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Workplace romance is becoming a little vintage, it would seem. Except less fashionable.

the office GIF

Just one-in-10 couples (11 percent) are now finding love in the workplace, according to a new report.

Nearly one-in-five romances in 1990 were forged at work, in comparison. Back in the day, things were clearly done differently.

They were also times when people stayed at the same job their entire lives though, and most likely met less people, seeing as travel options were less extensive.

The research was published in the latest 'How Couples Meet and Stay Together Study' from Stanford University.

Nichi Hodgson, author of The Curious History of Dating: From Jane Austen to Tinder, in an interview with Yahoo UK claims that striking up a relationship with a colleague is now “less sociably acceptable”.

Despite the fact that we're spending longer hours in the workplace, we are now more cautious than ever about a co-worker relationship turning into something romantic, according to Hodgson, due to the #MeToo movement.

The movement aims to tackle workplace sexual harassment and assault, and has been building since Tarana Burke started it back in 2006. It caught fire in 2017 after the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke.

Nichi Hodgeson claims that "workplace relationships need to be conducted very carefully to ensure there's no breach of company behavioural guidelines." I mean, it ain't that hard not to be a creep.

Hodgson also argues that we shouldn’t necessarily be disappointed by the end of the workplace romance:

“They don't necessarily show you someone's true colours – you won't see how tender or angry someone can be at work, for example, because the majority of people are on their best behaviour,” she says.

“Just because they're a good team player at work doesn't mean they necessarily will be in a relationship.”

season 2 flirting GIF by Blunt Talk

Online dating and apps like Tinder, Bumble, Hinge and OK Cupid are now taking the lead in bringing people together, with almost one-in-four (39 percent) of heterosexual couples meeting through those platforms.

This is an increase since 2009, when the stats showed 22 percent of hetero couples meeting online, according to the Stanford University findings.

Meeting through friends is still a popular means of finding your future partner, but it's much less common than it was in the past. Over a third (34 percent) of people met this way in 1990, but it’s now just one in five (20 percent)

“Dating apps may have only been around for a decade but they have a radical hold on our affections when it comes to meeting a partner, mainly because they are so convenient in our ever time-pressed lives,” Hodgson says.

the boss kiss GIF by Kim's Convenience

“They're not necessarily leading to better connections though for multiple reasons – they create a paradox of choice, giving us too many people to choose between when social scientists tell us we get cognitive overload somewhere between five and nine options," she continues.

“Dating apps are encouraging us to be ruder with behaviours,” Hodgson adds, which is due to a “lack of accountability needed from users”. Overall, Hodgson believes that dating apps can still lead to a stable, long-term match. 

“When we do finally choose a serious partner from a dating app, we are likely to stick with them – we are taking longer to settle on someone but that is producing more stable long-term matches when we finally commit.”

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What does it mean to be an ‘empowered woman’ in 2019?

The phrase ‘empowered woman’ is intrinsically loaded with underlying meaning and misunderstood perceptions. When many of us hear the phrase, most people envision a sexually-promiscuous woman who refuses to have children and most likely drinks scotch.

Arguably, its meaning has dramatically changed in the last year, ever since actress Alyssa Milano’s ‘Me Too’ tweet went viral.

2018 has not been the easiest of times for Irish women.

Watching the news everyday has been a tortuous experience, with violence against women splashed across every publication, the media raining debilitating double standards upon anyone remotely famous and the paparazzi splashing unflattering female body images across the internet.

Two massively painful rape trials have illuminated the imperative need for changes in the Irish law regarding sexual violence and assault, and the horrific way in which women are treated and cross-examined in the courtroom.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The Repeal movement was draining for everyone involved, the right to bodily autonomy is still undeniably under threat.

It’s worth noting that standards are changing all around us, lines are being drawn, boundaries are being set. Finally, I might add.

Women are always hyper-aware of the need for self-protection, especially when it comes to sex and dating.

We’ve all held our keys in between our knuckles as we walk down a dimly-lit road at night, we’ve all experienced unwanted attention on nights out, and we’ve all worried about what we wear, and the negative consequences our clothes could potentially bring.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Standards of relationships are changing in conjunction, as women entering the dating world have new questions which they are asking of potential lovers.

This also stands for workplace relationships, women are fighting back against pay inequality and sexism which are prevalent even in first-world countries such as Ireland and the UK.

Watching Little Mix and Ariana Grande fight back against Piers Morgan's recent sexist comments has been such a breath of fresh air.

The #MeToo and TimesUp movements have been eye-opening experiences for men, women and intersex people worldwide, with every facet of society examining its own behaviour with a new lens.

Unlike most men, women are expected to be looking for love around every corner.

