My good friends Alia McKee and Tim Walker recently launched a new project together – Lifeboat. It’s a unique addition to the progressive movement landscape, focusing on an under-discussed yet very important topic: friendship. Tim & Alia explain what Lifeboat is and why they started it:
We’re in a friendship crisis.
The average American adult reports having only one real friend. Paradoxically, in an age of Facebook and always-on connections, a growing body of science proves what we already feel deep in our gut: we’re actually lonelier and more isolated than ever before. The way many of us use the internet is only making the crisis worse.
The solution isn’t to retreat from the web. It’s to aim higher—to re-think what friendship means in adulthood. Indeed, it’s time to explore uncharted relationship territory—academic research, philosophy, expert advice and our own heads and hearts—for a better path forward.
Lifeboat is a movement of people rediscovering deep friendships. We’re not offering grand solutions or complex schemes, but instead, simple things that work. Here you’ll find our unique content on the art and science of friendship—full of inspiration, learning and practice. It’s designed to help move us beyond fast-food-friendships and become self-assured friendship pioneers!
For those who choose it, Lifeboat is a pathway to living more fully with friends.
It’s an original project focusing on a real challenge that anyone who’s grown up in or on the internet can relate to. They’re developing useful and interesting content that explores their research and original ideas about friendship and the friendship crisis. They’ve even written a friendship manifesto that frames their project:
We believe in great friendship.
Friends electrify our lives —
And light us up with meaning, health and happiness.
We are no strangers to isolation and loneliness.
The puzzling paradox that in our hyperconnected age —
The average American has only one real friend.
We feel this friendship crisis. But we refuse to retreat.
Instead we dig in. Choosing to forego fastfood friendships —
And rediscover what great friendship really means.
We take friendship back.
From the Internet, from our schedules, from the breakneck pace of our busy lives —
Purposefully reinvesting in the people that matter most.
We explore the uncharted art and science of friendship.
Learning from experts and each other and practicing from our own heads and hearts —
How to be better, get deeper and live more fully with our friends.
We are on this path back to friendship — pioneering something greater together.
Are you in?
They’ve created an insider email list that delivers regular content. Toss in some great visuals, brilliant design, and the fact that they are the only people out there who are organizing and mobilizing on the issue of friendship, it’s very easy for me to recommend this project to people. Go check out Lifeboat. There’s a ton of great content and it’s one of the most original and fascinating projects I know taking place in the progressive movement space.