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I Deleted 564 Friends On Facebook But I Have Saved 100 Real Life Friendships

I Deleted 564 Friends On Facebook But I Have Saved 100 Real Life Friendships

I was meeting one of my best friends from college last weekend. She lives abroad for work but she will come back at least once a year; every time she’s back she will definitely make an effort to see me and It feels like she never left.

During our chat, she asked: “Do you think it’s getting a lot harder to make friends as we grow up?” I laughed and said: “Who doesn’t think like that?”

Her question stuck in my mind that night, and suddenly I came up with another thought.

I opened my Facebook. Slowly and gradually, I deleted 564 friends that night.

Making friends is actually a lot easier than you think.

Let me prove this.

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Imagine you met someone interesting at a party and you feel like it would be great if you guys could stay connected after the party. So the next thing you did was get onto Facebook, search the name, move your fingertip to the magic button “Add friends” and JOB DONE!

Just one magic click and you guys are friends now. Just as simple as that.

However, I think this redirected me to a deeper question.

What’s the true meaning of friends?

I tried to find an answer by recalling memories on how I made friends before “The Dawn Of Facebook”.

We approach new people, we talk to them, we share, we build trust and most importantly we make connections, in real life. After experiencing parts of our lives together, we value them as “friends.”

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Then I asked myself while looking at my Facebook friend list, “How many of them have gone through that process?”

This is why I decided that I didn’t want to get overwhelmed by life updates from people who I don’t even recall who they are.

On Selecting “Who I want to delete?”

It’s hard at first, I’m not lying. It’s not because my reason isn’t strong enough, but when you have your mouse hovering over the unfriend button, everything seems to come to a final end.

No one likes to say goodbye and clicking that unfriend button makes ending the relationship official.

But ask yourself, “If Facebook didn’t exist, would you like that person to get access to that much information about your life?” and “Do you really want to know what’s happening in their lives or are you just afraid of missing out?”

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Deleting Facebook friend is just as simple as that.

I don’t mean “hey-it’s-nice-knowing-you-for-a-while-but-we-barely-talk-and-I-feel-like-I-don’t-need-you-in-my-life-now-so-farewell-old-friend”, but the truth is an online goodbye doesn’t equal removing that person entirely from your real life.

True friends stay connected even without the help of Facebook (or any kinds of social media). And it’s kinda scary that we need a constant reminder on that.

Will They Get Mad? Maybe I think too much.

What if they come and ask me, “Why did you delete me on Facebook?” And yes, that sounds a bit awkward, doesn’t it?
No one likes to be ignored or removed but I think the problem is people take online relationships too seriously. 

People might think, “It’s not official until it’s Facebook official!”, but let me remind you of this.

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Facebook life is just an Online Life and it doesn’t equal your Actual Life. Why would you spend time on getting social validation instead of having real connections with people you claimed to care about? or at least make an effort to really stay tuned with their lives?

Think about it this way.  How can one honestly be offended if you two don’t write on each other’s walls or feel weird to like each other’s photos or status?

Besides, you might be overthinking because they may not even notice. Either they don’t care or they don’t value social validation as much as you do.

But what if they really ask? Then take this as a good sign. This can mean they do care about you but just getting too busy with their lives to catch up. This gives both of you a good chance to reconnect.

So Now I have fewer friends, on Facebook, then what?

Looking at my “friend list”, the number has shrunk by half but my heart feels a lot more fulfilled and satisfying. Scrolling through my feed, it is clean and clear now.

I can finally see some of the updates from my old friends. I noticed that I have missed a lot of their precious moments because I had too many distractions before. So it’s time to catch up with them, both online and offline.

Decluttering unnecessary relationships doesn’t only free me up for more important people in my life but most importantly, I came to realize my mind and life can be so much simpler if I don’t value social media as much as the social standard does.

More by this author

Jolie Choi

Gone through a few heartbreaks and lost hundreds of friends but I am still happy with my life.

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Last Updated on August 16, 2018

Narcissistic Personality: What Is It and How to Deal with a Narcissist?

Narcissistic Personality: What Is It and How to Deal with a Narcissist?

He asks you for your opinion, but only follows his own advice regardless of what you say.She loves to talk about herself, everything about her is just better than you.  When you try to share anything happy about yourself, she seriously doubts it.

If you know someone who acts like these examples, there’s a chance they might be a narcissist.

What is a narcissistic personality?

Narcissism is a spectrum personality disorder which most of us have.

In popular culture, narcissism is interpreted as a person who’s in love with themselves, more accurately, their idealized selves. Narcissists believe that they are too unique to be understood and that they are so good that they demand for admiration from others.

Psychologist Stephen Johnson writes that,[1]

the narcissist is someone who has buried his true self-expression in response to early injuries and replaced it with a highly developed, compensatory false self.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) describes narcissistic personality as a personality disorder. It is a spectrum disorder, which means it exists on a continuum ranging from some narcissistic traits to the full-blown personality disorder.[2]

Narcissistic Personality Disorder is not very common, but the truth is, we all have some of the narcissistic traits.

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Traits of a narcissist:

  • They have a deep need for admiration and validation. They think they’re special and too unique to be understood.
  • They feel they are superior to other. They achieve more and know a lot more than you.
  • They do not show their vulnerabilities. They fear what others think of them and they want to remain superior in all situations.
  • They are unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others. They want to be the centre of attention and believe that showing emotions is a sign of weakness.
  • They are skilled manipulators and are emotionally abusive. They know how to make use of their charm to take advantage of others to get what they want.

