The need for instant gratification has reshaped the way in which we view relationships since the introduction of social media, dating sites, and online gaming. Our modern consumer-driven society places value on an instant reward. We take a pill if we’re sleepless, exhausted, sad, or need to concentrate. Block numbers, avoid conflict and redirect impositions whenever we feel uncomfortable in an attempt to protect our peace when in reality we are not facing life-long dilemmas head-on.
Instant gratification is the desire to experience pleasure or fulfillment without delay or deferment. The desire to want what we want without putting in much effort to achieve success has trickled down to how we work, live, and ultimately behave in relationships.
Research has shown that when people don’t get what they want, the psychological reaction is anxiety. To capitalize on that desire, many companies are taking consumer anxiety and running with it. This year alone, pharmaceutical companies have prescribed over 40 million adults with anti-anxiety medications.
Good relationships take hard work because its a decision that two people make in order to achieve the same goal..
This is not to say that these cases stem from delayed gratification, but in order to understand life, the good, the bad, and the ugly, it is important for us to know that relationships take hard work, whether it be romantically, professionally, or other, the experiences we have with those around us correspond to one’s overall happiness.
Nurturing Old Friendships while Finding New Ones
Throughout the past month and a half, I’ve been dedicating time to revive my friendships. Calling old friends who I haven’t spoken to in months, making plans (and following through) on brunch dates, meet-ups, and related interests all in an attempt to nurture the relationships that mean the most to me.
Often times we get so caught up in heartless behavior where we don’t try to revive our friendships because of that need for instant gratification. “Well if it’s not happening right now this second, then that person doesn’t matter”. But why?
Why isn’t it okay to not be around? Why do we have to put so much pressure on others to be there for us in our time of want? And the second that he/she doesn’t come through in an insta-second they are then banished from the friendship realm? Having this ideology weakens bonds, restricts growth and replaces itself with social isolation.
Maybe the pharmaceutical companies are on to something.
However, over the last six weeks, I have rekindled old friendships but by doing so I have also fostered new ones in the process. Life has a funny way of forcing you into changing directions when you’ve outgrown stagnate experiences, and through my growth process, I am understanding that my new relationships won’t all look, feel, or act the same as previous friendships, and it is going to be okay. Like my dad always says to me “that’s life baby”.
Knowing When to Put in the Hard Work
Success comes from failing, learning, and trying again. We experience this repeated cycle in romantic relationships, career environments, and the likes, but the only thing that separates those who succeed from those who fail is our ability to know when to put in the hard work in the wake of hardship.
Good relationships take hard work because its a decision that two people make in order to achieve the same goal. With friends, it is the decision to be better friends towards one another, with lovers it’s the decision to stay together despite past discretions, and with those decisions you move forward, you fail, learn, and try again.
But when do we know if they are worth the hard fight?
Connections with others have the power to change our moods, perception of life, love, and happiness. When approaching the actions you should take before choosing to end a relationship, it’s important to adopt the attitude that the only person you can truly change is yourself. We control 100 percent of our half of the dynamic. You’re not a victim in a relationship; ultimately, you can choose to move on.
Even if you eventually decide that the relationship is not worth keeping, as long as you’re in it, you can make a practice of being the best person you can be. You can grow your ability to love, to be open, and to be vulnerable which are all skills that will greatly benefit you in life and future relationships.
Do you believe that good relationships take hard work?