DiscoverThe Liz Moody PodcastThe Secret To Making Soul Satisfying Friends As An Adult (Avoid The Mistake Everyone Makes!)
The Secret To Making Soul Satisfying Friends As An Adult (Avoid The Mistake Everyone Makes!)

The Secret To Making Soul Satisfying Friends As An Adult (Avoid The Mistake Everyone Makes!)

Update: 2024-05-29
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This episode of the Liz Moody Podcast continues the conversation about modern friendship with Anna Goldfarb, a journalist and friendship expert. They discuss the impact of social media on friendships, the ideal number of close friends, and how to navigate political differences within friendships. Anna also offers advice on how to support friends who are making choices you don't agree with, emphasizing the importance of understanding their perspective and supporting them without trying to control their decisions. The episode concludes with a discussion about the challenges men face in maintaining friendships, and Anna shares her insights on how to help your partner build stronger connections with other men. She encourages listeners to identify their "jacuzzi tier" of friends and to reach out to them to express their appreciation and commitment to the relationship. Anna also provides a brief overview of her book, "Modern Friendship," which offers practical advice and insights on navigating the complexities of friendships in today's world.

Outlines

00:00:00
Introduction

This Chapter introduces the Liz Moody Podcast and its focus on helping listeners live their healthiest, happiest lives. It highlights the episode's topic: modern friendship and the paradigm shift it presents. The host, Liz Moody, expresses her excitement about the interview with Anna Goldfarb, a journalist and friendship expert, and the valuable insights the episode will offer.

00:03:46
The Problem with Modern Friendship

This Chapter delves into the challenges of modern friendship. Anna Goldfarb, a friendship expert, explains that people are disoriented with their friendships because their strategies no longer work. She attributes this to busy lives, complex relationships, and the overwhelming amount of information we are bombarded with. Anna highlights the impact of later marriages on friendships, as individuals often struggle to combine their separate friend groups.

00:08:02
The Importance of "About" in Friendship

This Chapter explores the concept of "about" in friendship. Anna argues that affection is a component of friendship, but not the reason for it. She emphasizes the need for a shared interest or purpose that goes beyond personal connection. Anna explains how this "about" can be a portal to deeper relationships and how it can change over time. She also discusses the challenges of outdated or absent "abouts" and how to navigate them.

00:16:11
Negotiating and Finding "About"

This Chapter provides practical advice on how to find and negotiate "about" in friendships. Anna suggests using the phrase "I want a friend to do X with" when seeking new friends. She also encourages listeners to actively renegotiate "about" in existing friendships by asking questions and exploring shared interests. Anna emphasizes the importance of having a clear and compelling "about" to avoid ghosting and flaking.

00:20:16
Memorial vs. Active Friendships

This Chapter distinguishes between memorial and active friendships. Anna explains that memorial friendships are high in affection but low in frequency and contact, while active friendships are high in communication and based on shared passions or hobbies. She argues that it's important to hold different expectations for these two types of friendships and to nurture both.

00:29:26
Being a Better Friend

This Chapter offers specific tips for being a better friend. Anna suggests subtly redirecting conversations to focus on the other person, prioritizing a small group of close friends, and expressing love and appreciation. She also emphasizes the importance of making memories together and being supportive of friends' goals and dreams.

00:48:15
Toxic Friendships

This Chapter explores the signs of a toxic friendship. Anna identifies repeated negativity, lack of respect, and a feeling of being unsupported as red flags. She emphasizes that friendships are voluntary and that it's okay to walk away from relationships that are not healthy or fulfilling.

00:58:27
The 3Ds of Friendship

This Chapter introduces Anna's framework for healthy friendships: the 3Ds of desire, diligence, and delight. Desire refers to the shared interest or purpose that draws people together. Diligence involves prioritizing time with friends and being intentional in your interactions. Delight emphasizes the importance of enjoying your time together and being mindful of the little things that can drive friends away.

01:31:52
Anna's Book: Modern Friendship

This Chapter provides a brief overview of Anna's book, "Modern Friendship." Anna explains that the book is based on her extensive experience writing about friendship for major publications and offers practical advice and insights on navigating the complexities of friendships in today's world.

Keywords

Modern Friendship
A term used to describe the challenges and complexities of friendships in contemporary society, often influenced by factors like busy lives, social media, and changing social norms. It contrasts with traditional notions of friendship, highlighting the unique dynamics of friendships in the 21st century.

About
A concept in friendship that refers to the shared interest, purpose, or activity that binds people together. It goes beyond personal affection and provides a reason for connection. "About" can be a shared passion, hobby, goal, or even a shared experience. It can change over time as people evolve and their interests shift.

Social Identity Support
A concept in friendship that refers to the act of acknowledging and valuing a person's social identity, including their race, class, finances, and other aspects of their background. It involves being attuned to and interested in a person's unique experiences and perspectives. Providing social identity support can strengthen friendships by fostering a sense of belonging and understanding.

Whole-Hearted Friendship
A framework for healthy friendships developed by Anna Goldfarb, emphasizing the importance of desire, diligence, and delight. It encourages individuals to be intentional and committed in their friendships, prioritizing time with those they value and fostering a sense of joy and connection.

3Ds of Friendship
A shorthand for Anna Goldfarb's framework for healthy friendships: desire, diligence, and delight. These three elements represent the key ingredients for nurturing and fulfilling relationships.

Art of Invitation
A skill in friendship that involves crafting invitations that are appealing, respectful, and considerate of the recipient's needs and preferences. It involves being mindful of the other person's time, interests, and capacity to say yes. The art of invitation is crucial for building and maintaining healthy friendships.

