11 Ways To Treat Yourself After A Difficult Week

Well, hello again—did you miss me? Okay, it hasn’t been that long but this is definitely the longest I’ve ever gone without blogging and holy hell, it sucks. It’s at that point in the semester where everyone is up to their perfectly curled eyelashes in homework, studying, projects for class, work obligations, and all the other crap we’re so desperately trying to ignore right now. And I don’t know about you, but I’ve had it up to here with not having enough time to myself to catch up on a Netflix show, or mindlessly scroll through social media.

I know, I know, things have been wild for you, too. You slept through all of your early morning classes this week; you forgot to turn in a major homework assignment; your group project buddies are driving you insane. Essentially, shit is happening and you don’t have time for that. And, that’s why I decided to write this blog post. While it’s important to stay committed to completing assignments and working toward your degree and professional goals, it’s also extremely important to take care of yourself and make sure you’re happy. You may have read my post on Habits That Will Make You Happier In College (and if you haven’t, go check it out!!) and I really enjoyed writing that post, and it looks like y’all really loved reading it. So I’m kind of zooming in on the small things you can do weekly when you really need a pick-me-up after a hectic week of very little sleep and wearing the same outfit everyday to save what little time you have in the morning.

1. Go on a date with your close friends. 

Friend dates are the perfect way to catch up with anyone you haven’t been able to chill with too much during the semester, and it’s way nicer than the two-second conversation you have when passing each other in the library. Pick a favorite spot and do brunch on a weekend, or get dressed up and go out to dinner with your girls.

Related: How To Enjoy The Summer With Friends

2. Go on a date with yourself. 

If you feel like you need some time to be alone, take yourself on a date! It’s the perfect way to explore something you’re interested in and go places on your own terms—no having to wait for your friends to finish styling their hair, and no having to go where someone else wants to go. Check out museums, galleries, and any tours you might be interested in attending.

3. Bake cookies, cupcakes, or other goodies. 

I had to put this one on my list because this is something I plan to do this weekend! I’m a huge baking fanatic and haven’t made a cupcake in so long, so I’m really excited to do this. Baking can be relaxing and I love seeing the look on other peoples’ faces when I bring them something homemade, so if you’re someone who usually enjoys baking goodies, use your chill time to whip up a batch of something yummy.

4. Hop back on a hobby you used to have a lot of time for. 

I know people don’t usually have time for major hobbies when they’re super stressed with work, but it doesn’t hurt to spend a day doing something you used to love. I could crochet and make bracelets for hours on end before coming to college, so those are two hobbies I would consider picking back up for a day when I feel like getting away from obligations.

5. Sleep in. 

I think this might be a favorite on this list, but you can never go wrong with giving yourself some extra hours of relaxation. And, relaxation doesn’t even need to be getting pampered and giving yourself a mani pedi. Sleeping in will feel so insanely good after weeks and weeks of having to wake up (or failing to wake up) at the ass crack of dawn.

Related: How To Get 8+ Hours Of Sleep In College

6. Try something you’ve always wanted to try. 

It can be something crazy like ziplining or something lowkey like eating at a new restaurant. Either way, this is the perfect time to whip out your bucket list and start trying to cross off a few things (see what’s on the ultimate winter bucket list!).

7. Binge watch a new show on Netflix. 

Next to sleeping, binge watching shows on Netflix may be the second best thing on here. There’s something so satisfying about laying in bed under the warm covers with your laptop on your, well, lap and just getting lost in the next episode of Grey’s Anatomy, or whatever you watch.

8. Host a girls’ night. 

What’s more fun than gathering your closest girls and bonding over some wine grape juice and cheese?? This is the perfect way for a couple of friends to take the night off and catch up with everything that’s happening in each others’ lives. There are so many fun things you can do together—make cocktails, watch a movie, hell, you could even make baking cookies a girls’ night activity.

9. Paint your nails and do a face mask while sipping Shirley temples. 

I guess this is also a cute girls’ night idea, but it can also work for a night of solo fun, especially if you’re as obsessed with Shirley temples as I am. It’s a nice way to have a few hours of peace to yourself and you’re skin will be *glowing* after that face mask!