How are narcissists different from others?

Narcissism expert and the author of Narcissism in a Nutshell, Zari Ballard, tried to answer some common questions asked by non-narcissists about what a narcissist thinks and feels from a narcissist’s perspective.[3]

Do narcissists know they are narcissists and are they happy?

We could really care less about how others feel. We enjoy our so called cold existence. True narcissists don’t want to change. We feel in total control of our lives using this method.

Do narcissists know or understand right from wrong?

Narcissists know the difference between right and wrong because they understand cause and effect. There is no “guilty conscience” giving them a clue and they are displaying the symptom of being “indifferent to social norms” while most likely presenting as ‘cold-hearted.’

Narcissists have a very different thinking mechanism. They see things from a different perspective. Unlike non-narcissists and empaths, they don’t have much sympathy and are reluctant to show emotions to others.

Why do people become narcissists?

1. Narcissism is vulnerability taken to an extreme.

The root of a narcissistic personality is a strong resistance to feeling vulnerable with anyone.[4]

Narcissists refuse to put themselves in a position where they feel vulnerable. They fear that others will take advantage of their weaknesses, so they learn to camouflage their weaknesses by acting strong and powerful. The think showing emotions to others is a sign of weakness, so they learn to hide their emotions and act cold-hearted most of the times.

Narcissists live in a state of anxiety because they are highly aware of their emotions and how others think of them.

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Vulnerability aversion, is the root of a narcissistic personality.

2. A narcissistic personality could be a result of a wounded past.

Narcissists are desperate to seek validation constantly because they either didn’t feel worthwhile and valued in the past, or were being paid too much attention as the most precious and unique one in the world.

Faulty or inadequate parenting, for example a lack of limit setting, is believed to be a major cause, and both permissive and authoritarian styles of parenting have been found to promote narcissistic symptoms.[5]

Both parents who fail to see the worth in a child, and parents who spoil and give excessive praise to the child promote narcissism as the child grows. While the former ones make the child feel inferior of others and want to get more attention, the latter ones encourage an idealized-self in the child.

How to deal with a narcissist?

1. If someone close to you is a narcissist, embrace the differences.

There’re different personality types and not everyone will think and act the same as you do. Instead of trying to change others, learn to accept the differences and strike a balance when you really have to communicate with them.

2. Don’t try to change them, focus on your own needs.

Try to understand that narcissists are resistant to change, it’s more important for you to see who they really are, instead of who you want them to be. Focus on how you feel, and what you want yourself to be.

Embrace the fact that there’re different types of personality and the only thing you can control is your attitude and your own actions.

3. Recognize what they do only comes from their insecurity.

Narcissists are quite vulnerable deep inside, they question others because that’s how they can make themselves feel better.

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When you learn that what a narcissist does to you is nothing personal, but something that comes from their insecurity, you know that sometimes they just need a certain amount of reassurance.

This is especially important if the narcissist is someone you have to closely work with, or if they’re your family member. The right amount of reassurance can calm them down and get the tasks on hand completed.

4. Ask them what would others think instead of what’d others feel.[6]

Narcissists don’t feel guilty, but they care about how others think of them deep in their heart.

Clinical psychologist Al Bernstein explains:

There are just things, like other people’s feelings, that narcissists rarely consider. If you have their ear, don’t tell them how people might react; instead, ask probing questions. Narcissists are much more likely to act on ideas that they think they thought up themselves.

If you have to work with a narcissist closely, focus on the facts and ideas, not the emotions.

5. Let go of the need of getting a narcissist’s approval.

You’re not who a narcissist says you are. Don’t let their blame game undermine your self-esteem, and don’t argue with them just to defend what you believe is right.

There is no point arguing with a narcissist just to prove them wrong because they will not give in proving themselves right. It’s more likely that you’ll get more upset when they disagree with you in an unpleasant way.

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Know your own worth and detach from a narcissist’s opinion on you.

6. If a narcissist is hurting you, stay away from them.

Remember, a healthy relationship is two-sided. It’s about mutual respect and it’s based on give and take. But any kind of relationship with a narcissist is likely to be the contrary, it’s about making the narcissist happy and constantly supporting them. A relationship like this will only weigh you down and is unhealthy for your growth.

7. Set a boundary and always keep it.

If you’re setting a boundary, you have to be willing to keep it. When a narcissist sees that you’re trying to take back control of your life, they will try to test your limits, it’s just their instinct to do it.

Be prepared that your boundary will be challenged. Make your boundary clear, have all the actions needed to be taken in your mind.

For example, if you have decided to stop communicating with them, they will likely to show up in front of you just to talk to you. Be brave enough to keep your boundary, don’t back down and get close to them again; or else they will not take your boundary seriously any more.

8. Learn when to walk away.

When a narcissist starts to make you feel uncomfortable and doubt about yourself, it’s time to pick yourself up and give yourself enough respect to just walk away from them.

If you’re in love with a narcissist, you should seriously think about ending the relationship and move on for a better life. If the narcissist is your family member, you don’t have to be cruel to them, but it’s better to keep distance from them.

Reference

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