This piece originally appeared in Forbes on August 17, 2020.
Loneliness as a societal and workplace health issue was not newly-discovered with Covid-19. Researchers have long known that being lonely and not being connected to family, friends or one's community predicts mortality to roughly the same degree as more widely-recognized morbidity factors such as alcohol, smoking, or obesity. This makes sense. We are uniquely social creatures, and it's this social element that allows us to survive. A quote included in behavioral scientist Dr. Robert Cialdini's outstanding book, Influence, is by archaeologist Rickard Leakey, and he says: "We are human because our ancestors learned to share their food and hone their skills in an honored network of obligation." Is it any wonder that a need for connection continues to be critical for survival? Read the rest on Forbes.