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Thursday, March 20, 2014

Friendship: The Laws of Attraction

The conventional wisdom is that we choose friends because of who they are. But it turns out that we actually love them because of the way they support who we are.

When people are asked, "What gives meaning to your life?" friendship figures at the top of the list. Yet the dynamics of friendship have remained mysterious and unquantifiable. Like romantic love, friendships were thought to "just happen." New research shows that the dance of friendship is nuanced—far more complex than commonly thought. With intriguing accuracy, sociologists and psychologists have delineated the forces that attract and bind friends to each other, beginning with the transition from acquaintanceship to friendship. They've traced the patterns of intimacy that emerge between friends and deduced the once ineffable "something" that elevates a friend to the vaunted status of "best." These interactions are minute but profound; they are the dark matter of friendship.

Entering The Friendship Zone

Years ago researchers conducted a study in which they followed the friendships in a single two-story apartment building. People tended to be friends with the neighbors on their respective floors, although those on the ground floor near the mailboxes and the stairway had friends on both floors. Friendship was least likely between someone on the first floor and someone on the second. As the study suggests, friends are often those who cross paths with regularity; our friends tend to be coworkers, classmates, and people we run into at the gym.

It's no surprise that bonds form between those who interact. Yet the process is more complex: Why do we wind up chatting with one person in our yoga class and not another? The answer might seem self-evident—our friend-in-the-making likes to garden, as do we, or shares our passion for NASCAR or Tex-Mex cooking. She laughs at our jokes, and we laugh at hers. In short, we have things in common.

But there's more: Self-disclosure characterizes the moment when a pair leaves the realm of buddyhood for the rarefied zone of true friendship. "Can I talk to you for a minute?" may well be the very words you say to someone who is about to become a friend.

"The transition from acquaintanceship to friendship is typically characterized by an increase in both the breadth and depth of self-disclosure," asserts University of Winnipeg sociologist Beverley Fehr, author of Friendship Processes. "In the early stages of friendship, this tends to be a gradual, reciprocal process. One person takes the risk of disclosing personal information and then 'tests' whether the other reciprocates."

Reciprocity is key. Years ago, fresh out of film school, I landed my first job, at a literary agency. I became what I thought was friends with another assistant, who worked, as I did, for an infamously bad-tempered agent. We ate lunch together almost every day. Our camaraderie was fierce, like that of soldiers during wartime. Then she found a new job working for a publicist down the street. We still met for lunch once a week. In lieu of complaining about our bosses, I told her about my concerns that I wasn't ready to move in with my boyfriend. She listened politely, but she never divulged anything personal about her own life. Eventually our lunches petered out to once a month, before she drifted out of my life for good. I was eager to tell her my problems, but she wasn't eager to tell me hers. The necessary reciprocity was missing, so our acquaintanceship never tipped over into friendship.

Why Some (And Only Some) Friends Stick

Once a friendship is established through self-disclosure and reciprocity, the glue that binds is intimacy. According to Fehr's research,

Thursday, March 6, 2014

I’m not Mad

Drawing is the honesty of the art. There is no possibility of cheating. It is either good or bad.
Have no fear of perfection-you’ll never reach it. Mistakes are almost always of a sacred nature. Never try to correct them. On the contrary: rationalize them, understand them thoroughly. The first man to compare the cheeks of a young woman to a rose was a poet; the first to repeat it was an idiot.
The difference between false memories and true ones is the same as for jewels: it is always the false ones that look the most real, the most brilliant.
At the age of six years I wanted to be a chef. At the age of seven I wanted to be Napoleon. My ambitions have continued to grow at the same rate ever since. Every morning when I awake, the greatest of joys is mine: that of being Salvador Dali. There are some days when I think I’m going to die from an overdose of satisfaction.
I do not paint a portrait to look like the subject, rather does the person grow to look like his portrait. Many people do not reach their eighties because they spend too much time in their forties.
The only difference between me and a madman is that I am not mad.
by Salvador Dali
Shared via Paulocoelho

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

18 Things I Wish Someone Told Me When I Was 18

You better be born to do it!  Don’t waste your life fulfilling someone else’s dreams and desires.
  1. Commit yourself to making lots of mistakes. 
  2. Find hard work you love doing. 
  3. Invest time, energy and money in yourself every day. 
  4. Explore new ideas and opportunities often.
  5. When sharpening your career skills, focus more on less.
  6. People are not mind readers.  Tell them what you’re thinking.
  7. Make swift decisions and take immediate action.
  8. Accept and embrace change. 
  9. Don’t worry too much about what other people think about you. 
  10. Always be honest with yourself and others. 
  11. Talk to lots of people in college and early on in your career.
  12. Sit alone in silence for at least ten minutes every day.
  13. Ask lots of questions. 
  14. Exploit the resources you do have access to. 
  15. Live below your means.
  16. Be respectful of others and make them feel good.
  17. Excel at what you do. 
  18. Be who you were born to be. 
Above all, laugh when you can, apologize when you should, and let go of what you can’t change. Life is short, yet amazing.  Enjoy the ride.