During our teens and 20s, being single is depicted as a hugely empowering, freeing experience, yet a shadow dawns on the eve of our 30th birthdays: the misogynistic view that our biological clocks are ticking, and where on earth is our husband?

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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I have learnt many things from relationships, mainly that learning who you are can often only become a reality when you face tough aspects of life alone.

This is not true for everyone, of course, but many women in this day and age have to shrug off countless societal pressures and notions which are veiled in misogyny and shame.

Female empowerment in this article can only be relevant to my personal experiences, women are extremely complex beings and each feels empowered in totally different ways.

For women with disabilities, of different ages, gender binaries, classes and ethnicities, feeling good about ourselves comes in all shapes and forms.

Sex is power, #MeToo has taught me that. I cannot speak for other women, especially those in the LGBT+ community, but as a heterosexual woman, I have also learned many other hard lessons about the need to empower myself and have control over my body and mind.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Women are not therapists, we cannot be expected to handle the emotional baggage of other people.

We have enough of our own. Watching Ariana get blamed for Mac Miller's death is a primary example of the degradation placed on people for leaving toxic relationships.

 Ariana Grande has entered ultimate female empowerment mode, sporting a friendship ring instead of her recent engagement rock, and regularly posting images of classic film stars and female icon moments on her Instagram account.

Her new music video will be a tribute to classic movies with female leads such as 13 Going On 30, Mean Girls, Bring It On and Legally Blonde.

Thank u, next; Ari’s latest phenomenally successful single, pays homage to her past loves before declaring that her relationship with herself is now a priority.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Reports claim that her ex-fiancé, Pete Davidson, did not support her sufficiently following the death of Mac Miller, her former love.

Ariana explained how toxic her relationship with Miller was; she endured the pain of watching someone they love struggle through addiction but realised that it was expected of her to ‘fix’ his pain, to mother him through his issues.

Her realisation that she could not carry out this burden was imperative.

When Davidson joked about swapping Grande’s birth control pills on Saturday Night Live, the reaction was mixed.

Many wondered why controversy erupted over the comment, yet many reflected on the notion of literally trapping a woman into staying with you through pregnancy, a huge emotional and physical ordeal for women.

Realise that we are not defined by our relationship status, and to have a relationship with yourself can be an incredibly growth experience.

Letting go of the pressure to always have an ‘other half’ can be freeing in itself. Don’t underestimate the value of your friendships, especially female ones.

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SEX is empowering:

Learning what you like (this applies to anyone with a sexual partner- in a relationship or not) is CRUCIAL.

Women have always been expected to satisfy men in terms of sex, the language was never granted to us regarding how to communicate our desires, and how to find pleasure.

Consent in this country has always been a murky topic, hidden under the surface.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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I never heard the word mentioned until I went to college, and by the time I learnt the word’s true meaning, I had already had unconsensual experiences without truly understanding them at all.

Educating ourselves about consent, and only having relationships with those who truly respect us and our bodies can be incredibly empowering.

Learn how to say no, be selfish.

Women cannot be expected to please everyone, all the time. Often we have to work incredibly hard, in our employment or relationships, to get the achievements we deserve.

Learning to put yourself first can be a massive way of respecting our own mental health and practicing self-love and acceptance.

Ask yourself, what do YOU want, instead of what does everyone else want of you.

bossy beyonce GIF

Learning new skills

Self -defence classes, a new language, a skill such as website building, graphic design, even calligraphy. Why not?

If you have valuable assets such as the ability to drive, and even do nitpicky jobs such as online banking or tax can be empowering in terms of releasing yourself from co-dependence.

why do you need to do this sandra bullock GIF by Ocean's 8

Don’t let opportunities pass you by.

Go with your instincts. Do what you’ve always wanted to do, but always found an excuse never to do it. You miss 100% of the chances you let pass by, and you never know how much you can gain from letting your fears dissipate and challenging yourself.

Mental health

The importance of having a health mind can never be underestimated. Take personal time whenever you know that you need it, don't succumb to pressure. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Body confidence

Society makes it so damn hard to allow you to feel secure in your own skin. In a world with such fascination with image and beauty, loving yourself is a completely rebellious act.

Beyonce Satisfying GIF

Everyone is unique, so don’t try to fit a beauty mould which will undoubtedly change in the next five to ten years.

In the 90s it was bone glamour with malnourished models such as Kate Moss on the runway looking like all they needed most was a McDonalds, and now the Kardashians have transformed cosmetic beauty into plastic surgery-induced curves, glossy brunette hair and big lips and bums.

Who knows what the next big trend will be, but why force yourself to look like someone else? You are worth so much more than what you weigh or what you see in the mirror.

Taking control of your love life

The laws of dating have transformed recently, with apps such as Bumble finally realising that women don’t always want to wait around for the right person to ask them on a date.

unbothered michelle obama GIF by Obama

Try asking someone out, the worst that can happen is that they say no.

