The 2021 checklist: Types of relationships we should include in our lives in the new year

Man is a social animal and our relationships come in various forms: friendship, familial, marital, professional, romantic and more. Each one deserves a place of its own irrespective of its bearing in our day-to-day lives. We often tend to take for granted how much the small talk with our colleague during coffee-break or that buddy you meet occasionally matters. We often also overlook ourselves being taken for granted.

Talking about building healthy relationships, Dr Riddhima Gehi, Pranic Healer and Founder of Credence Rehabilitation and Wellness, says, “Relationships are a form of energy exchange. It is very important to associate with supportive and like-minded people who understand our point of view and thought processes, who are energetically compatible with us.”

Let alone 2020

The bygone year has made us even more aware of the uncertainty of life and thrown light on the value of our treasured contacts. Sanjana Bafna Ranka, mental health expert and Founder of The Equilibrium, avers, “The unnecessary baggage like anger and hatred we had carried for long now seems extrinsic. Let’s bother less about others, stop worrying about society and the people who don’t love us. Instead let’s appreciate our beloved family and friends, and cherish their presence.”

Workplace equations

After the experience of work from home (WFH), our attitude towards our co-workers has transformed radically. An ongoing re-emergence to work, for instance, coming back to an original or revised vocation for a couple of months without relapse of health complications, rests on a combination of individual and social stimuli.

WFH has shown all of us the crucial role that our colleagues played in our daily life, and the importance a healthy work-place environment has in our mental well-being. Dr Kedar Tilwe, Consultant Psychiatrist, Fortis Hospital Mulund & Hiranandani Hospital, Vashi, informs, “Missing out on the office banter, discussions and lunchtime conversations has been one of the major adjustments that people have had to cope with during WFH. As a result, a lot of people are now able to empathize better, have become more tolerant of their colleagues, and in most cases more appreciative of their importance in daily life.”

Encouraging a congenial workplace is of prime importance, an atmosphere which makes employees feel appreciated and respected in order to improve work ethics and make the shift back to work effortless.


Co-living is the need of the hour for young working professionals and students which gives them a chance to interact constructively. According to Kahraman Yigit, Co-Founder and CEO, Olive by Embassy, a co-living space, “The pandemic has compelled people to prefer places that offer greater safety along with fully furnished facilities. In consideration to the extensive offerings that co-living spaces and shared accommodations offer, along with ensuring enhanced safety protocols, this alternative will gradually become a necessity for modern migrants as they adjust and familiarize themselves with the new normal.” In keeping with the increasing demand for affordable accommodation in cities, co-living will continue to offer feasible and sociable options.

My biggest learning this year was the importance of each and every individual around me, as our strength lies in being a part of the community. Sometimes we just need to remind ourselves how important kindness is.
Bhuvan Bam, Influencer, comedian, writer

Cupid’s game-plan

Meaningful relationships are ‘in’ while casual relationships seem to have taken a beating. “The romance arena has completely changed during 2020 with the pandemic. Individuals are becoming more conscious about their choices by giving more priority to mental compatibility rather than physical attraction,” reveals Dr Riddhima.

Dr Kedar Tilwe, enlightens, “After a year of necessary lockdowns and mandatory social distancing which has become the ‘New Normal’; the younger generation seems to be looking out for more emotionally enriching relationships. There is also a visible effort to work on the differences and rebuild the current relationship.”

The lockdown has brought a sense of apprehension in singles who were holed up in loneliness as was evident from apps like QuackQuack and Gleeden that went berserk with millions of users signing up for virtual dating. “On crossing 11 Million users we also decided to introduce the much desired and awaited app feature like Video Calling on the Android app to help create a more engaging and fun-filled experience on the application, for our users,” divulges Ravi Mittal, Founder of QuackQuack, an online dating app for Indian singles.

Gratitude and thankfulness

Let us be more forthcoming with our ‘Thank you’, ‘I love you’ and ‘Appreciate your kind words’ to the people around us, especially the front-line workers who put their lives at risk for us. Thankfulness doesn’t alter the milieu. It basically bleaches the crystal you look through so you can see the different shades. The pandemic has made us realise that our family, friends and neighbours deserve much more gratitude than we ever thought of. In times of distress, they extended their care and concern in myriad ways. Thankfulness and appreciation make sense of your past, convey peace for today, and spring an awareness for tomorrow.

“Though this year has created a havoc on everyone’s lives, all we need is a positive mindset and never-give-up attitude to face the new year. On the whole, let’s leave our past baggage, embrace the uncertainty, and start our new year with the attitude of gratitude,” asserts Sanjana Bafna.

Be the change

Bhuvan Bam, influencer, comedian, writer, feels, “What has changed for good amidst 2020’s pandemic, lockdown, forest fires, and mass layoffs, is the face of humanity. My biggest learning this year was the importance of each and every individual around me, as our strength lies in being a part of the community. Sometimes we just need to remind ourselves how important kindness is.” 

“Gratitude, tolerance, empathy, sharing, understanding, kindness, forgiveness and the importance of each of these in our relationships has been perhaps the most important takeaway learnt during the lockdown. Not to mention the critical need and support system that played a role in helping tide over adversity,” winds up Dr Kedar Tilwe!

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