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He Asked People To Give Relationship Advice, And This One Is The Most Important And Repetitive One

He Asked People To Give Relationship Advice, And This One Is The Most Important And Repetitive One

Romantic relationships can be difficult to navigate and sometimes, they don’t work out. Other times, you manage to find the person of your dreams out of the giant sea of available fish. When that happens, you probably want everything to work out so you can spend the rest of your lives together. But, how exactly do you make your relationships work out? By asking for relationship advice from people in happy relationships!

That is exactly what author and blogger Mark Manson set out to do just before getting married. He sent out a relationship advice request to all of his readers with one qualification. They must be married for longer than 10 years and still happy in their relationship. He asked responders to pass on their relationship advice to other couples and the response was more than he expected. Nearly 1,500 people sent in their relationship advice. [1]

Mark noticed something. Most of the pieces of advice were similar. The most common bit of relationship advice was: “Be together for the right reasons”.

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Most Common Piece of Relationship Advice

Be together for the right reasons. To have a healthy relationship, both partners need to feel admiration and respect for one another. When you’re with another person for the right reasons, you benefit through personal growth and so does your partner.

As most relationship advice will tell you, being in a healthy relationship is good for you. Having somebody to come home to, who you legitimately love to share your time with, can actually make you healthier. Not only that, but you’ll feel more motivated to accomplish your goals and you’ll probably get more done as well. Maintaining happiness gives you hope and can help relieve the stress of life’s difficult moments. [2]

But, you and your partner will only experience these benefits if you really love each other. Unfortunately, people end up in relationships for all the wrong reasons far too frequently.

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Wrong Reasons to Be In A Relationship

Feeling Lonely

Maybe you met your significant other at a time in your life when you were feeling lonely or worried that you’d never meet the right person. Or maybe you’re staying in a relationship that you know isn’t right because of the fear of never finding somebody else. According to Carole Lieberman, MD and psychiatrist, “They [women] convince themselves that even a selfish, boring, or abusive boyfriend is better than no boyfriend at all.” [3] The same is true for men. Follow the relationship advice, don’t risk your happiness.

Fear of Losing an Entire Family

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Another wrong reason to be with somebody else is for their family. Lots of people love their significant other’s family, particularly if the relationship has gone on for a long time. Sound familiar? Breaking up with that one person suddenly seems like you’ll be losing an entire family. Don’t let that stop you. It’s not a good enough reason to stay with somebody. If it’s the only reason, neither one of you will be happy.

Hoping that He/She Would Fix Everything That’s Wrong In Your Life

If you think that having a partner will magically fix everything that’s wrong in your life, you’re not following good relationship advice. Being with somebody because you think they can relieve your emotional issues is the wrong reason to be with somebody. Not only that, but you might find yourself in a codependent situation. This is when you put up with somebody else’s unhealthy behavior and they put up with yours because neither person wants to be alone. Not good.

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Remember, finding the right relationship is not impossible. It just takes being honest with yourself about why you want to have a significant other. Once you’ve found the person that you want to grow old with and create a life with, follow the most common relationship advice discussed above. Make sure the two of you are in it for the right reasons.

Featured photo credit: freestocks.org via pexels.com

Reference

More by this author

Amber Pariona

EFL Teacher, Lifehack Writer, English/Spanish Translator, MPA

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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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