Food and health

I lived in San Francisco for four months and had the most atrocious diet, and when I came home I vowed to learn at least ten easy home-cook meals that are quick to make, and have health benefits. Having independence in terms of your body and health can be crucial to an empowering mindset, especially for women with chronic health problems.

Career

serena williams tennis GIF

Finding career success can be a huge morale boost, especially for women. Success shouldn’t be based on how much you earn, but how much you love your job and how you contribute to bringing a positive energy to the world around you.

Fight to be heard at the table, realise how intelligent you are and how you should be valued in your workplace. Don’t let anyone invalidate you.

You have the key to your own happiness, no one else.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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To be totally independent, ‘empowered’ single gal has countless benefits. Find your own definition of ‘empowerment’, some women are empowered by their style, their job, their relationship, their sex life, and others are empowered simply by being happy in their own skin.

Whether you're feeling great and powerful totally covered up or completely naked, do whatever makes you happy.

we did it mic drop GIF by U.S. Soccer Federation

As Ru Paul the Great regularly claims, “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love somebody else?”

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Unless you're extremely lucky, it's highly unlikely you gel with every single person in your workplace.

While you may not be able to articulate why you tend to give certain people a wide berth, you just know that they're simply not your type of person.

But if you harbour suspicions that they're raving psychopaths and would give anything to find evidence of this, you need look no further than two recent studies published in Journal Of Business Ethics.

According to the research, you can spot the psychopath in your office by taking note of the relationship they have with their boss.

If the boss in question is particularly difficult to work for and yet your colleague appears to thrive under their management approach, then you may – put simply – have a psycho on your hands.

So, how did researchers set about isolating the psychopaths among us?

419 volunteers firstly had their reactions measured when presented with manager profiles before being asked to assess their own real-life managers.

The study identified two types of psychopathy; primary dimension and secondary dimension, and ascertained that those who appeared to thrive beneath a problematic manager displayed signs of the former.

Elaborating on the findings, Dr Charlice Hurst said: "Both consist of high levels of antisocial behaviour; however, people who score high in primary psychopathy lack empathy and are cool-headed and fearless."

"They don’t react to things that cause other people to feel stressed, fearful or angry. Secondary psychopaths are more hot-headed and impulsive."

Unlike other people who would struggle under the direction of a problematic manager, primary psychopaths benefit under abusive supervisors.

"Relative to their peers low in primary psychopathy, they felt less anger and more engagement and positive emotions under abusive supervisors," Dr Hurst continued.

So, now you know…

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Worrying new research has shone a light on the way employers view men and women in the workplace.

According to a YouGov survey for the Young Women’s Trust, bosses are up to five times more likely to lable their male employees as ambitious, when compared to their female counterparts.

Confused? Offended? Downright appalled? – Us too.

But it gets worse.

For the study, 800 employees with human resources decision- responsibilities were asked a series of questions about the gender differences in the workplace.

Results revealed that men were perceived as the confident of the sexes, while women were said to be more “conscientious” at work.

As well as that, one-in-three participants said they believed sexism exists in their workplace while one-in-eight admitted that they knew of sexual harassment that had gone unreported.

And as if all this wasn't bad enough, one-in-10 revealed they were aware of a gender pay gap at their company.

While none of these findings have us jumping for joy, we're calling BS on the ambitious thing – and we're not the only ones.

“Young women do not lack ambition but too often they are held back by employers who – knowingly or not – discriminate against them,” said Dr Carole Easton OBE, chief executive at Young Women’s Trust.

“It’s no wonder women are held back in the workplace when those making hiring decisions have such outdated views,” she added.

“It is employers and our economy that miss out on the talents of young women as a result. Young women who want to work are meanwhile struggling to make ends meet and finding themselves in debt.

“We need urgent action to improve young women’s prospects and give them hope for the future.”

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Wearing high heels to work should never be a prerequisite. We'll keep our work uniform of boots and a breton top, thank you very much. 

However for some women, the inclusion of high heels in their work dress code is a reality. 

Obviously, this makes daily blisters, aching arches and strained calves a regular part of working life. 

 

Calls were made to the UK government back in April to ban the requirement from women's work contracts, but these were rejected. 

One woman who was sent home from work for wearing flat shoes started a petition to have the requirement disbanded, sparking global media attention. 

In 2011, Theresa May even said: 'I have not found that traditional gender-based workplace dress codes have held me back.'

'I indeed believe that they encourage a sense of professionalism in the workplace.'

The University of Aberdeen has conducted further research into the area, and found that there is a risk of injury attached to the persistent wearing of heels. 

The review found that wearing high heels led to an increased risk of bunions, pain and injury.

