The world would be nothing without our best friends. We need friends in all phases of our lives.
While researching about friendship, scientists have discovered some shocking facts about best friends and the Psychology of Friendship.
So, in honor of our best friends, I have compiled a list of 45 Psychological Facts About Friendship.
1. All friendships are not mutual. Only half of the people we consider friends return the feeling.
2. The average size of your friendship network will remain the same for most of your life.
3. Friendships are more likely to last if both people feel like they’re getting as much out of the relationship as they’re putting in.
4. Close friends share about 1% of their DNA, making them as close as genetically fourth cousins.
5. Friendship is even stronger when you know what irritates your friend. This is known as the ‘if-then’ profile. Knowing friends’ reactions when faced with different situations is just as important as knowing their tastes.
6. Friendships are more important for women than men. For men, the family bond is the most important.
7. Any friendship that begins in the period between 18-26 years of age is more likely to be robust and long-lasting.
8. Men and women can’t be friends. A study at the University of Wisconsin showed that it is impossible to escape from moments of seduction and sexual tension.
9. Women with no friends are 66% more likely to die than women who have an extensive network of friends.
10. The average number of confidants in an average person’s life has fallen by a third in the past 20 years. To make matters worse, twice as many people have no confidants at all!
11. Having no friends or confidants is bad for your health. It is as bad as smoking or being overweight.
12. A study was conducted where electrical shocks were given to subjects, friends, and total strangers. The study showed that the subjects’ brains reacted the same whether they or their friends were about to be shocked. No sympathy for strangers, though!
13. People live 22% longer if they have an extensive network of friends. Want to live longer? Starting making some new friends (especially the ones that last).
14. The number of best friends an adult had 25 years ago was three. Now, it’s down to just two.
15. Loneliness has become a big problem in America. A study was conducted in which adults were asked about the number of confidants they had. The most common answer: ‘None.’
16. 68% of teens using social media have experienced online drama with a friend.
17. 26% of teens have had a real-life conflict with a friend over something that was said online.
18. Women with breast cancer who do not have friends are twice as likely to die of the disease than women who maintain healthy relationships.
19. People who have been through a stressful situation return to normal more quickly if they spend time with friends. We aren’t alone in this; chimps also experience this.
20. The “cheerleader effect” works in friendship too. You appear more attractive in a group than you do on your own. This is because the most beautiful people of the group raise the perception of the group’s overall attractiveness. (I need to find some hot friends now!)
21. Babies, at a very young age (as young as 9 months old), can recognize friendship, even if it’s between strangers.
22. Even if older people have an existing network of friends, they are twice as likely to develop dementia if they feel lonely.
23. Lifestyle of one member in the group can affect the lifestyle of others. If one member starts working out and eating healthy, his/her friends are more likely to adopt such habits too.
24. When a person quits smoking, there is a 36% chance that other members of the group quit it too. I guess peer pressure is not that bad after all.
25. ‘Quality over Quantity,’ this is true in friendship too. Regardless of how many friends you have, the happier you are in your friendships, the more likely you will be satisfied with your life.
26. If you have your best friend at your job, you’re seven times more likely to be productive and enjoy your work.
27. If you don’t have any friends at work, there’s only an 8.3% chance that you’ll like what you do.
28. To reap the health benefits of friendship, you need between three and five close friends.
29. “Person-qua-person factor” is a significant element of friendship, meaning that friends treat each other as unique and irreplaceable individuals, not merely as occupants of a given role in their lives.
30. The meaning of friendship evolves as kids grow. 3 to 6-year-olds define people as friends so long as they’re participating together in an activity they enjoy. By ages nine to twelve, though, they’re evaluating friends based on values.
31. Keeping the friendship alive in a marriage is five times as important as physical intimacy. Mutual respect for each other and a good knowledge of each other’s likes and dislikes is good for the marriage.
32. A research conducted at Ohio University has defined the five qualities that make an everlasting friendship: voluntary, affectionate, personal, equal ground, and mutual.
33. The amount of time you invest with your friends determine the longevity of your relationship.
34. The number of people you can handle in your social group (people you consider casual friends) is about 150. This number is also known as “The Dunbar Number.”
35. Co-rumination (talking to our friends about our troubles, but without looking for solutions) isn’t always a good thing. While it can help to share your problems with a friend, sometimes it mostly increases their stress-levels, rather than lowering yours.
36. 38% of teenage boys said their gaming handle is one of the top three things they would share with someone they wanted to be friends with.
37. We have five close friends. But people in a relationship have four, counting their partner.
38. First graders keep only about half of their friendships from fall to spring.
39. Fourth-graders maintain about three-quarters of their friendships across the school year.
40. Men are physically and sexually more attracted to their female friends and tend to overestimate how those female friends saw them.