Science says it takes 200 hours to become good friends. Sammy Losee says what??!
Sammy Losee writes today’s guest post, in response to an earlier post, and this very cool study. I “know” Sammy about as well as she “knows” me: which is to say, we might recognize each other in the street to say hello, yet have read each other’s thoughts (she kicked off 2018 at the helm of our instagram account), and appreciated them. Thought: “good people. Like the sound of her.” Good starting place for a friendship, that. But if neither of us can quite make the time for friendship to happen, it also strikes me as a fantastic foundation for a community. Imagine if we approached everyone around us as “someone I could probably be really great friends with, if I only had 200 hours to invest.” Imagine if we didn’t give up after one “no, sorry, I can’t make that” but kept trying… Imagine (and here’s my deep personal challenge) if you go out into the world assuming people want to be friends with you, not assuming they’re testing, scrutinizing, judging or assessing your worthiness. No, they’re actually just pre-friends. Imagine? So, on that note, over to Sammy, with thanks. (PS she’s just assuming I’m lovely. And I’m okay with that. Once we’ve logged 200 hours with each other, she’ll know better, but she won’t mind. That’s kind of how friendship goes.)
It’s not the quantity, it’s the quality. But quantity is fine if they’re quality people.
A lovely woman I “know” named Lisa Richardson just posted this in an article she wrote:
“A fantastic recent study has put a number to the amount of time it takes to make a friend: 200 hours.
The study revealed that it takes between 40 and 60 hours to form a casual friendship, 80-100 hours to transition to being a friend and more than 200 hours together to become good friends.
‘We have to put that time in,’ said Associate Professor of Communication Studies Jeffrey Hall. ‘You can’t snap your fingers and make a friend. Maintaining close relationships is the most important work we do in our lives—most people on their deathbeds agree.’”
I “know” a lot of people now. Many are “friends” on Facebook but a lot of you I don’t know as much as I’d like to or get to spend as much time with you as I’d like to.
I have two people I would consider to be my best friends. One is my loving husband Cookie whom I’ve been married to for 18 1/2 years (but I don’t spend nearly enough quality time with) and one is my friend Amy whom I’ve known for 28 years (WOW!!!) who I don’t call enough and don’t see enough. I hate that I live so far away from her.
Last year I was pushing myself out of my comfort zone by going to “Bike Club” on Wednesday nights in Pemby in order to spend more time with some women I’ve known loosely for years but never spent much time with. This was something that made me very happy. I’d like to do more of that — pushing myself into situations and spending time with people that I might not spend a lot of time with, in order to get to know them better.
40-60 hours to form even just a casual friendship! This is not something that just happens overnight. It takes effort.
I want you to know that if you’re reading this, I believe you are worth the effort.
Knowing someone just to say hello is one thing. Spending time with someone to get to know them better is another.
I don’t spend enough time with my loved ones and I’m terrible at calling those closest to me to tell them how much I love them. My whole family can attest to that. They are worth the effort though and it’s something I’m working on. I want you to all know that you’re worth the effort too. I often struggle with feeling “too busy”. I value my friendships and family and if you’re one of the people who would like to know me better, please don’t give up on me, keep trying, ask me to join you in your adventures and I will try to put in the time to get to know you better as well.
It’s important to me.