The Hook-Up Culture

Hey guys! This week has been a busy, between working events and working in the office, it’s been super productive and fun. The events that I get to work are great and the moments shared with my co-workers are never dull!

so…

Lately, I’ve been reflecting on the four days I spent on tinder and the thing about the app is that it perpetuates a thing, known as the hook-up culture. Otherwise called ‘friends with benefits’, hook up culture is basically that. Two people who match on tinder (or any means of communication) and they meet up, have sex, do whatever and that’s it.

In fact, let’s consult with only the best dictionary for this word, shall we?

hook up urb

Again, since urban dictionary is a user-contributed website, this is the best definition its users have voted on… There was another definition for hook up, but that has nothing to do with the subject.

Okay, so I don’t know about you, but I am not a fan of Hook-up culture. I don’t even understand how that would even work, what these bullshit ‘rules’ are, or why anyone would want to be involved in one, in the first place, if no relationship can come out of it?

Hypothetically speaking, if I were in a friends with benefits kind of relationship, I don’t think I could do it. With the way that I’m wired, I’m too into my feelings

But in all seriousness, knowing me and the way my mind processes things, I don’t think it’d be as easy to detach my emotions from the whole experience.

If you’re in one or have been in one in a while, let me know your point of view on the matter, in the comments below!

With that being said, I’m not looking down on people who have that kind of relationship going on with one person or even multiple people. In fact, it’s more like a thing I don’t really understand. What do you call you and the other person? your fuck buddy? How do you know that the feelings aren’t anything more than just that?

I don’t understand why people start off being fuck buddies and then later on realize that they develop actual feelings for each other.

Or how sometimes a girl will engage in a hook-up because she’s head over heels in love with a guy who only views her as the side piece and nothing else. What happens then when the guy is literally using a girl for his own sexual needs, but not for emotional companionship.

I get it, hooking up with people is just an easier way of saying “YEAH I JUST GOT WITH x AMOUNT OF PEOPLE”, and it’s all the craze, especially after a break-up because-let’s face it- you’d rather have your tongue down someone’s throat than take a step back and figure out what it is you want out of the next relationship.

Hooking up seems like the better option if you aren’t ready for another relationship. Coming out of a relationship (more on that here),especially a long one, makes you feel like you aren’t ready to give someone your all. It’s not a heart broken feeling, but it’s akin to more of an open space.

I remember that’s how I felt when I came out of mine, I’m down to meet new people, but I can’t really bring myself to hook up or engage in anything with anyone, because I know how I’d feel. I don’t want to waste anyone’s time, I’d rather focus on my own damn self than on someone else, for the time being of course.

However, I don’t think hooking up with people is the “cure all” for breakups and heartbreak. If anything, I think using people, just to fill a void-that may take time (and only time itself) to heal-is just wrong and self-deprecating. I would never advise anyone to go out and have a grand old time with just anyone. If you’re my friend, I will tell you that you will find the person that you are looking for.

It may not be now. It may not even be tomorrow, but rest on the hope that there is someone out there for everyone. Life has a way of bringing in some of the most interesting people into your twenties, so learn from them and embrace the experiences with these new people.  Live your life and focus on yourself for a bit and see where that goes!

Call me old fashioned, but I’d rather wait for a long-lasting relationship, than be in a temporary fling that only lasts ten seconds minutes.

At the end of the day, it all boils down to you deciding whether or not you want the real thing or something close to it.

Sending a ton of Love and Light your way,

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What Is The Meaning of Happiness?

Hey all! I’ve been MIA for a bit, taking care of things, adulting, and everything else under the sun. Lately, I’ve been either reading, swiping left or right on tinder (I’ll explain later on in this post), or on Netflix for hours at a time. Through it all… I’ve been in a funk

That slump where you don’t feel like doing anything, where while you’re engaging in productivity, you kinda wish you were curled up, in your room reading, or doing anything but.

When I’m in a funk, there are times where I’ll ponder the meaning of a lot of things.

This time, I started thinking about happiness. More specifically:

  • What is it?
  • Why is it important?
  • What do we attribute it to?

Let’s look up the definition of ‘happiness’, shall we?

Def of happiness

Okay… Well that doesn’t give us much of a definition, but by the looks of it, it seems like the word is quickly getting phased out.

