“Good friends are good for your health.” – Irwin Sarason

"Good friends are good for your health." - Irwin Sarason

Health has been on all of our minds, especially with the disruption that repeated lockdowns has brought into our lives. This inevitably impacts on our ability to socialise, congregate and celebrate with our closest friends. There are many articles in the news about the pain of separation, of how feeling cut off from our friends network can have detrimental effects on our emotional and psychological wellbeing (this isn’t one of them!)

The challenge then is not to surrender to the negative emotions caused by these barriers but to face up to them and adapt the way we keep in contact, so we can maintain a positive outlook and take better care of our emotional health. People are increasingly imaginative with how they’re doing this – and we would love to hear from you what you’ve been doing to overcome the anxiety of separation from your social circles!

For over two years, I have seen neither any of my non-local friends nor my family – and that’s been tough – so we’re all thankful for technology enabling easier and more regular contact. And, although we’ve not physically met, we’ve actually connected perhaps more frequently than we did before things like social distancing threatened to take over all our lives! Why? 

Maybe, as we sense the potential to give into despair, we recognise the value in sharing our collective and individual experiences of lockdown. We find solace and comfort in hearing about each other’s different strategies for coping with the lack of interaction. 

In doing so, we actively increase those moments of interaction, be it through Zoom, Skype or WhatsApp chats, in groups or individually, whether for random reasons at random times or for structured events, e.g. watch parties, online quizzes or live-streaming family events, etc.

It’s often in times of crisis that we realise the true value of good friendship; what methods are you using, creating or adapting to keep nurturing contact with yours? Are you ensuring that your emotional health is cared for? Do you need a friend right now? Drop me a line…..

Love and light,

Jim Sharman



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