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Can Obligation Affect Relationship During Social Distancing? Find it Out Here

Obligation can hamper relationships during social distancing, says a recent research

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Obligation is sometimes the "glue that holds relationships together," but it often carries negative connotations. Pixabay

Does a sense of obligation — from checking on parents to running an errand for an elderly neighbour – benefit or harm a relationship especially at a time where social distancing is in place and people are relying on their immediate social circles more than usual?

According to researchers from Michigan State University, obligation is sometimes the “glue that holds relationships together,” but it often carries negative connotations.”We were looking to find whether obligation is all good or all bad,” said William Chopik, assistant professor of psychology at MSU and co-author of the study.

“We found that people were responding to types of obligations in different ways. People distinguished between requests that were massive obligations and requests that were simple. There’s this point that obligation crosses over and starts to be harmful for relationships,” Chopik mentioned.

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A sense of obligation — from checking on parents to running an errand for an elderly neighbour – benefit or harm a relationship especially at a time where social distancing is in place. Pixabay

The findings suggest that there’s a distinct point at which obligation pushes individuals to the brink of feeling burdened, which can start to harm their relationships. “We found that some obligations were linked with greater depressive symptoms and slower increases in support from friends over time,: said Jeewon Oh, MSU doctoral student and co-author of the study.

However, other obligations were linked with both greater support and less strain from family and friends initially. “While engaging in substantive obligation can benefit others and make someone feel helpful, it is still costly to a person’s time, energy and money,” the authors noted. Until now, similar research showed inconsistencies in how obligation impacts relationships.

This ranges from light obligation, like keeping in touch with a friend, to substantive obligation, like lending that friend a considerable amount of money. “In a way, major obligations violate the norms of friendships,” Chopik said. “Interestingly, you don’t see that violation as much in relationships with parents or spouses”. Friendships are viewed as low-investment, fun relationships that make people feel good.

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If someone doesn’t have a great relationship with a parent or partner, a quick phone call to check in isn’t enjoyable, it’s an encumbrance. Pixabay

“Our longest lasting friendships continue because we enjoy them. But if obligations pile up, it might compromise how close we feel to our friends,” Chopik noted in a paper appeared in International Journal of Behavioral Development. Because friendships are a relationship of choice, people can distance themselves from friends more easily than other types of relationships when faced with burdensome obligations.

Additionally, substantive obligations may create strain in a friendship as we try to encourage our friends to do the same even when they might not be able to do so, Oh said. “Although we may feel good when we do things for our friends, and our friends are grateful to us, we may start to feel like we are investing too much in that relationship,” Oh added.

Also Read- Parental Diet Crucial for Health of Offspring: Study

Still, some types of relationships can make even minor obligations seem daunting. If someone doesn’t have a great relationship with a parent, a quick phone call to check in isn’t enjoyable, it’s an encumbrance. “Even for things we would expect family members to do, some in the study did them begrudgingly,” Chopik said. (IANS)

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Microsoft Witness Significant 775% Increase in Cloud Services

Microsoft has implemented few temporary restrictions designed to balance the best possible experience for its customers

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Despite the significant increase in demand, said Microsoft, it has not had any significant service disruptions. Pixabay

Microsoft has seen a huge 775 per cent increase in its Cloud services in regions that have enforced social distancing or ‘shelter-in-place orders.

Microsoft Teams now has more than 44 million daily users and they generated over 900 million meeting and calling minutes, according to Jared Spataro, Corporate VP for Microsoft 365.

“Windows Virtual Desktop usage has grown more than 3 times. Government use of public ‘Power BI’ to share COVID-19 dashboards with citizens has surged by 42 per cent in a week,” Spataro said in a statement late Sunday. Despite the significant increase in demand, said Microsoft, it has not had any significant service disruptions.

“As a result of the surge in use over the last week, we have experienced significant demand in some regions (Europe North, Europe West, UK South, France Central, Asia East, India South, Brazil South) and are observing deployments for some compute resource types in these regions drop below our typical 99.99 percent success rates,” said the company.

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Microsoft has implemented few temporary restrictions designed to balance the best possible experience for its customers. “We have placed limits on free offers to prioritize capacity for existing customers. We also have limits on certain resources for new subscriptions. These are ‘soft’ quota limits, and customers can raise support requests to increase these limits,” informed Spataro.

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Microsoft has seen a huge 775 per cent increase in its Cloud services in regions that have enforced social distancing or ‘shelter-in-place orders. Pixabay

Impacted customers and partners are notified through the Service Health experience in the Azure portal and/or in the Microsoft 365 admin center. On Xbox Live usage, Microsoft said it is actively monitoring performance and usage trends.

“At the same time, we’re taking proactive steps to plan for high-usage periods, which includes taking prudent measures with our publishing partners to deliver higher-bandwidth activities like game updates during off-peak hours,” the tech giant noted.

ALSO READ: Approx Half of Indian Do Not back Up Their Data or Files, Says Survey

Microsoft said it has been in discussions with several internet service providers (ISPs) that are taking measures to reduce bandwidth from video sources in order to enable their networks to be performant during the workday. (IANS)