Why is it important that we are happy in our lives?

Being happy has been linked to lower stress levels and a sense of ease in one’s life. When you’re happy, like genuinely happy in your life, you have no time to focus on other pointless bullshit. You are busy working on yourself and building that happiness from within.

A lot of people, however attribute this happiness to money or another a person. And I’m just here to tell you the reasons why you shouldn’t attribute your happiness to these things

Money

The funny thing about money is that our moods change the moment that direct deposit hits.

We go from this

to this

Money is amazing, right? It’s the only thing that practically allows us to get anything we see a need or a want for, like clothes, make-up, the new iPhone, etc. However, does anyone remember the old adage “Money doesn’t buy you happiness”? Money can get you things to a certain point, but it can’t give you love, security or anything as abstract as the concept of happiness. You can’t even buy a personality with money or a new wife, HOW CRAZY IS THAT?

As a matter of fact, I’ve been watching this telenovela on Netflix called Sin Senos, No Hay Paraiso. Set in Pereira, Colombia, the show follows two teens and the poverty that surrounds them. Since the poverty rate in the area is so high, the teens decide to forfeit school and engage in some pretty lucrative stuff, in an act to get money, without the hard work.

Among the characters on the show, the teens’ mom explains that money isn’t everything in this world, that money isn’t meant to fix up every little issue that one has. Frankly, sometimes those problems, those deep rooted problems, can’t be remedied with insane amounts of money.

Another person

Relying on another person for your own happiness, is a definite no-no in my book. Yes, it’s nice that a person makes you happy, but they really shouldn’t be the boss of your own happiness. Like I said before, you should only be focusing on filling up your own cup of happiness. Let the other person be your overflow of happiness, not the consistency of it!

So I downloaded Tinder and with the help of one of my best friends, I was able to create a really good profile! In fact, here are some of the pictures I used:

and for my bio, I just put something short, sweet and to the point: Classy, never nasty, just a bit sassy✨.

The way that tinder works is that you have a set amount of guys in your area, you either swipe left- if you’re not interested- or swipe right, if you’re interested. On the first day, I received so many sweet messages, compliments, along with quite a few corny jokes. A good bit of the guys that I matched with (as in we both swiped right on each other), said the same line over and over: “Never nasty, huh?”

It was definitely an experience. Even though I lasted only four days on the app, I realized it wasn’t something for me. I think I’ve always known that and I just wanted to see what the app was all about, meet new people, all that jazz.

To be frank, I was not and am not looking for a relationship right now. I’m still working on myself. The fact that people actually look for relationships on tinder surprises me, because tinder isn’t built for that. It’s just built for people to meet, chat, and that’s it. This really opened my mind up to another area in the realm of dating and how easy it has become for people to meet, just by swiping right.

By the time I was hitting the fourth day, I noticed how drained I felt. Like this physical tiredness where all I ever did was just keep swiping, in hopes that I would get matched and have some sort of message sent my way. How unhealthy is that? How did I suddenly come to this conclusion?

It was then that I realized that If I was going to be physically and mentally drained from using a ‘dating’ app, why even bother using it? Why bother using or doing something if it doesn’t make me happy?

So I deleted my tinder because I realized that I could do without it and I’m going to be starting soon at a new school, where I’ll meet more cool people who share similar values and passions. Granted, I met some pretty cool people on tinder and may even stay in touch with a few, but as I’ve said before, it’s not something for me.

Before you do something, remember to ask yourself these 3 questions:

  • Are you going to be happy doing so?
  • Is it going to cause you a great deal of stress down the line?
  • Are you doing this for you or for another person?

The bottom line is: Happiness is being content with who you are. If you don’t feel happy with who you are, start by searching some ways that can bring you back to your happiest self.

Sending a ton of love and light your way,

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P.S follow my adventures on Instagram!

Entering The Single Life

Being single doesn’t have to be a bad thing.

In fact, it could prove to be a liberating experience for those who realize that there is more to see, other people to meet. What’s more, is I can honestly say that I respect someone who has left a relationship because they realized that they either

  • a. Wanted better for themselves- not necessarily a relationship
  • b. wanted to search for a better relationship or…
  • c. both

AND THAT’S COMPLETELY FINE

No one is telling you to marry the first person you meet, because things change, you change and it’s no one’s fault that both parties have changed. That is a fact of life.

