If you haven’t figured it out yet, life is complicated. Especially when you’re between the ages of 15 and 25. Most young people don’t have to pay bills, take care of children, or work a full-time job. But we certainly have troubles of our own. We’ve all taken a ride on that crazy, roller-coaster of love. One second you’re experiencing the exciting rush of free-falling into passion, and the next second you’re throwing up the remains of a relationship gone sour. And then there’s all that pressure to be cool, be funny, be outgoing, be fashionable, be nice, be blah blah blah. And finally, we’re constantly trying to figure out what we want to do in life, what person we want to be, and how we’re gonna get there. Jeepers, someone get me a bud light…or ten.
But maybe it doesn’t have to be so crazy, just like that lovable Ke$ha tells us through song. She often sings about partying it up, not letting men screw her over, and loving life. Here’s what she told Seventeen magazine in an interview:
“I think you can be this total maniac onstage and act like a complete idiot but also be respectful, really positive, and smart. You don’t have to be just one thing”
She’s certainly confident and isn’t afraid to stand out. Say what you will about her wild behavior, but Ke$ha has a good outlook on life. She seems like someone who doesn’t get too stressed out all that often. Could it be because she brushes her teeth with a bottle of Jack?
But in all seriousness, maybe Ke$ha’s message of being carefree is right – maybe things don’t have to be so complicated. Perhaps even the stickiest issues can be figured out. A good way to do that is to seek out what the experts have to say about the “big” issues – like love, happiness, and growing up. In this blog, I will post various articles I find that discuss these issues. I will often insert my own opinions, which are based on experiences that have taught me a thing or two about life (feel free to refute them).
To start, here’s a hot topic: keeping up a relationship. Psychologist Douglas LaBier discussses in his article “Can You Resurrect Your Love Relationship from the Dead Zone?” how to keep a long-term relationship alive. According to him, in order to do this, you must learn to “forget yourself” in the relationship.
Here’s the link to the article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/douglas-labier/can-you-resurrect-your-lo_b_859964.html
“By ‘forgetting yourself’ I’m referring to a conscious choice to behave in ways that serve and support your partner rather than just yourself….Ask yourself how you feel when you do something or give something to someone who really enjoys and appreciates what you give — whether it’s emotional or material. You probably recognize that it just feels good, period. That’s the model for fueling positive energy in a relationship, because such action comes from the heart, for the sake of giving, without regard for getting something back”
Two important practices, he says, are two-way communication and openness, and collaboration toward joint, common goals.
Personally, I’ve been in a healthy relationship for over a year and a half now, which is not all that long in the grand scheme of things, but I have found what LaBier says to be true. If you gain happiness from the relationship by trying to make your cutie happy, then a good balance is struck. When this is done successfully, LaBier says that the brain scans of these long-term couples are similar to the scans of couples who have just fallen madly in love. Now that’s what I like to hear.