We all make time for the people who matter to us. Whether it’s your close family or good friends, spending quality time with them can give you a sense of joy and comfort that lasts long after the conversation is over. If you want to cultivate true happiness in life, having meaningful conversations with your friends is essential – they’re meant to be mutually enjoyable! But what do “quality conversations” look like? Well, let me tell you: whether it’s talking about work or getting into silly things together, here are 7 types of quality conversations you should have with a friend for maximum satisfaction.
Social connections and well-being are intrinsically linked, with research suggesting that having quality friendships is associated with greater life satisfaction, better mental health and increased longevity. This was proven during the COVID-19 pandemic, when confinement and the lack of social contact had an impact on the mental health of many people. But what kind of conversation should we have with our friends to increase our sense of happiness? The answer in this study.
Joking is enough to increase your daily well-being.
A new study co-authored by University of Kansas communication professor and friendship expert Jeffrey Hall has revealed some interesting findings about communication and its impact on human relationships. According to the study, engaging in intentional conversations matters most when it comes to feeling connected to friends and loved ones.
In the study, conducted by researchers at five campuses, more than 900 participants were asked to engage in one of seven types of communication for one day:
- Get news.
- Have a serious conversation.
- To pay attention.
- Value others and their opinions.
- Give sincere compliments.
The participants then submitted their report in the evening including their level of stress, their connection with others, their level of anxiety, their general well-being and their feeling of loneliness and the course of the day.
The results showed that quality conversations weren’t really necessary. Rather, it was intentionally reaching out to the other that made the difference. Even a simple news outlet or joke can have a positive effect on how good people feel throughout the day.
“If at least one of their quality conversations happened face-to-face, it would matter.” Jeffrey Hall.
The study’s experimental design means that it’s not just people who already have fulfilling lives who are able to have meaningful conversations. Rather, research suggests that anyone who takes the time to focus on the quality of their conversations can reap mental health benefits. According to Mr Hall, “we can change the way we feel every day through communication. It only takes one time”.
Hall’s previous research has also focused on different ways to connect in an age where social networking and electronic contact are ubiquitous. The results of this study clearly indicated that face-to-face interactions were much more strongly linked to improved mental well-being than electronic contacts or the use of social networks. This suggests that physical proximity plays an important role in creating meaningful bonds, as it facilitates connection, exchange, and trust in interpersonal relationships.
Furthermore, the results reinforce the belief that the quality of conversations matters more than the quantity when it comes to improving mental health and overall well-being through communication. While having multiple conversations with friends is beneficial for maintaining healthy connections, this research suggests that focusing on high-quality interactions may be even more effective in promoting stress relief and feelings of belonging.
Finally, these results suggest that people should not underestimate the power of conversation as a tool for managing stress and improving emotional state. A few moments of constructive dialogue with a friend can do wonders for both parties involved – giving them the opportunity to share experiences and understand each other, while enjoying therapeutic benefits such as reduced stress levels and mood improvement.