Elaborative article on above topic can be found on marcandangel.com

Courtesy: marcandangel.com

Thursday, January 23, 2014

10 Most Important Things For A Healthy Relationship

1. LOVE:
The Special Feeling That Makes You Feel, All Warm And Wonderful.

2. RESPECT:
Treating Others As Well As You Would Like To Be Treated.

3. APPRECIATION:
To Be Grateful For All The Good Things Life Has To Offer.

4. HAPPINESS:
The Full Enjoyment of Each Moment, A Smiling Face.

5. FORGIVENESS:
The Ability To Let Things Be Without Anger.

6. SHARING:
The Joy Of Giving Without Thought Of Receiving.

7. HONESTY:
The Quality Of Always Telling The Truth.

8. INTEGRITY:
The Purity Of Doing What's Right, No Matter What.

9. COMPASSION:
The Essence of Feeling Another's Pain, While Easing Their Hurt.

10. TRUST and PEACE:
The Reward for Living the 10 Most Important Things

Source: Unknown

Monday, December 30, 2013

Why Nice Guys Don't Always Make It to the Top

Nice guys may not finish first, according to research coauthored by Nir Halevy of the Stanford Graduate School of Business. In fact, taking care of others in your group and even taking care of outsiders may reduce a nice guy's chance of becoming a leader.

STANFORD GRADUATE SCHOOL OF BUSINESS - Typically regarded as a common virtue, generosity can also be a sign of weakness for leaders, according to a new study.

The research finds that contributing to the public good influences a person's status on two critical dimensions: prestige and dominance.

"People with high prestige are often regarded as saints, possessing a self-sacrificial quality and strong moral standards," said Robert Livingston, assistant professor of management and organizations at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University. "However, while these individuals are willing to give their resources to the group, they are not perceived as tough leaders."

The researchers define dominance as an imposed alpha status whereas prestige is freely conferred admiration from others. Al Capone, for example, characterizes a high-dominance individual, whereas Mother Theresa represents a high-prestige individual.

The study argues that people with high prestige are perceived as desirable leaders in noncompetitive contexts; they are seen as submissive compared to individuals who strive to maximize their personal gains. In times of competition, individuals who are less altruistic are seen as dominant and more appealing as leaders.

"Our findings show that people want respectable and admired group members to lead them at times of peace, but when 'the going gets tough' they want a dominant, power-seeking individual to lead the group," said Nir Halevy, lead author and acting assistant professor of organizational behavior at the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Livingston and Halevy coauthored the research with Taya Cohen of Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business and PhD student Eileen Chou of Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. Their study highlights the need to distinguish between different types of status in groups, as well as how intergroup conflict shapes followers' leadership preferences.

"There are numerous academic findings on status but we sought to investigate the antecedents and consequences of two distinct forms of status, depending on the context," said Livingston.

To test their theory, the researchers conducted three experiments where participants were given the option to keep an initial endowment for themselves or contribute it to a group pool. Contributions either only benefited the contributor's fellow group members, or simultaneously benefited the contributor's group members and harmed the members of another group.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

10 Things Men Think About Women But Never Say

Between magazines, romantic comedies, and generally baseless cultural assumptions, women have long been guessing what men are really thinking. His feet are slanted towards you at a 15-degree angle? Then he’s in love. 30-degree angle? He wants nothing to do with you. In order to solve all that, take a look at the top things men think about women but seldom say:

1. Please order dessert
There are so many mind games that are hidden within a seemingly meaningless decision like ordering dessert. An “I’m full, none for me” after I just saw you push your salad around with your fork shows that the relationship is predicated on performance. Buying into the idea that you have to be a dainty feather isn’t sexy because it means you’re not comfortable with who you are or whom you are with. If the real you really has a stomach the size of a bird’s, then fine, but if not, then please skip the psychological jockeying and adherence to cultural norms, be the real you, and order up a brownie sundae. As with orgasms and suntans, fake isn’t sexy.

2. Make the first move (or at least give us the confidence to do it ourselves)
Even the manliest of dudes don’t like to face rejection and get their feelings hurt. We’re probably all for trying to pick you up, but give us a hint that we may have a shot before we dive in. If you’re not going to initiate an interaction then maybe open your body posture, touch us on the arm, or shoot us a warm smile — just give us an excuse, any excuse, to think we won’t be humiliated if we make a move, and we’ll be happy to strike up a conversation. We can see where things go from there, but there’s got to be somewhere to start.

3. No need to play a type
It’s normal to try to put on your best face in front of others, especially in the early stages of a relationship. But wearing a mask too often can make it impossible to take off, and the only way a relationship will last is if you are the real you. If you’re an aspiring screenwriter no need to act like you love photography or are fashion-obsessed. There’s nothing more attractive than a woman who creates her own type. A woman who’s one-of-a-kind.

4. You’re beautiful, stop complaining
We probably wouldn’t be with you if we thought you were unattractive. Men are immensely visual creatures, and,

Monday, December 2, 2013

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

What Love Isn’t

Love isn’t  being nice to everyone.
Love isn’t letting the world use you as a doormat.
Love doesn’t mean that everyone will like you.

Sometimes the greatest acts of love
cut to the deepest place,
and can change you forever.
And that’s ok.

Love isn’t ice cream on a cone,
or sweet flowers in a vase.
Love is a goodbye,
when hellos are holding you back
Or you suddenly hear your own lie.

Love is an ear,
when the mouth wants to move.
Love is seeing you,
without needing to see myself.

Love isn’t a complicated thing,
It’s all in the heart, 
Opening wide -
and suddenly expands…
Creating a new star.

Love is expansion
Holding within it’s own self
the possibility of everything.

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