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Saturday, November 26, 2022

The Glittering of the Stars: 10 Important Habits for Couples regarding Social Media

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  1. Take time to talk to each other online and offline. You are made for each other, not for the Internet and social media; the Internet and social media are channels of communication. Remember to chat with your loved one online as you chat with others. In the same way, take some time offline to share together your life and moments by chatting, watching a movie or television, sharing a meal, praying and meditating, taking a walk or doing some exercise, or attending to your hobbies such as reading, studying the Bible or Qur’an, listening to a sermon, gardening, feeding a pet, cooking a meal together or attending to the flowers. These are worthwhile activities for you as a person and together as a couple because they make you healthy physically and psychologically.
  2. Maintain your individuality and independence. You are your own person and hence your individuality and independence are essential for your own existence and for the success of any relationship. Every person wants to feel free even in a relationship. Therefore, neither you nor your partner should be swallowed by the other; instead, you are partners in a relationship. Subsequently, you can share your phone and computer and emails including passwords to the extent that you maintain clear and healthy boundaries. Besides, each of you has different comfort levels and this should be observed and respected even when it comes to online privacy and social media. Usually, the older more mature married couples will share accounts more than the younger couples who tend to be more uncomfortable and suspicious of each other. In the end, you need to develop more trust in each other. Amidst all this, it is very healthy to allow each other to have some privacy and to be able to communicate freely with family, friends, colleagues at work and other people without the watchful eye of your spouse. The rule of thumb is, that you don’t need to monitor each other online or offline. Instead, you should feel comfortable undertaking your tasks and come up with accommodating ways that generally improve your relationship.
  3. Write a love note as often as you can. Everyone wants to feel loved and this is true of you just as it applies to your partner. You are always texting and calling other people, so text and call him or her as well. This makes your partner feel that you also care for them and have them in mind. There are flowers, images, emojis and texts to send so you don’t have to struggle as much.
  4. Do not stalk your ex. Many people, especially those who are insecure and narcissists are constantly stalking either their ex, their spouse’s ex or both. Of course, the reasoning is that they want to see what the ex is doing and if they are still together. In some instances, this is extended to phone calls, texts and messages. The rule of thumb is, that this temptation is shallow and not worthwhile. While it is understandable that everyone’s a little bit insecure, stalking does not necessarily improve your present relationship. Indeed, checking up on your ex is sometimes a coping mechanism the ‘I wish we could get back together’ especially when your current relationship is not thriving as well as it should. However, there is no need to constantly look up to your partner because, in actual essence, the love flames blew out. In other instances, you might be overwhelmed by them and how they are doing especially in their newfound love and this is at worst emotionally confusing and draining. Once you are in a relationship, settle down and move forward. Social media is not your spy and do not see it that way as you will be confused and unhappy.
  5. Do not be too demanding online and about online issues. Certainly, people have their preferences but it is important that you both understand your feelings and relationship rather than make it confusing with the social media frenzy. For example, it is good to share your passwords with your partner in case of an urgent need. This does not mean that they will be looking up your calls or texts on your phone or reading your emails; it is just a safety precaution. Also, neither of you should be so obsessed with the other that they keep demanding that they tag them in every single, photo, status, video, text or email even if it seemingly has nothing to do with their relationship. This can be a sign of insecurity or low self-esteem, especially in a more suspicious and demanding partner. Instead, decide what is most acceptable, and hence useful in your relationship. Also, it is not a bad thing to be actively involved with each other online. However, more important is to make your relationship meaningful to yourselves. A happy contented couple is more focused on each other.
  6. Do not filter your posts, phone calls, texts or emails. Naturally, if you are dishonest and not as trustworthy, you fear your spouse or someone else will stumble on some information that you consider to be at the edge. A huge red flag of a relationship that is not doing as well is the (constant) filtering of phone calls, texts, photos, emails and posts so that your partner doesn’t see them. Unless you are planning on a (positive) surprise, you would not be filtering or blocking your significant other from seeing any of your posts, texts or emails. This is because this amounts to being dishonest because you most probably have something to hide. Again, it’s all about the importance of your relationship and trust includes being transparent.
