COM0014 – Blog #2 – Storytelling & Communication Styles

Image from The Writing Cooperative

The art of storytelling has been evolving since the dawn of time. It was used to share stories of essential news and ideas or simply for entertainment. Storytelling has been growing and evolving from drawings on cave walls to blogs and social media posts and it will keep evolving as technology changes. Can you image how storytelling will be used in ten years? What I’ve learned reading about communication styles and there are three main components to a good story. The first being the lead, then the body and lastly, the tail.

These three components break up a story and create a hierarchy of information. The lead would be the most critical information that a reader would need to understand what is going on. The body would include details the story, such as the background information that develops the story. The tail may not seem important; however, it can tie a story with additional details and increase the engagement of the reader.

While the three elements help develop a story, we must account for communication style to transform a story. It has been determined that the average adult’s attention span has “dropped from 12 seconds to 8” (MacMillan “Do I have your attention?”, 2019). You must gain someone’s trust, while also engaging someone’s full attention quickly.  Some ways of enticing the readers attention would be to use an active voice, while also ensuring of proper grammar and punctuation. This will only increase trust and authority.

Communication style can vary depending on your audience, therefore one must establish a target audience then proceed with a communication strategy. As previously mentioned, storytelling is an art form which means ‘practice makes perfect’. Breaking down your story using the inverted pyramid, establishing a communication style and learning to target your audience, will help keep your readers engaged and coming back for more.

References:

MacMillan, Doug. “Do I Have Your Attention?” Mechanical Business, Apr. 2019, pp. 70–71.

COM0011 Blog #1 – The dangers of dating apps on relationships and mental health

Social media and relationships now overlap in more ways then it ever did before. People got busier and phones became smarter. Meeting people the old-fashion way was just that: old-fashion. Developers took it upon themselves to ensure that humans were still connecting, but in a more efficient way. Enter the dating apps. You are bombarded with multiple options in partners every second of the day and all you must do is swipe. The lines we’ve heard like “never settle”, “there are plenty of fish in the sea” and “you’ve got to kiss a bunch of toads before you find a prince”, have never been more accurate. These apps have pushed that ideology, causing a strain on relationships and mental health issues.  

Image found on CNET  

Dating apps and mental health

Mental health plays a large role in healthy and stable relationships. When one partner (or both) are suffering, a relationship can hit a rocky road. This stems from confidence and trust, which are huge components of a relationships and when they are tested, they cause a divide. When we are bombarded daily with constant images of specific body types, sexy clothing and lavish lifestyles, our personal value and self-worth are compromised because we are constantly comparing. It is not only self-esteem that affects our overall mental health, but also toxic emotions like jealousy, which are becoming increasingly common within relationships. The revolving catalogue of partners can keep people from fully committing and questioning whether their partner can commit. The toxicity of dating apps are bargaining with one’s mental health, as the dating game got a lot trickier to navigate.

Relationships and social media

If we take a step back away from mental health, we can see that the increasing number of relationships cause overstimulation and an addiction.  Overstimulation can inhibit a relationship of developing because one cannot invest the time into fostering the connection. When the time is not invested, it allows users to become less attached and therefore opening the door to a lack of understanding of human connection. Social media and digital devices have become a norm, while also instilling an addiction. We are fascinated with the efficiency of receiving news, gratification of receiving “likes” and being a part of everyone’s “moment”. While it has many positives to express our truth and our right to free speech, the lack of humanity we can feel addressing people through digital devices, has erased the concept of speaking to an actual human with feelings. Therefore, dating apps do not necessarily help blossom connections, but rather destroy them.  

Image result for social media and relationships"

Image by Study Breaks (via Pinterest)

Ways to prevent the diminishing in your relationships

There are lots of way to avoid the deterioration of a relationship to grow in a healthy manner. Consider trying to put your phone down and converse with your partner when you are alone. This will increase and make communication much easier This is also creating healthy boundaries that will only help strengthen and grow a relationship. Another rule to keep in mind is something most of us have been taught since we were young: treat people like how you want to be treated. A simple concept to keep in mind.

