Relating a variety of people in different settings brings complexity and novelty into our lives. Consequential strangers broaden our world view, allow us to exercise different aspects of our identity, and link us to information we can’t get from our intimates. Studies also suggest that they can provide a hedge against mental decline, allow us to move up the social ladder, and make us more adaptable and better able to deal with whatever confronts us than people who lack such connections. Consequential strangers also drive social movements (see excerpt) and marketing campaigns.
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