  7. Avoid falsehoods. You have to be the same person online and offline, that is, physically and on social media. Hence you shouldn’t feel the need to present a double-faced person or false face. Many people would like to present two different personalities, like being unhappy and sad while pretending to be happy and contented. This shows someone totally different. In the same way, and just in ordinary living, don’t go overboard with showing off your relationship. Instead, a healthy mature couple does not need to tell the World and the social networks anything about them; people just need to know you are together if that is important to them. Meanwhile, the two of you should feel comfortable and should be happy with each other. Remember, the relationship is about you as a couple not about your social media networks and other forms of public display of affection.
  8. Avoid bragging on the media. Mature couples are in love not out to show off. They let each other know they’re together, and the two of you form a united front. In that case, you don’t need to brag about yourselves or about every single thing your partner is doing. Those in a happy relationship who are contented with each other know when, and the value of a compliment; they feel amazing online or offline. Again, the context matters so much and many people have witnessed His Excellency the President Uhuru Kenyatta meet his wife at the end of her ‘Beyond Zero’ races and give her a warm hug. That is essentially in good order and the President has indeed been the first to congratulate Her Excellency the First Lady on her splendid performance. The performance by the President and First Lady is superb in context and content; it simply fills their life because it is done in the context of an event, filling it with positive feelings and vibes and embracing the partner while at the same time thanking your partner for taking care of you. The President has set a wonderful pace. This is very good sharing and not the ‘letting all your friends and the World know’ that people keep displaying on social media and letting us into your World by sharing something that’s happening to you. However, once again, you can do it if it is in context and you highly consider it as being supportive.
  9. Avoid airing dirty laundry in public. If you are too open on social media and social networks, you are in many ways inclined to clear the air on many issues, good or bad, that come up about your relationship. Many people tend to think that it is the rich and famous and the celebrities, the stars, politicians and media celebrities that have problems with their relationships and marriage. However, the truth is that, even ordinary people and other professionals including lawyers, teachers, doctors, nurses, pastors of religion, bankers and others also have challenges in their relationships. The obvious difference is that the rich and famous are more published and in the public domain A happy mature couple wouldn’t post anything online about their differences including arguments, disagreements and other points of contention. We understand some people call fights and wrangles, especially among the rich and famous, great entertainment but in actual fact, these public displays do not work for the mutual good of any one of them. In addition, it is disrespectful and often (negatively) changes your perception of your own relationship. In many cases, the tearing apart is irreparable. This is because a relationship is both important and private and arguments are resolved amicably, not online or offline.
  10. Badmouthing your spouse. As humans, we are hurt deeply when we are heartbroken and the natural reaction is often to spill all the beans in the sack. It is imperative that we style up in this age and times of social media and literally learn how to handle our hopes and fears, good and bad times as well as our frustrations and disappointments. We need to learn to avoid slandering our spouse or partner even when the two of you break up. Many people aim at or think that they will attract attention and sympathy when they outline all the evil of their former spouse and ex. Of course, this is more of a coping mechanism. The truth is that you are hurt and hurting and you need to heal, and your heart amended. On social media, you will receive both candid love and condemnation as the two of you and others join in the fray. Instead of turning to social media, you can talk to a sincere friend, pastor of religion or counsellor – this enables you to calm down and deal amicably with burning issues in your life. The truth is that social media is sometimes pure entertainment for some and they will find your story appealing though at the end of the day, they too have their own issues and certainly very little or no time for your antics. Besides, people laugh it off or just gossip about it. However, you can decide to outline or tell your story after you have calmed down if you and others find it enriching and useful to other people. In that case, this is not just narration but aimed at psychologically healing others in a similar predicament and hopefully assisting many others to avoid such pitfalls.
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Dr. Geoffrey Wangohttps://counsel-lingmagazine.co.ke/
Many people often ask me about my personal stand, my passion in life and how I got into Counselling Psychology and why in particular the establishment and writing in their favourite publication, The Counsel-ling Magazine. Colleagues and students, participants in various seminars and others suggested that I should include some information that would assist clients, practitioners and students to perhaps establish a career, or even assess and evaluate their ethical, moral and professional standards. Well, this allows for personal reflection and I feel it wise to include a few remarks about my fervour on counselling, mentoring and education as well as various aspects of life.
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