It failed to find a link between high heel wear and osteoarthritis.

'From our review it is clear that despite the huge amount of evidence showing heels are bad for individuals’ health, there are complex social and cultural reasons that make high heel wearing attractive,' said lead researcher Dr Max Barnish, according to Breaking News.

“We feel the UK Government should follow the lead of other authorities who have introduced specific laws to tackle this practice rather than simply relying on existing legislation which has left the situation in this country uncertain and open to misinterpretation.'

We'll be keeping our runners firmly on our feet, thanks. 

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The pressures associated with today's career-driven society means your mental health can suffer, and caring for it can take a backseat as you attempt to make strides in your chosen field.

A recent study by the Institute of Directors found that only 14 per cent of businesses have a policy in place to help an employee who is suffering with mental health issues.

And to further that, staff using sick days for their mental health has risen by 25 percent over the past number of years.

Image result for stressed in work

Work can be hella stressful, and even the best of us can be brought down by deadlines, bad reports, or simply, just a few bad days.

So, to help you when you're feeling a bit down, here are five steps to take to boost your mood and not let work get the better of you:

1. Take notes

Keep a work notebook and write down the various situations and tasks that make you feel the most stressed or give you anxiety. 

Recording your thoughts and seeing them on paper can be great for clearing your mind, and combating whatever issues you may have.

 

2. Create boundaries

With today's technology, it can seem like you're on the go 24/7. Even if a work email arrives in your inbox at 9pm, most people feel inclined to reply.

Establish some boundaries for yourself and make sure you switch off by a certain time each day. Relax your mind and forget about work.

 

3. Recharge

While a lot of Irish businesses don't have mental health guidelines in place, there's no issue with using your holiday days.

Plan to do some of your favourite activities on those days, and don't even think about work. By letting yourself recharge, you'll be more relaxed when stepping back into the workplace.

 

4. Have an open conversation

If work is really getting you down and you feel like it's making a negative impact on your mental health, talking to your boss/supervisor could be very beneficial.

Have an honest conversation about how your feeling, and clarify what might make things better. It might be scary to open up, but a weight will be lifted off your shoulders when you do.

 

5. Speak to a professional

If you feel like your mental health is on a downward spiral, help yourself by talking to a professional.

There are numerous websites, call lines and counselling services here in Ireland that can help you with any issues you might have.

You can check out Mental Health Ireland for a list of services or visit Grow to look at resources in your area.

Image result for counselling services

Remember, you are more important.

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Going to work with a hangover is one of life's punishments for having so much damn fun. However, we know exactly how to outsmart that pesky headache: 

1. Have A Shower
Showers always make you feel better, but on days when you’ve been out drinking the night before, they have the added benefit of getting rid of the smell of alcohol from your skin. This is assuming you get up in time to have a shower before you leave, which we understand is an incredibly difficult task to accomplish during a hangover.

shower

2. Eat Some Breakfast
Hard and all as it might be to stomach food at this hour, try and get something into you, even if it’s just half a granola bar or something. You’ll need fuel for the day and this will help get you to lunch.

breakfast

3. Brush Your Teeth
Similar to the shower, it gets rid of that disgusting aftertaste of whatever you were drinking last night. People you talk to throughout the day will also thank you.

brush

4. Drink Loads Of Water
When you drink alcohol, your body gets really dehydrated, and your brain actually shrinks as a result. Then the next day, headaches result from your brain going back to its normal size. So the more water you drink, the faster this can happen and the quicker the headaches will go away. How quickly depends entirely on just how much you had to drink the night before.

water

 

5. Eat Fruit
Fruit has got loads of natural sugars that can provide energy to get you through the day, and they are petty easy on the stomach as well. Bananas are probably the best because they provide potassium which is good if you’ve thrown up, and they also replace these things called electrolytes. Which is also good. Apparently.

banana

6. Tactical Naps In The Toilet Are Key
The lack of sleep means that a nap might be in order, and the bathroom is probably the best place for it. Because you can lock the door, it makes it impossible for your boss or anyone else to walk in on you and catch you out.

asleep

7. Keep Your Head Down And Don’t Move Too Quickly
We're talking about keeping your head down as in avoiding your boss, or getting any complicated jobs. We don’t mean to actually keep your head down and rest it on the nearest available surface. If you need a nap, you know where the toilet is.

hungover-working

8. Go For A Walk
Fresh can really clear the head, so if you get the chance on your break or during lunch, get out of the building and just go for a wander. You’re not doing it for exercise so just take it as slow as you need to.

zombies

9.  Get A Ridiculously Greasy Lunch
You’ve already eaten the healthy fruit, so you’ve earned the greasy lunch. It’s not quite as satisfying as the take-away you had at 4am last night, but it’s still pretty good.

food

via our content partner CT

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