Remember last week when we were talking about the benefits of quality over quantity when it comes to friendship? Well, I was also fascinated with the work done by Robin Dunbar, whose pioneering research into primate activity led to an estimation of the maximum size of social groupings in both primates and humans. The magic maximum number, you wonder?
That’s the maximum number of relationships most people can manage. But perhaps even more realistic, he found, was that people typically have five people closest to them; the state of our well-being tends to come from those five special people.
I’ll admit, that number got me thinking. Five people. Is it really possible to narrow the list down to such a short number, I wondered? No matter where I am in life, I know I’d be nowhere without my closest friends and family…
*My mom: I mean, c’mon, the lady’s Ms. Bear, after all. If that isn’t reason enough, then I don’t know what is. She’s literally saved me so many times since my father died and I don’t know where I’d be without her.
*Janelle: My sister is someone who never ceases to amaze me. She can make me laugh and always has the power to talk some sense into me by her “give-it-to-me-straight” attitude, which is something I find so refreshing.
*Jalyn: One of my oldest friends is the kind of person who is always there for you, typically ready with a smile and a hug.
*Mona: My cousin has always been one of my #1 role models ever since I was little. I’ve admired her determination, and she’s taught me so much about self-confidence over the years, even if she didn’t know it.
*Aunt Elaine: My mom’s sister is one of my favorite people ever. She’s laid-back, gives great advice and is as much a dog lover as we are cat lovers. Plus, I love getting her and my mom together and seeing the family stories fly!
So many people come into our lives and leave their mark, but there are those people with whom your connection runs deep — it’s the sort of lifelong connection that can’t be broken by time or distance, right? You change them and they change you. It’s really a beautiful thing, especially when you think of the fact that you don’t even know who might consider you one of their “close” people. Life sure is funny like that, isn’t it?
Who are you closest to, friends? How have these people changed your life for the better and how do you think you’ve changed theirs? Have you grown closer to certain people over the years? Let’s share our stories in the comments! xoxo
[Photos via We Heart It]