“Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.” – E. F. Schumacker
In an age where we seem to pride ourselves in being intensely busy and remaining connected through technology 24/7, it is easy to forget that it’s the simple things in life that make us happy.
Sometimes we need to find ways to restore this simplicity in our lives. Here are 7 ways to make your life a lot simpler and happier.
1. Call the person, avoid texting
Texting has become a common form of communication, to the point where we have actually forgotten the original purpose of the phone: to actually call a person and speak to them directly. Yes, people, there is actually another person on the other side of that mobile device.
Through texting, It’s very easy for what you want to say to actually be lost in translation. It’s very easy for misunderstandings to happen. And it’s definitely a lot harder to sort out any relationship problems or business issue you may be having. Aside from being incredibly time consuming, the sense of emotion is removed and you can’t actually tell how the person is feeling.Advertising
Would it not be a lot easier if you just picked up the phone and called? One would think so. You could instantly let it be known how you feel. Nothing is lost in translation. The emotion is not removed. There are no misunderstandings. It’s quicker, less time consuming (as you won’t be dwelling on the problem through back and forth messages) and more importantly you will be happier in knowing that you are sorting out the problem.
2. Openly vent your emotions; don’t keep them bottled up
Are you the type of person who has the tendency to hide their emotions? You keep everything inside. When you are angry, you don’t let it be known that you are angry. When you are unhappy with someone, you don’t let that person know. When something someone does irritates you, you don’t tell them.
The problem with this is that it can cause huge stress in your life. It makes you unhappy. Eventually, all these emotions come out, all at once. It’s not pretty. It’s not healthy, both psychologically and physically.
Rather find ways to channel these emotions constructively. Chat with a friend. Find a safe place. e.g. your room where you can openly let these emotions out. Doing this will in the long run surely make you healthier and a lot happier as a person.
3. Create your own memories; avoid the comparison gameAdvertising
How often do you find yourself, scrolling through Facebook, reading post after post of people doing amazing things? You see people travelling the world. Going on hikes. Relaxing with friends. Going out to lunch in beautiful restaurants. Inside you feel a little jealous and you think to yourself. “Why am I not doing these amazing things.?”
Well exactly, why aren’t you? Go out and create your own memories, instead of spending your days reading what others are doing. Visit the places you wanted to visit. Read that book you wanted to read. Climb that mountain. Jump in the dam naked.
Do all those things you want to do and more importantly, stop comparing yourself to others. Avoid the comparison game at all cost. This will not make you happier. What will make you happier is creating your own memories.
4. Maintain open forms of communication; don’t assume
Have you ever guessed what your loved ones or the people you care about are thinking, and been totally wrong? Have you assumed they like something, when in fact this was not the case? Maybe you thought they liked going to a specific restaurant because you have always taken them there, but never actually asked if they enjoyed it?
Assuming and guessing what people think can create complications down the line. Through maintaining open forms of communication and simply asking your loved one’s questions directly, you avoid miscommunication and ensure a healthier and happier relationship.Advertising
5. Actions speak louder than words; don’t panic
We often find ourselves not comforting our loved ones in times of need because we feel we don’t know how to comfort them. We panic about what to do. And what makes it worse is that sometimes your loved ones don’t even want to talk. What do you do?
Sometimes all that is needed is for you to be there. As simple as that. They don’t need words. They don’t want to chat. They just want your touch. They just need a hug. Such a simple action can speak one thousand words.
6. Try something new, don’t hesitate
Do you find yourself hesitating over what to do next? Maybe you are scared of trying something new? Maybe you are scared of what people think? There’s an age old saying:
“It’s better to ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission.”
This means that it’s better to act decisively and apologise for it later than seek someone’s approval to act and possibly risk delay. So if you want to do something do it. Do what makes you happy. Don’t be scared to try something. Don’t be hesitant. You might just find that through trying that something, that you absolutely love it. That it made you a lot happier as a person.
And if it didn’t, well that’s fine. You will survive. Move on to the next thing, knowing that you have eliminated one other thing that doesn’t make you happy.
7. Actively work on your future; stop worrying
We often overcomplicate things, by worrying unnecessarily about the future, instead of actively working on it now. Rather spend time on those things you can control right now and stop worrying about the things you cannot control.
For example, if you want to start your own business, take simple small steps towards achieving that dream that will make you happier.
There is no guarantee as to exactly how the future will turn out, but through focusing on those small things we can control right now, we are on the right track towards a future that will surely be a lot brighter and happier.Advertising
Last Updated on June 24, 2019
Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression
A study  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 . 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 worse explains 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,
• a low mood,
• 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 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.
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., 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, 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.
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:
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.
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.
|||^||NCBI: Association between Social Media Use and Depression among U.S. Young Adults|
|||^||ConsumerHealthDigest: Having Multiple Social Media Accounts Tied to Depression|
|||^||ConsumerHealthDigest: Depression Symptoms – Can Depression Lead to Suicide?|
|||^||Health: The Complex Link Between Social Media and Depression|
|||^||NCBI: Online Social Networking and Mental Health|
|||^||NCBI: Online Social Networking and Mental Health|
|||^||ConsumerHealthDigest: Bad Experiences on Facebook Tied to Depression|
|||^||Links Psychology: How do I keep my social media use healthy?|