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12 Ways How Distance Can Strengthen Your Friendship.

12 Ways How Distance Can Strengthen Your Friendship.

How do you define friendship? A true friend is never apart. He is there with you all the time, and physical distance doesn’t mean anything if there is more to gain in the friendship. In an age where technology can ease communication, there really are no boundaries or limitations to a true friendship.

I have friends who are far away from me, but I do not let these barriers mean anything. Actually I have discovered new meanings and depths in the relationship since we are miles apart. Here is why distance only makes you physically apart but mentally closer with your friend.

“A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.” ― Unknown

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1. You are committed to the friendship even when you don’t see them

Yes, you may have new friends, cover new territories but deep within you are committed to your friend who is more than a mile away. You think about them every now and then. When push comes to shove you still dial that one person’s number and tell them what is bothering you. They are your sidekick and you are their pillar because they always have your back just as you have theirs.

2. You are willing to make the effort even when they seem far away

You want to put the effort to let them aware that you are not so far away. You can talk, text, and update each other on what is happening in your lives.

3. You have so much to share even you have different experiences

Yes, you have different experiences but somewhere there is still that similarity that puts you in touch with sharing your experiences. When you get back in the same city as your friend, you talk effortlessly and never run out of things to say to each other — even if you are currently going through different experiences.

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4. You have great memories even when you do not see each other

Your true friends are like the stars, even when they are not physically close, they have a special place in your heart. You have great memories of the times you spent with them and this is eternal.

5. You will always make a way even when there seems to be noway

Yes, if you do care about someone you will always find a way to break boundaries and sail through borders, because this doesn’t mean anything.

6. You appreciate them better when you see them again

You find them more interesting and can relate with your true friends on a whole new level when you meet them again after a period of separation. Cherish the time you spend if your friends whenever you see them again.

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7. You always have something to talk about

You don’t need to talk everyday but whenever you can talk, there is something to talk about – the past, the present and the future.

8. You have a more purposeful friendship now

Your friendship is more purpose driven when you are physically apart. You know that you do not have much time together so you can discuss subjects that are important and purposeful.

9. You have someone who will always make you feel special when you are down

No one knows you like your true friend. They know what entertains you and what would placate you even in challenging times. It is nice to have someone to call whenever you need to hear just the right thing to get through the day.

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10. You have someone who believes in you even when others don’t

Your friend knows that your being far away is for the right reason. They do not apportion blames or make you feel guilty for being far away. Rather they will find ways to always reach out to you.

11. You know what to say when you see them again

You miss them, you value them, you appreciate them, and being physically apart gives you enough time to reflect on the essence of your friendship with that one true friend.

12. You know they will always be waiting for you

It is to be expected that new, other things will take over your thoughts and time. There will be things that will replace the activities that you once did together. But you are not worried, you are not anxious, you are courageous about what you have established together. And you know that when you see your friend again, every good thing that you have together will be waiting for you.

Featured photo credit: Friends/ Vicky Lazovich via flickr.com

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Casey Imafidon

Specialized in motivation and personal growth, providing advice to make readers fulfilled and spurred on to achieve all that they desire in life.

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Last Updated on June 24, 2019

Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression

Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression

A study [1] published in Depression and Anxiety found that social media users are more likely to be depressed. This was just one of the huge number of studies linking social media and depression[2] . But why exactly do platforms like Facebook and Instagram make people so unhappy? Well, we don’t know yet for sure, but there are some explanations.

Social Media Could Lead to Depression

Depression is a serious medical condition that affects how you think, feel, and behave. Social media may lead to depression in predisposed individuals or make existing symptoms of depression[3] worse explains[4] the study above’s senior author Dr. Brian Primack. So, the problem may not be in social media per se, but how we use it.

Signs You’re Suffering From “Social Media Depression”

If you feel like social media is having a negative impact on your mood, then you may be suffering from “social media depression.” Look for symptoms like:

• low self-esteem,

• negative self-talk,

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• a low mood,

• irritability,

• a lack of interest in activities once enjoyed,

• and social withdrawal.

If you’ve had these symptoms for more than two weeks and if this is how you feel most of the time, then you are likely depressed. Although “social media depression “is not a term recognized in the medical setting, social media depression seems to be a real phenomenon affecting around 50% of social media users. As explained in a review study[5] published in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, if a person has a certain predisposition to depression and other mental disorders, social media use may only worsen their mental health.

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Social Media Could Crush Self-Esteem

We know that social media and depression are in some way linked, but why is this so? Well, according to Igor Pantic, MD, Ph.D.[6], social media use skews your perception about other people’s lives and traits. To explain this further, most people like to portray an idealized image of their lives, personal traits, and appearance on sites like Facebook and Instagram. If you confuse this idealized image with reality, you may be under the false impression that everyone is better than you which can crush your self-esteem and lead to depression. This is especially true for teens and young adults who are more likely to compare themselves to others. If you already suffer from low self-esteem, the illusion that everyone has it better off than you will just make you feel worse.

Causing Social Isolation and Other Negative Emotions

Another commonly cited reason for the negative impact of social media on mental health is its link with social isolation. Depressed people are more likely to isolate themselves socially and chose only to interact indirectly through social media platforms. But communication online tends to be superficial and is lacking when compared to real-life interaction explains Panic. What this means is not that social media leads to isolation but the other way around, possibly explaining why we find so many depressed persons on these sites.

Lastly, social media use may generate negative emotions in you like envy, jealousy, dislike, loneliness, and many others and this may worsen your depressive symptoms.

Why We Need to Take This Seriously

Both depression and social media use are on the rise according to epidemiological studies. Since each one has an impact on the other, we have to start thinking of healthier ways to use social media. Teens and young adults are especially vulnerable to the negative impact of social media on mental health.

Advice on Social Media Use

Although these findings did not provide any cause-effect explanation regarding Facebook and depression[7], they still do prove that social media use may not be a good way to handle depression. For this reason, the leading authors of these studies gave some suggestions as to how clinicians and people can make use of such findings.

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One suggestion is that clinicians should ask patients about their social media habits. Then they can advise them on how to change their outlook on social media use or even suggest limiting their time spent on social media.

Some social media users may also exhibit addictive behavior; they may spend too much time due to compulsive urges. Any compulsive behavior is bound to lead to feelings of guilt which can worsen depressive symptoms.

Having Unhealthy Relationship with Social Media

If you feel like your relationship with social media is unhealthy, then consider the advice on healthy social media use provided by psychology experts from Links Psychology[8]:

Avoid negative social comparison – always keep in mind that how people portray themselves and their lives on social media is not a realistic picture, but rather an idealized one. Also, avoid comparing yourself to others because this behavior can lead to negative self-talk.

Remember that social media is not a replacement for real life – Social media is great for staying in touch and having fun, but it should never replace real-world interactions.

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Avoid releasing personal information – For your safety and privacy, make sure to be careful with what you post online.

Report users who bully and harass you – It’s easy to be a bully in the anonymous and distant world of social media. Don’t take such offense personally and report those who abuse social media to harass others.

The bits of advice listed above can help you establish a healthy relationship with social media. Always keep these things in mind to avoid losing an objective perspective of what social media is and how it is different from real life. If you are currently suffering from depression, talk to your doctor about what is bothering you so that you can get the treatment you need to get better. Tell your doctor about your social media use and see if they could give you some advice on this topic.

Reference

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