, but those feelings are not just confined to the home. Through mood contagion, the positivity we feel when surrounded by flowers also extends to when we leave home, making it more likely for us to connect and engage more intimately with people they encounter.
Say how much they mean to you
It may sound obvious, but we don’t do it enough… if someone means something to you, tell them. You don’t want to regret leaving real affection unsaid, so make sure you’re honest about how much you cherish your friends. Tell them they matter, show them you care, say out loud the words “I appreciate you”.
Listen properly and ask good questions
Sometimes, we forget to listen actively and ask interesting questions when we’re hanging out with people, making new friends or reconnecting with old ones. Try asking probing questions that show genuine interest like “what are you doing at the weekend?”. Having meaningful conversations with people you care about is one of the most restorative, healing and profound ways we can connect as human beings.
Meet in person as often as possible
There is nothing more magical than physically being in the same place as someone who means a lot to you. Eye contact and physical affection make us feel closer to our friends and it’s so important to get your dose of that kind of love as often as you can. Why not organise a floral workshop with your best friends to really reconnect and create something special?
Read more about the importance of re-connecting with friends in the digital age and how flowers can help.