Related: How To Relax And Enjoy Alone Time In College

10. Do something that inspires you. 

This is a great way to keep your motivation up, too. Use your chill time to catch up on the podcasts you’ve been meaning to listen to for the last few weeks, or start learning the new language you’ve always wanted to learn. Set yourself up to start doing it and you’ll feel so good afterward that you’ll want to continue.

11. Take a day off from doing work. 

This is probably one of the BEST ways to treat yourself. Even if you don’t listen to any of these ideas, simply doing anything but school work is a great way to relax. In fact, I find that sometimes doing nothing makes me feel even better (this coming from a girl who likes to always be doing something!).

What are your favorite ways to treat yourself? 

6 Ways To Maintain A Positive Attitude

Okay, life certainly isn’t a big basket of puppies, cakes, and Starbucks iced coffee; things go wrong when we least expect them to. We forget our presentation notes on our desk because we’re running late; we miss the train and won’t be able to get the next one for another three hours; our week has been so busy that we’ve left certain obligations for the last possible minute—alright, I think you get the idea. And it’s totally okay to get pissed off and throw a mini tantrum when these things happen, but it’s also important to learn how to get over how much your situation sucks and charge forward.

Also read: 7 Things To Do If You’re Falling Behind In Class

I know one bad thing can really ruin a person’s attitude for the rest of the day, but don’t let that get to you and certainly don’t let it stop you from making your day better. At the risk of sounding like one of those people on before and after commercials, I used to be upset for hours when something bad happened or didn’t work out well at all for me. It was so bad that my negativity would pretty much sabotage any chance I had at improving the rest of my day or having a better mood at the very least. Now, I’d pretty much just laugh it off or poke fun at my situation and find a way to make it work for me.

No, it’s not sorcery (I haven’t quite mastered that yet) but it is totally worth the effort. Especially since positive thinking can impact various areas of your life. Read on if you want to find out what tips and tactics I used to improve my attitude!

1. Embrace the mess.

I went to a conference this summer where I got to hear the ever-famous Ann Shoket speak as a guest and it was honestly eye-opening. She taught us that crazy shit happens, even to her and she’s the former Editor in Chief of Seventeen magazine! But she taught us that while you can’t always avoid or control messes, you can embrace them.

Acknowledge that things can and probably will go wrong, and when they do, instead of freaking out and stressing yourself out even more, think of a way to improvise the situation.

Related: 11 Things To Do When You Feel Overwhelmed In College

2. Surround yourself with positive people.

If you’re constantly around people who only look at things negatively, you’re going to start having the same outlook. While I don’t necessarily consider myself extremely optimistic all the time, I do try to look at things realistically—seeing both the positives and the negatives to really make sense of a situation. It’s nice to have people who think positively because they can often give you a perspective you might not have thought of since you were too busy feeling angry or upset. Not only that, but also try to surround yourself with people who are doing positive things. This can help you motivate each other, and you’ll have so much fun cheering each other on. And, if you’ve got the time, check out my post on How To Make New Friends In College.

3. Spend time in your favorite place.

I think almost everyone has that one place that they can just go to when they want to escape, or where they feel that they operate their best at. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while now, you probably already know where that place is for me (*cough* Starbucks *cough*). I just feel like I can accomplish anything with dim lights, chill music, and an iced coffee next to me. It’s where I feel the most creative and the most focused. If you aren’t sure where your favorite place is yet, think of this mission as an excuse to wander campus for a bit and go looking for it. And if you’re not in college, wander around your neighborhood for a bit. Discover a new cafe or a new spot in the library or park that you can call your place.

4. Do something that makes you happy at least once a week.

Are you at your happiest when you’re binge-watching Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix? Maybe popping a sheet of chocolate chip cookies into the oven is your version of relaxing. Whatever your “happy” activity is, try to make some time every week to do it. Trust me, I know that’s way easier said than done, but try moving a few things around in your schedule in order to make time for it. I love baking and used to have a blog full of photos of cakes and cookies that I made, but since I started college, I’ve been slowly baking less and less—I haven’t baked a damn thing all semester (except for cookies for an event I hosted but that’s different). To make more time for baking, I’m going to try simply waking up earlier on the weekends (even though sleeping in sounds really nice).