Better yet, there is no problem at all in not wanting a relationship.  We are so conditioned to think that we need someone to validate our own insecurities and make us feel worthy.

Social media and societal norms have reinforced this idea that we need someone to be the reason behind our happiness, that we need someone to buy us gifts and shower us with compliments. I mean that’s great and all, but I’d rather be with someone who doesn’t just shower me with presents, I’d rather be with someone who I can have a conversation with and totally feel like I am being challenged to think about things in a different way.

I’d rather be happy with myself first, so that when it comes time to get into a relationship, I can be a happier person by just being me and contributing to the relationship.

So, recently I just came out of a pretty long relationship and ending it wasn’t an easy decision to make… (more on that here). But it was a decision, I made because I wanted to focus on me. At the end of the day, my health and well-being come first. If I see one aspect of my life that is causing me unnecessary stress and anxiety, I need to not only tell the difference, but I also have to take matters seriously and re-evaluate the situation.

One day, while I was scrolling through my phone, I found an article that was definitely worth saving and it’s from Psychology Today titled, “4 Reasons Not to Settle in a Relationship” by Juliana Breines Ph.D.  In this insightful article, it talks about how settling into any relationship may be an option, but it’s not necessarily the best option. Breines states that, ” From our earliest days, we learn that our worth is tied up in our ability to find a mate, that marriage marks the passage into mature adulthood and is our most important adult relationship and that we are not complete until we find our other half”.

We think that finding a mate is what’ll solve all our problems in our lives. Solidifying and securing that worth in the sense that we have someone who can prove that we are worthy of love, is low-key like being in a bit of a toxic relationship. Are you looking to have this person be one to secure your insecurities? If you are, then that is not okay. You are only further perpetuating the fact that instead of relying on your own opinions and beliefs of yourself, you’re relying on another person to be the one to supply you with that kind of emotional stability.

Relying on another person for your happiness and emotional stability is waay too much pressure to put on someone. It’s almost as if you want the hard part of the relationship to be dealt with by the other party. Relationships are a two-way street and what works best is working on becoming a better you, so that you can learn to love your significant other better.

The article then starts listing 4 science backed reasons as to why , you should consider holding out for a relationship that makes you truly happy.

  1. Fear of being alone can skew your priorities. 

A recent set of studies found that people who were afraid of being single were more likely to place more importance in being in a relationship as opposed to the quality of the relationship.

WHAT IS WRONG WITH BEING SINGLE? If a relationship doesn’t work out, you can say that you gave it your all and make the choice to move on.

2. Being single has its benefits

Just because you’re single and looking, doesn’t mean that you’re immature or “picky”. In fact, being single and not settling for a relationship (for whatever reason) means you’re willing to look further for someone who will treat you right and share all the qualities you look for in a person.

Breines states that “In reality, however, single people may be less self-centered and more giving than married and cohabitating couples: studies show that they are more likely to help out friends, family members and ailing parents”

Better yet, there are so many upsides to being single. For the first time, in a while, you’re independent, you can go out and not worry at all about texting ‘bae’. You can focus on yourself and on living life the way you want (within reason, of course).

As a twenty-something, I’m actually thankful that I am single because now I have time to:

  • focus on me,
  • to focus on transitioning to my new school,
  • to build meaningful relationships with the people I hold near and dear to my heart,
  • to form new friendships and network with potential employers.

I am so so so ready for that.

“If you feel satisfied in your life independent of your partner, you may be less likely to have the unrealistic expectation that your partner can and should meet all your needs”- Having that expectation, is known to make a relationship crumble over time. Like I said before, this is the reason why you cannot place all importance and emphasis on someone to make you feel whole or complete.

You need to do that yourself.

3. The possibility of finding true love may be worth the risk of not finding it.

Settling would be our safest bet, but holding out is a gamble. Why do we see it this way?

Psychologists, Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky have famously demonstrated that we are not always rational. We have our biases. The article then goes on to say that “loss aversion describes our tendency to be more sensitive to losses than gains, even if the amount is the same”

It’s this bias that makes us think ‘well, if I’m in a relationship and it’s kinda meh, I’d rather settle for the person, than go through the trouble of starting over and meeting someone new”

See what I mean?

