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Feeling Lonely? Here’s An Easy Formula For Friendship

The Like Switch is a book written by Dr. Jack Schafer, a retired FBI agent who claims that there is a formula you can follow if you want to be friends with someone. While friendships and relationships seem like extremely personal things that can’t be quantified, Schafer is an expert on human relationships and behavior, so it’s safe to assume that he knows his stuff. 

The formula has four elements: Proximity, frequency, duration and intensity. Proximity refers to the distance between you and another person and the exposure you have to each other. Frequency and duration refer to the amount of times you contact that person and the length of each encounter. Intensity finally refers to how strongly you’re able to satisfy the other person’s psychological or physical needs. According to the formula, the more time you spend with someone, the more they’ll like you and the deeper your relationship will grow.

Our brains have a territory scan, which allows us to assess if the person we’re talking to is worth pursuing when it comes to friendship, based on the analysis of the elements mentioned above.

If you want to be friends with someone, it’s important for them to see you around, and that you become familiar to them so that they feel more comfortable in your presence. To develop the friendship you must extend the amount of time that you’re with that person, increasing the intensity by talking about everyday things and about stuff you have in common. This should be easy since you see each other around regularly. 

Schafer believes that friendships take time to grow, so instead of being insistent and demanding someone to be your friend, you should take things slowly and increase your exposure to them gradually, making the relationship bloom naturally. 

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