Australian life coach, Bella Zanesco, and author of Smart Girls Screw Up Too, has a theory.
Not only is it something she’s observed in her own life, and in the lives of her clients, but Zanesco’s idea also echoes the work of anthropologist Robin Dunbar.
Dunbar famously postulated that one can maintain 150 relationships; that’s family, friends and acquaintances. But in terms of close friends, the ones you call in the midst of a crisis, Dunbar said the circle becomes much smaller.
Zanesco says that number is six. Exactly six.
And they each serve a different purpose.
Speaking to The Pool, Zanesco said, “Each of these people nurtures a different part of you, and you nurture a different part of each of your friends. It’s like this beautiful cycle.”
Here are the six people you need.
1. The Catalyst
This person is an agent of change. They challenge you to transform and take risks, welcoming new opportunities.
They’re the person who knows when you need a new job before you do. Or who intervenes when your relationship is a disaster.
2. The Player
The primary role of this friend is to ensure you never become boring. They bring out the child within you.
They’re the person who makes you laugh when you need it most, and forces you to leave the house and venture beyond your comfort zone.