Think about it this way, settling for an unfulfilling relationship is like signing up for an event, but not feeling or doing your best to help make the event flow smoothly.

4. Accepting a Person’s Flaws does not mean having to settle for them

Just because men and women have their flaws, it doesn’t mean that they are incapable of being loved. I mean, we are human, right? Every human has their own shortcomings and rather than picking apart somebody’s pros and cons,  we need to look at the big picture.

It’s important to ask yourself these 3 questions: Do they treat you right? do they share your values ? and Do you think the relationship feels right?

If you feel that you are in a fulfilling relationship with anyone, then that is all that should matter. Not the flaws.

Well that’s all I have for today! Staying single is quite possibly the most liberating experience ever, it gets hard at times, but we have to be open to the idea of being single, the idea of it being an empowering tool to help you learn about yourself, what makes you happy, and how you’re willing to contribute to a relationship when the time comes.

Stay strong, my friends!

Sending love and light your way

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Source:  Psychology Today Article

P.S: follow me on Instagram!

My Big Fat Colombian Family

My heritage is a huge part of who I am and I’m honestly so amazed by it. The whole passion for a culture like a hispanic culture is different and it varies by family and of course, by culture. Mainly, cultures have the tendency to either be individualistic or collectivistic. Allow me to give you a quick crash course in intercultural communication…

Individualistic cultures are me-me cultures. “get yourself up by your own bootstrap” type of cultures. It’s very independent, very self-driven, and that’s not to be confused with being selfish, but it’s a different approach to community-life. The idea is that you feel more of a motivation in and of yourself to go further and get ahead.

Collectivistic cultures are a we-we culture. The people of these cultures mainly respond with “what can we do to help you”, “what do we do”, “we can get through this together”. It’s a really beautiful thing and you’ll know and feel a collective culture when you’re in one. The people are super sweet and are almost always willing to help someone out in need, you feel a sense of community, in that regards.

So, for those of you who don’t know…  I’m Colombian. Well, my family is. Straight off the plane, utterly and completely COLOMBIAN. 

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…And that’s not even all of them.

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Being a part of the Colombian culture, means that it is highly collectivistic. For the most part, my family are very welcoming people. I’m sure it can be said about a lot of hispanic families, but when you’re around mine, you feel like you’re a part of something great. It’s never a dull moment with them.  Every time I get off the plane, there’s always a select few of my family members who come to pick me up and seeing their faces light up, is the reason why I go back, every.damn.time. There’s always food waiting at home and even more people to see.

Another reason as to why I go back is because of how pretty it is… We’re from the coast, more specifically, Cartagena of the Indies.

Image result for cartagena

Image result for cartagena at night

There’s so many things to do in the city and believe me,  it is so easy to get lost in the city. But I guess that’s how you learn about a new country or city that you visit, right? How can you not get lost in a city that has so much history and beauty??

The city and country itself is as beautiful as its people. The people here are some of the sweetest people you will ever meet. With such ease, they are willing to accept someone as part of the family or group. When they say ‘hi’ they approach one with a hug and kiss on the cheek.

As I have said before: us, Colombians, are very family-oriented. I am not kidding! Many people have such a love for their families, that often times, in midst of all their successes or lack thereof, they’re always thankful for their family, because  of the pride they have for their family over successes/ material things.

I mean it’s great if you have boat loads of money or loads of success, but what’s even better is the support you have from the family. Here, family is always there for you to help you up, be that shoulder to lean on, and always around for a great time out. To many people, Family is everything.

In fact, when you ask colombians (or anyone of hispanic descent) about their immediate family, they don’t just talk about their parents and any siblings they have, they literally talk about their whole family. Hell, even when people ask me about my family, I go on and talk about all the fun memories I have had with some of them, both here in the states and over in Cartagena. Needless to say, the bond in my family is so strong that we have our own massive group chat on WhatsApp!

But overall, I’m so thankful for the united family I have, they have set down the foundation for my heritage, the way I should carry myself, among so many other things. My family is my motivation. I want to be a better person for not just myself, but for my family.

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Blood is thicker than water and my family has helped me through so much, that being my little rough patch with depression and anxiety. They helped me get the help I needed and still continue to motivate me everyday.