Related: 10 Habits That Will Make You Happier In College

5. Don’t dwell.

The phrase, “it is what it is” has more or less become a motto of mine in recent months. There’s no turning back; it’s out of my hands; there’s nothing else I can do; what’s done is done. I don’t like dwelling on what could have been or what should have happened if something negative that’s out of my control occurs. I feel like it takes so much energy to cry over spilled milk, and you waste so much time doing that when you could be planning how to be even more awesome next time. We can’t go back in time and change things, unfortunately, so we need to learn to move forward and make the next day or next experience better.

6. Look for the positives in any situation.

This is where having a positive friend group can help you out if you don’t think you’re the best at coming up with the bright sides. The pros don’t have to be anything huge or fantastic, and in fact, they’re usually the little things that remind us that it could be worse. When my friend and I attended College Fashion Week this year, we missed our train back to campus by one minute and had to wait three hours at Penn Station for the next one. My list of positives?

  • At least there are outlets in the waiting area for charging our phones.
  • At least we have some time to go through the free stuff we got.
  • At least I have comfortable shoes to change into.
  • At least we don’t have class in the morning.

While I was really annoyed about missing the train at first, thinking about all those positives and more actually brightened my mood and I didn’t care as much. I was just glad that my friend and I had a fun time and that we were warm and content and could wait it out with each other. It was quite an unforgettable experience, to be honest, but we handled it pretty well and we’re able to laugh about it.

I hope you enjoyed reading my tips for keeping a positive attitude! And, if it’s something you think you need to work on, I really hope you’ll try some of these out.

What are your tips for maintaining a positive attitude? 

 

Tips For Staying On Track To Graduate College In 4 Years

How To Graduate College In 4 Years

I recently enrolled in my classes for next semester and something major hit me: I only have two classes left for my degree and I’m graduating in the spring. But before I go on about how quickly four years fly by, let me just say that there is no dominating rule that you need to graduate college in four years. Things happen: you might end up doing a 5-year program instead; you might decide that you want to take an extra semester or year—whatever. It’s totally okay to graduate from college whenever you need to. But I know there are some people who might be very concerned with finishing in four years for whatever their reasons may be, so I decided to write this blog post to give you tips on how to do that.

When I entered college as a freshman, I was a Health Science major on the pre-med track, and I studied all science and math classes for my entire freshman year before realizing I didn’t want to be a doctor. After that, I changed my major around a few times but sophomore year I settled on Journalism. At my school, Journalism is the second heftiest degree with 124 credits needed to graduate. My advisers warned me that I may not finish all my classes by Spring 2018 because the major is so demanding and I was already behind, but I was all like, ‘well, watch me,’ and I pushed on. Fast forward almost six semesters and here I am. So yeah, it is possible even if you are behind in your major.

If finishing in four years is something that stresses you out or something you hope to do, I’m sharing things that I’ve been doing in order to stay on track to graduate on time. So, keep reading to find out more!

1. Take “stupid” required curriculum courses seriously.

I’m pretty sure every college has mandatory curriculum requirements intended to make you more well-rounded. So, students are usually expected to take an art class, math class, technology class, and others even if they don’t necessarily fit with their major. I know a lot of people complain about these courses and don’t take them seriously, only to end up failing the course. Or, they may just put off taking these classes because they “don’t want to waste their time” with them, only to end up not being able to get into them when the final semester nears.

Always keep track of what requirements you have left! Go to an adviser and see where you are if you don’t know how to check your progress yourself. Your adviser can even make class recommendations depending on your interests. You may hate having to take these classes, but you won’t graduate if you don’t take them seriously!

Related: 13 Tips For Getting A’s In Your Classes

2. Take classes that can satisfy more than one requirement.

I found that a lot of the curriculum courses I took ended up satisfying more than one curriculum requirement. For example, a graphic design class I took satisfied my art requirement and my technology requirement (bonus points if it also satisfies part of your major or minor!). It’s just an easy way to finish your curriculum requirements faster so you don’t have to think about that remaining two or three during your final semester.