As technology keeps developing, our communication style and methods will evolve. Social media will continue to intertwine with our everyday lives, and soon become an extension of our true self. Relationships will constantly alter and adjust, but we must remind ourselves that a connection takes time and nurturing to develop. Try and be mindful of your own mental health and ensure to make yourslef a priority without compromising our relationships and humanity.

Facebook:

Are your relationships constantly hitting roadblocks? Dating apps are not necessarily the answer. Find out why taking time away from your phone to focus on “YOU” could help solve your relationship issues.

Twitter:

Cyber-Stalking? Ghosting? Micro-Cheating? Catfishing? Have you heard or been on the reciprocating end of any of them? Find out why here: bit.ly/2KtnMD

#socialmedia #relationships #datingapps #datinginthedigitalworld

COM0014 – Blog #1: Our first vacation

“A couple’s first vacation can be a predictor to see if you will make it as a couple”, is the line I was repeatedly told before we went to Portugal this year. My mom has a way with words. Well not only was the seven day trip amazing, but we survived without driving each other up a wall. Mission accomplished.

We decided on Portugal for our June vacation because of the weather, views, beaches and of course the wine. It was one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever visited. We started our trip in Lisbon, worked our way down to Lagos then back up to Lisbon again. It was a perfect balance between sightseeing and relaxing!

We took an overnight flight (not recommended) to Lisbon and decided to spend a day sightseeing before taking a four-hour train down to Lagos. Unfortunately, we didn’t get much sleep on the plane and ended up passing out for the entire afternoon. We did eventually make it out of the hotel and our first stop was to eat the infamous Portuguese custard tart. If you haven’t had one of these desserts, you are missing out! We proceeded to have at least two custard tarts a day and so you don’t have to do the math, that’s 14 custard tarts (I’m grossed out too).

Portuguese custard tarts
Image by Caroline Bexfield

If you ever make it to Portugal, Lagos is a must-see. I would’ve spent my entire trip in the little beach town. Although it was a tiny area, there were so many activities to choose from, that you could never get bored. Our four days in Lagos included a boat tour through the caves, a hike over the cliffs, walking through the markets and soaking up the sun on the beautiful beaches.

LAGOS CAVES
Image by Caroline Bexfield

The town of Lagos was packed with people of all ages and at night became a party-scene for the younger tourists. The small town had numerous amounts of restaurants and even more wine to taste. They took great pride in their food and wine, which definitely showed. By the last day, we were wine connoisseurs! The fourth day, we reluctantly got on the train back to Lisbon to continue our trip.

Lagos Beach
Image by Caroline Bexfield

After a long train ride to Lisbon, we made it to our downtown Airbnb apartment. I kid you not this place had five flights of stairs, which was not fun with heavy suitcases. On the plus side, we definitely worked off some custard tarts.

Lisbon was such a lively and colourful city! We decided we were going to take it day by day and not overdo it on the sightseeing. It was a smart decision on our part because we stumbled upon interesting pockets of the city that would’ve been missed. Our favourites spots that we visited in Lisbon were the São Jorge Castle, the Tower of Belem and the Palace of Pena

The castle is a must-see, and although doesn’t look like much from the outside, it gave us access to hands down the best city views of Lisbon.

São Jorge Castle view
Image by Caroline Bexfield

The Tower of Belem was initially built to defend the city, and now stands a beautiful monument. The best part of being in Belem, was the three-minute walk to an establishment that created the first ever custard tart and still use the exact same recipe from 1837. Lastly, our day in Sintra was well worth the day trip! Just walking around the most colourful palace I’ve ever seen, was like walking through a movie set. It just didn’t seem real!

Tower of Belem
Image by Caroline Bexfield

Overall, it was an excellent trip and a huge feat for the both of us! Mostly because the only argument we had was over who would get the last custard tart. He didn’t win that one.

Interested in taking a trip to Portugal? Check out some of the blogs I reviewed before booking my trip:

www.wandertooth.com/where-to-stay-in-lisbon-neighborhoods/

https://theblondeabroad.com/ultimate-portugal-travel-guide/

inbetweenpictures.com/blog/fun-things-to-do-in-lagos-portugal-algarve-region