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How to live well: 9th meeting - social identity theory, strength of weak ties & Fredrickson's emotional resonance

 

                 "No man is an island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main."                                                                                                                            John Donne

How to live well: 7th meeting - relationships, roles, Dunbar, needs & dyads

 

           "Of all the means which wisdom acquires to ensure happiness throughout the whole of life,                                                                    by far the most important is friendship."           Epicurus

        "Friendship is the single most important factor influencing our health, well-being, and happiness."                                                            Robin Dunbar, Oxford emeritus professor of evolutionary psychology 

The surprising power of weak 'social ties'

I’ve just been to the Farmer’s Market here in Edinburgh and I set myself the challenge of being more chatty than usual to the stallholders I was buying food from.  I ‘pushed’ myself to be friendly & talk more than I’ve ever done before (and I’ve been going to the market intermittently for years) … and it was such fun.  Tender, bubbly, jokey, light.  And I had more of a spring in my step for hours afterwards.  And it didn’t mean that I took much longer doing the shopping than I usually do either.  And as one might have predicted, this ‘good mood’ and happy positivity then splashed over into my actions subsequently (see Barbara Fredrickson's 'Broaden-and-build theory' of the function of positive emotions and her comments about

Social networks: social identity & the importance of both formal & informal group memberships (what can we do?)

How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.

- Annie Dillard

   Social networks: social identity & the importance of both formal & informal groups (what can we do?)

 

key points: 

the social identity model highlights the value of group membership (more & less formal) for both psychological & physical wellbeing - are there groups you would like to join (or initiate) and are there helpful ways you can increase the sense of the importance to you of some of the groups you're a member of (for example by increasing your involvement with them).

Social networks: Dunbar's 5-15-50-150 model (assessing how we're doing)

“ A man is as happy as his mind allows him to be ” - Abraham Lincoln

                       Social networks: Dunbar's 5-15-50-150 model (assessing how we're doing)

key points: 

 

1.)  Please would you download a personal community map (see below) and begin to fill it in. 

 

2.)  While filling in the map and afterwards, answer the items on the associated questionnaire ... and start to jot down possible intentions too.

 

Social networks: Dunbar's 5-15-50-150 model (support clique/closest relationships)

“ When you were born, everyone was smiling but you were crying. Live such a life that when you depart, everyone is weeping but you are smiling. ” - Sa'di of Shiraz

                         Social networks: Dunbar's 5-15-50-150 model (support clique/closest relationships)

key point: 

 

In this first part of three on Dunbar's 5-15-50-150 personal social network model, I introduce the crucially important inner layer - the 'support clique' of closest relationships.

 

Social networks: social identity & the importance of both formal & informal group memberships (background)

“ The time of business does not with me differ from the time of prayer, and in the noise and clatter of my kitchen, while several persons are at the same time calling for different things, I possess God in as great tranquillity as if I were upon my knees at the blessed sacrament. ” - Brother Lawrence

Social networks: social identity & the importance of both formal & informal group memberships (background)

 

key point: 

 

The intriguing additional value of understanding social networks through a social identity lens is highlighted and a wealth of emerging research validating the importance of this approach is introduced.

 

Social networks: an introduction

“ Healthy living has benefits hugely greater than anything medicine can deliver. ” - Bandolier 136, Oxford evidence-based medicine website

                                                                Social networks: an introduction

 

key points: 

 

1.)  emerging research is introduced that highlights the great importance of personal social networks for disease prevention, psychological resilience & optimal wellbeing. 

 

2.)  links are provided to three ways of taking this forward - self-determination theory, social identity theory, and Dunbar's 5-15-50-150 model.

 

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