Even with miles and miles between us, I know that we will always remain united at heart.

Sending tons and tons of love and light your way,

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The Growth Mindset

Bear with me a bit guys, it’s been a while since I blogged! Before I begin, I’d like to ask a question…

So has anyone been at a crossroads with a relationship? Or maybe you decided that you needed to make a decision that would work best for you.

In any case, if any of you has gone through something like this, you know that making a decision isn’t always the easiest thing to do… especially when it involves making changes to your life.

Well, shit, life is full of difficult decisions. Sometimes, these decisions are so difficult that you have to realize what would work best for your life going forward, all in a short amount of time.

For the first time in my life, I’ve had to decide what I needed, in the long run and that proved to be difficult, because it meant deciding what was important to me: my well-being or staying in a relationship with a significant other. All in a matter of 72 hours.

I realize that there were many factors that ultimately led up to the break-up; one of them simply being that we have grown apart. In life, we are often caught by surprise when we realize that what we once wanted, like a career or personality traits in a person, isn’t what we want anymore. We go in different directions, because whether you like it or not, we are constantly changing.

We are not the same people we were a few days ago.

We’re not even the same people we were a week ago.

Growing apart doesn’t always have to be a bad thing. The way I see it is, growing apart gives you the opportunity to grow as an individual. It’s life’s way of giving you a chance to find out what you like, what you look for in a person, and what you want your next relationship to consist of, etc.

Another thing that contributed to this was that I was face-to-face with a situation that, quite frankly could’ve been avoided, made me realize that I had to make a decision (yes, the same decisions as mentioned above).

After careful thought and advice from some of my best friends, I chose me. I chose my well-being, the desire to become a better person for my family, and for myself.

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Within those 72 hours, I gained so much clarity about the relationship I was in and realized that we want different things.

 

Originally, this post was going to be fueled with anger and empowerment, but this was all before I had a chance to even talk with the person. By the time we talked about it, I finally got a chance to understand why the relationship didn’t work out, what could’ve been better, what we noticed in each other, how the relationship went, etc. It was actually a liberating experience because I never really had that. I’ve always had break-ups end in misunderstanding and hate… all for no real reasons.

If you didn’t know, I’m a communications major and for me, it’s very important to see what another person’s point of view is. Communication is all about listening. It is an essential component in all relationships and I think that if we spent more time talking face-to-face, we would eliminate a misunderstanding (more on that here). Through learning and seeing where each other was coming from, this proved to be one of the most polite break-ups I have ever had.

A part of growing up is deciding who can stay in your life. Part of what choosing myself entails is that my happiness and well-being need to come first.

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After a break up, I get that it is hard to stay strong, no matter how good of a relationship it was, and it is hard to find some motivation to practice some self-love habits. I’ve been taught to get up and dust myself off after a relationship has ended.

My word of advice: don’t ever stop taking care of yourself, don’t quit going to the gym. Allow yourself to feel what you’re feeling, but just keep in mind that you’re still the shit and realize that things happen for a reason!

Along with self-love, I needed to be okay with losing this person. I get that there are some people who can be friends with their exes and that’s great for those people, but that isn’t me.

I can’t stay friends with my exes. Trust me, I’ve tried.

I saw that if I wanted to move on, I can’t really be in correspondence with the person. In the best interest for myself, I can’t do it or else it gets too messy.

I want to be with someone who is willing to take me out to different places, every weekend. I want someone who is consistent, always keeps me on my toes. I want someone who is open to learning about a new culture. I want someone who surprises me, because I love surprises. Someone who challenges me, whether it be intellectually or whatever, I want someone who is encouraging in the most positive way possible. I want someone who shares my values, goals, someone who respects me and above all is accepting of how absolutely crazy I am.

With all that being said, I am in no rush to get into a relationship. For the time being, I’m going to focus on myself, learn about myself and stay off Tinder. When I start up at my new university, it’ll be a completely different experience and will be one that I can immerse myself in.

The way I look at is, it’s a beginning. A new chapter in my life. I’m only 21 and this gives me time to meet other people, and I’m totally on board with that.

Sending love and light your way,

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P.S Follow my Instagram for more uplifting posts!

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