The socioemotional selective theory

As Santrock states, the socioemotional selective theory indicates that as adults grow older, they are more selective about their social networks. I believe that taking a socioemotional selective approach is a valuable way to approach relationships. By an individual narrowing their social contacts, they “maximize positive emotional experiences and minimize emotional risk” (Santrack, 2017). As one begins to age, they may begin to spend time with people that care about them and vice versa. By doing so, they ensure that they have healthy relationships, which allows for fewer stressors in their lives. In addition, to have fewer stressors in our life, individuals may have improved physical and mental health. I do believe that this approach can be used in other parts of the development. I think most individuals begin to use this approach when they are entering early adulthood; they learn from their mistakes during adolescence or transitioning into adulthood. I know that I’ve definitely used this approach. Before I graduated from college, I use to have a wide range of friends, but as the years have passed, the number of friends I actually keep in contact with is much smaller than before. You begin to invest more time in yourself and see what is best for you when it comes to certain situations rather than what is convenient. “Older adults consciously choose to decrease the number of their social contacts… spending increasing time in emotionally rewarding moments with friends and family” (Santrock, 2017). I think, for the most part, many individuals would agree that as you get older, your circle of friends gets smaller, but the relationships are healthier and are more stable.

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