Lilac wants to date a “little puppy,” because, as she puts it, he would be “the exact opposite of the guys around me, including my boyfriend.”
The 25-year-old, who works at a Shanghai-based online publication and only wants to be identified by her English name, said that her boyfriend doesn’t compliment her enough on her looks. A little puppy, on the other hand, would always know to tell her, “You are the best.” After their latest argument, the two decided to take a break from their year-long relationship.
In China, “little puppy,” or 小奶狗 (xiǎo nǎigǒu), refers to a man who is younger than his girlfriend, whose qualities in the eyes of his lover include being simple, naive, considerate, and caring—and most importantly, loyal and clingy, just like a pet. The rise of little puppies as an ideal type of boyfriend points toward a shift in popular culture in the country, where young women are increasingly defying traditional attitudes toward romance.
Why does compassion lead to health benefits in particular?
A clue to this question rests in a fascinating new study by Steve Cole at the University of California, Los Angeles, and APS Fellow Barbara Fredrickson at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The results were reported at Stanford Medical School’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education’s (CCARE) inaugural Science of Compassion conference in 2012. Their study evaluated the levels of cellular inflammation in people who describe themselves as “very happy.” Inflammation is at the root of cancer and other diseases and is generally high in people who live under a lot of stress. We might expect that inflammation would be lower for people with higher levels of happiness. Cole and Fredrickson found that this was only the case for certain “very happy” people. They found that people who were happy because they lived the “good life” (sometimes also know as “hedonic happiness”) had high inflammation levels but that, on the other hand, people who were happy because they lived a life of purpose or meaning (sometimes also known as “eudaimonic happiness”) had low inflammation levels. A life of meaning and purpose is one focused less on satisfying oneself and more on others. It is a life rich in compassion, altruism, and greater meaning.
Emma M. Seppala, Ph.D. | Psychology Today
Watching the heron
It might sound hard to pay attention to your sensations, and to be aware of your thoughts and taking responsibility for everything that happen to you. But in this dynamic life when everything keeps changing, and nothing is fixed — it’s much harder not to.
Life is designed to be amazing. The purpose of life, according to the Dalai Lama is to be happy – to find and live what moves us, inspires us and stirs our souls.
“What if the purpose of love isn’t getting people into relationships, but out of them?” asked Konner, author of more than a half-dozen books on human nature. Think about it, he urged. Love makes us irrational. And what’s more irrational (in a universe in which there are surely more bad possibilities than good ones) than leaving the safety of an existing relationship?