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The Less You Care, The Simpler And Better Your Life Will Be

The Less You Care, The Simpler And Better Your Life Will Be

Let’s be honest. Life can be complicated most of the time. At its worse, it’s stressful, exhausting, and difficult to understand. Granted, this isn’t the absolute rule, but chances are you can relate to this. Think about how you spend your typical day. Is it happy-go-lucky and carefree or do you feel pressure most of the time? How many decisions are you faced with on a daily basis? Do you stress about every single one of them?

It’s time to take control of your life! You deserve better. Nobody should have a complicated, stressful life when it isn’t necessary. If you accept that you deserve better, that you shouldn’t stress needlessly, your life will take on a more simplistic and more enjoyable aspect. So, what can you do to take control of your life and stop stressing? Take a look below.

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“Care less and you’ll stress less.”

The trick to living a simpler and better life has nothing to do with thinking positively, with smiling, or with meditating. Don’t expect that sort of advice here. Self-love means caring about yourself. The truth is, if you want self improvement and happiness in your life you need to have the confidence to stop caring about so many little things.

You’re probably thinking that this sounds like the opposite of everything you’ve ever heard and you’re right. Author Mark Manson writes about this concept in his book. There are only so many things in life that you can possibly care about. Stop caring about the things that don’t matter.

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“Going back to a simpler life is not a step backward.” – Yvon Chouinard

Think about all of those so-called stressful decisions you make every day. Really think about them. Is your happiness truly bound to finding the perfect dress, taking a better vacation than your friends, or even buying the latest cell phone? No, it isn’t.

In your quest for self improvement, have the confidence to reassess your decisions- to decide for yourself what is important and what isn’t. Self-love is not about making sure you have the best of everything that the market offers, so why are you made to feel this way? One quote from Mark Manson’s book explains it perfectly, because caring a lot “about more stuff is good for business.”

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“It’s only by saying ‘no’ that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.”- Steve Jobs

How do you follow this advice? How do you stop caring about the things that don’t matter much? Turns out, finding happiness through a simpler life is all about saying, “No”. Focus on your relationship with yourself. Look deep down inside of yourself, find the magic word, and make it part of your daily communication. Try saying “no” to everything, with some very carefully-considered exceptions.  You’ll find that your life becomes much simpler after employing this practice.

“Just as ripples spread out when a single pebble is dropped into water, the actions of individuals can have far-reaching effects.” – Dalai Lama

Happiness comes from living a simpler life. As you work toward achieving this goal, remember that every decision you make has a consequence. Caring about fewer things and saying “no” more often does not mean that you should not practice kindness. Living more intentionally is just the opposite. Plan out your life, but know that everything you do will affect someone else. Your power to change somebody’s life is in your communication, your actions, and your decisions. Incorporate simple changes in your life that promote kindness. Remember, simply smiling at a stranger could be enough to change their entire day.

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By caring less, learning to say no, and incorporating more kindness into your daily life, you’ll be well on your way to a simpler and better life.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via pexels.com

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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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