3. Go to your adviser for any and all issues.

Don’t worry about annoying your adviser with your pretty face all the time—that’s what they’re there for! I’m the kind of person who runs into my adviser’s office for almost every little thing (if I can’t find the answer to my question online or something). It’s comforting to have a definitive, authoritative answer to my questions and problems, and I like to address any potential issues before they become major. Follow whatever directions you need to follow for making an appointment with your adviser. You don’t need to see them every week, but a good rule of thumb would be to see them once when the semester begins and see them again before you enroll in next semester’s classes. This way, you’ll know exactly what to take to stay on track.

Related: Tips For Creating The Perfect Class Schedule

4. Come up with a class enrollment strategy before you see your adviser.

I’m kind of a problem-solver and I like to already have a solution in mind before I approach someone with my problem. So, for most of college I’d think of what I want my schedule for next semester to look like, jot down any questions I have about it, and then see my adviser to get their input and show them what I came up with. I know some people say they feel like their advisers take control and force them to take classes they don’t want to take or deter them from taking classes that could fit into their schedule, so this is a way of regaining that control. It’s your college career, after all. Don’t be afraid to voice your concerns and be a little pushy (pushy, but not rude!). When I started the Journalism major, I was so behind that I pushed my adviser to let me take some of my 200-level courses alongside their pre-requisite 100-level courses so I’d be right where I needed to be.

5. First semester freshman year will probably be the only time you have a 12-credit schedule.

Not gonna lie, you’re going to have at least one semester where you’re packing in a shit ton of classes. It’s going to be stressful as hell and you’re going to curse yourself the entire time for doing it, but you’ll feel super accomplished when the semester is over and you can finally say that you did it. This was definitely the biggest way that I kept myself on track for graduating. This semester is insane for me because of that (I’m taking seven classes, yikes!) and while I countdown every week till the end of the semester, I know I’m going to say that it’s so worth it. Plus, it’s really putting my time management skills to the test, so yay for that.

I’m not telling you to go crazy and have a 20-credit schedule every semester; know yourself and know how much you can handle. Don’t be afraid to take it easy one semester, especially if the previous one was really rough. Also, if you’re interested, check out my post on How To Balance School, Work, And A Social Life In College.

6. Take classes during the winter and summer sessions.

When the fall semester of my sophomore year was coming to an end, my adviser told me that I would have to take a winter class in order to have a chance at catching up in the program. Yeah, it was extra money in tuition and living on campus, but it was so worth it. I know taking another class during a time is the last thing you want to do, but it can really be the difference between being behind and being right where you need to be. Pro tip: don’t wait until junior year to see if you can take a 300-level class for your major during the winter session because they usually only offer 100-level and 200-level (if you’re lucky) courses.

Related: How To Survive Winter Session Classes In College

 

7. Don’t give up if you get locked out of a class during enrollment.

Listen, your advisers can pull more strings than they might be willing to admit. I know the queasy, panicky feeling of seeing the big, fat red ‘x’ on my enrollment page because a class I need is full or I ‘don’t have permission to enroll’ in it all too well, and, trust me, you’re gonna want to freak out at first. But don’t. See if your adviser would be willing to throw you into the class anyway. Most of the time, they can give you permission to take a certain class and you can enroll above the capacity or as a co-requisite. But you’d have to present a convincing case if you’re trying to take the class as a co-requisite with something, so be prepared. I’ve done this more times than I care to remember, and it has helped me out so much.

8.  Take your time when planning your schedule.

You can’t plan a schedule in 30 minutes, so make sure you set aside two or three hours to really think about what you need to take and what can work with your schedule. Set aside some time during the day to just relax and think about what classes are next in your sequence. I like sitting in the couches at Starbucks and blasting Marina and the Diamonds through my earbuds when I plan my schedule because I find the setting so relaxing.

Are you going to be a graduating senior? What are you most excited for?