Thoughtful acts in a digital age

Nostalgic Brits return to thoughtful traditions to show friends how much they care

In an increasingly digital age, people are spending more time than ever on social media. However, in a world filled with social platforms designed to bring us closer together, a worrying trend has emerged. Loneliness: a deepening epidemic in the UK, getting worse as digital communication becomes more ingrained in every aspect of our lives - research shows that 40% of young people reported feeling lonely, compared with only 27% of over 75s.

To counter this, a trend for nostalgia has emerged hot on its heels. Nostalgic millennials are yearning for a return to simpler, analogue exchanges for a more profound way of connecting with others.

Giving flowers with hand-written notes is one of the tangible ways we can achieve this trend, with academic research from The State University of New Jersey confirming the link between fresh flowers, friendship and emotional health. In the study, those who received flowers were more likely to form stronger bonds with others, talk more intimately and ultimately make more genuine connections compared to any other stimuli.

Kate Leaver, author of The Friendship Cure, elaborates on the importance and value of giving flowers as a form of communication. She explains: “We may still communicate frantically and prolifically by text and on social media, but when we really want to say, ‘this means something to me’ or more importantly, ‘you mean something to me’ we tend to mark it with a physical gesture.”

“Writing a letter or sending personalised bouquets is a very powerful, tangible way of reaching out when you cannot be in the same place. We don’t need to save flowers for romantic gestures; they can be the most wonderful sign of friendship,” notes Kate.

Further research confirms this connection, with 75% of people agreeing that sending physical forms of communication strengthens relationships. You don’t need an excuse to show your friends what they mean to you, so why not make today the day you send that bouquet or write that letter? Even better, go and see them flowers in hand and see their gratitude first hand.

Read more about how you can re-connect with you friends with Kate Leaver’s top tips.