A Narrowing Emotional Bandwidth

After the past year's lockdowns, making time for meaningful connections becomes more important than ever.

COMMENTARY

There is a plethora of research to show that maintaining healthy relationships plays a role in longevity. We cultivate friendships over our lifespan and recognize the value they have in our growth and development.

In recent years I have come to the conclusion that our society is living in a connected web with paradoxical effects in the form of loneliness. We have resorted to social media and text messaging as our main way of communication. The reasons for this are likely multifactorial: generational shift as it relates to utilization of technology, work fatigue, and life/role transitions. I miss the days of having meaningful phone conversations. We have become overloaded with the demands of family and work resulting in a narrowing of our emotional bandwidth. My hope is that we find a communication balance and become more intentional about continuing to foster healthy relationships.

I will leave with some food for thought in the form of a poem.

Disconnected Network

Entangled muted gossamer web

weighed down by work lassitude and life transitions left to lure seasonal loneliness

Dr Clark is clinical assistant professor at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine-Greenville and medical director & division chief for Adult Inpatient and Consult-Liaison Services for the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine at Prisma Health-Upstate. He serves as the Diversity & Inclusion Section Editor and Advisory Board member for Psychiatric TimesTM.