A rambling, chatty—and ultimately comforting—explanation of how interpersonal connections can improve mental and physical health. Psychiatrist Hallowell, a lecturer at Harvard Medical School, draws freely on his personal and professional experiences to frame and support his case. His most basic, passionately held belief is that meaningful connections—with family, friends, pets, with art/beauty, nature, the past, and traditions, with work colleagues, institutions, God, and oneself—are what make life worth living. “The aim of this book is to convince you to make time for connectedness, even if it involves aggravation—and it usually does!” says Hallowell. He bolsters his arguments with scientific studies: the 1980s Speigel study of breast cancer survivors in support groups, for instance, and a more recent Carnegie-Mellon University study showing that use of the Internet is associated with declines in the feeling of connectedness and well-being, because there is no face-to-face human contact. Hallowell also provides illustrative case studies from his practice. Hallowell’s own father suffered from manic-depressive illness, and his mother and stepfather were alcoholics. Hallowell loosely groups his discussion into the various types of connections and offers plenty of help on how to begin to reach out to others. A real boost toward building a lifelong support system, then; this has the overall feel of a long, comfortable chat with a trusted friend.