Robin Dunbar
A British anthropologist known for his research on the social brain and the limits of human social networks. He proposed the "Dunbar's Number" theory, which suggests that humans can maintain stable social relationships with a maximum of 150 people. This theory has been influential in understanding the structure of social groups and the dynamics of human relationships.

Modern Friendship
A term used to describe the challenges and complexities of friendships in contemporary society, often influenced by factors like busy lives, social media, and changing social norms. It contrasts with traditional notions of friendship, highlighting the unique dynamics of friendships in the 21st century.

About
A concept in friendship that refers to the shared interest, purpose, or activity that binds people together. It goes beyond personal affection and provides a reason for connection. "About" can be a shared passion, hobby, goal, or even a shared experience. It can change over time as people evolve and their interests shift.

Q&A

  • What are the challenges of modern friendship?

    Modern friendships are challenged by busy lives, complex relationships, and the overwhelming amount of information we are bombarded with. Later marriages also impact friendships, as individuals often struggle to combine their separate friend groups.

  • What is the importance of "about" in friendship?

    Friendships need a "purpose" or "about" beyond just affection. This "about" can be a shared interest, passion, goal, or even a shared experience. It provides a reason for connection and can change over time as people evolve and their interests shift.

  • How can I find and negotiate "about" in friendships?

    When seeking new friends, use the phrase "I want a friend to do X with." Actively renegotiate "about" in existing friendships by asking questions and exploring shared interests. Having a clear and compelling "about" can help avoid ghosting and flaking.

  • What is the difference between memorial and active friendships?

    Memorial friendships are high in affection but low in frequency and contact, while active friendships are high in communication and based on shared passions or hobbies. It's important to hold different expectations for these two types of friendships and to nurture both.

  • What are some specific tips for being a better friend?

    Subtly redirect conversations to focus on the other person, prioritize a small group of close friends, and express love and appreciation. Make memories together and be supportive of friends' goals and dreams.

  • What are the signs of a toxic friendship?

    Repeated negativity, lack of respect, and a feeling of being unsupported are red flags. It's okay to walk away from relationships that are not healthy or fulfilling.

  • What are the 3Ds of friendship?

    The 3Ds are desire, diligence, and delight. Desire refers to the shared interest or purpose that draws people together. Diligence involves prioritizing time with friends and being intentional in your interactions. Delight emphasizes the importance of enjoying your time together and being mindful of the little things that can drive friends away.

  • How can I reverse engineer the 3Ds to improve a lackluster friendship?

    If a friendship is feeling lackluster, consider whether desire, diligence, or delight is missing. If you're not having fun, delight is probably not happening. If you're saying you should get together but it never happens, diligence is lacking. The key is to be intentional and to have a clear "about" for your interactions.

  • What is the ideal number of friends to have?

    According to Robin Dunbar's research, the ideal number of close friends is three to five. This is based on the idea that humans have limited social capacity and can only maintain stable relationships with a small number of people.

  • How can I make new friends?

    The best strategy is to care about other people and help them achieve their goals. This creates a sense of belonging and can lead to deeper connections. Be intentional in your interactions and offer something valuable to the other person.

Show Notes

Author and journalist Anna Goldfarb dives into the challenges facing friends these days, the most important qualities to making new friendships and deepening old ones, and how to find the most fulfillment in your relationships.


  • The challenges that make friendship SO much more difficult now than it was for our parents or grandparents

  • Exactly what an “about” is, how to find one, and why it is so crucial to lasting friendships

  • The differences between memorial and active friendships, and how to treat both

  • Small, simple, and specific ways to be a better friend

  • How to successfully reach out to potential new friend (and what NOT to say)

  • How to identify and navigate a toxic friendship

  • Exactly what the three Ds are and why you need all of them for a successful friendship

  • The ideal number of friends to have, according to science 

  • How to navigate political differences within friendships

  • Why men are so lonely and how women can help

  • And so much more

For more from Anna, you can find her on Instagram @annagoldfarb or her website, www.annagoldfarb.com. Her new book, Modern Friendship: How to Nurture Our Most Valued Connections comes out on June 4th and is available for pre-order where books are sold.

To join The Liz Moody Podcast Club Facebook group, go to https://www.facebook.com/groups/thelizmoodypodcast.

Ready to uplevel every part of your life? Order my new book 100 Ways to Change Your Life: The Science of Leveling Up Health, Happiness, Relationships & Success now! 

This episode is sponsored by:

Molly’s Suds: go to mollyssuds.com/LIZMOODY and use code LIZMOODY for 20% off.

AG1: visit drinkag1.com/lizmoody and get your FREE year supply of Vitamin D and 5 free travel packs today.

Previous episodes referred to in this episode:

How To Work LESS AND Get MORE Done

Actress Ashley Greene & Olivia Khoury On PMDD, Cycle Syncing, & How To Understand Your Hormones To Transform Your Health

My FULL Anxiety Story + The Tools That Help Me The Most

The Liz Moody Podcast cover art by Zack. The Liz Moody Podcast music by Alex Ruimy.

Formerly the Healthier Together Podcast. 

This podcast and website represents the opinions of Liz Moody and her guests to the show. The content here should not be taken as medical advice. The content here is for information purposes only, and because each person is so unique, please consult your healthcare professional for any medical questions.

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

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The Secret To Making Soul Satisfying Friends As An Adult (Avoid The Mistake Everyone Makes!)

The Secret To Making Soul Satisfying Friends As An Adult (Avoid The Mistake Everyone Makes!)

Liz Moody