The touching social experiment that will make you want a cuppa with Grandpa


What's the last text message you sent to your partner?

What about your mum?

Did you say something important? If it was the last text you ever sent, would it adequately convey how you felt about them?

And what about your last in-person interaction? Were you fully present, or were you glancing down at your phone to check your notifications mid-conversation?

We're drifting away from one another

Arnott’s has released new research uncovering that Australians are contacting each other more than ever through their mobile devices, but in fact, having fewer meaningful, face-to-face interactions as a result.

While 86 percent of Australians contact their loved ones at least once a week using a mobile or digital device, with more than a third doing so daily, only one in four (25 percent) say those interactions are meaningful, with a heartfelt text only being sent to someone they care about a few times throughout the year.

What's more, while 82 percent of Aussies say spending quality time with friends and family brings them meaning in life, only 27 percent are interacting regularly with their loved ones in person.

Tackle fears with common sense. If she's scared of dogs, don't hustle her across the street when one is coming. Demystify the fear. ("Oh, a puppy! Let's ask the owner if we can feel how soft his fur is.") In tense moments—shots come to mind—be sympathetic but not too emotional, says Atlanta-area pediatrician Roy Benaroch. Say, "It will be OK. It will be over in a few minutes," not, "I know—it hurts! It hurts!"

Christmas is still known as the time of year for coming together with friends and family, and Aussies seem to agree. More than two thirds (77 percent) declared that spending quality time with friends and family is the most important thing to them during the silly season and half of those stated that if they could receive one gift at Christmas, they would choose meaningful time with family. Aw!

Image: Supplied

The video that will stay with you

In light of the research, Arnott's decided to conduct a social experiment between families and loved ones.

First, people were asked to read aloud the last text message they sent to one another.

Ranging from "what's for dinner?" to "I've just had the urge to vacuum," most texts weren't particularly deep in terms of emotion.

Next, however, participants were asked to text each other about how much the other person meant to them - which, predictably, is when the waterworks began in the Kidspot office.

Image: Supplied

Say it in person

One by one, we saw friends, relatives and families open up to one another about just how much they valued their relationships.

Children with obesity also have more risk factors for heart disease like high blood pressure and high cholesterol than their normal weight peers. In a population-based sample of 5- to 17-year-olds, almost 60% of children who were overweight had at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD), and 25% had two or more CVD risk factors.

A grandfather burst into tears as he told his grandson that he "meant the world" to him, and let's just say there wasn't a dry eye after that.

Watch the video above and see for yourself - there really is no substitute for catching up for a cuppa with the people that matter.

I'm off to call my Granddad for a chat.

Image: Supplied