Big Life Changes

Hey, it’s been a while huh?

So big news! I graduated college! That’s a pretty big deal!

Honestly, college was the longest, wildest, most life-changing experience I’ve ever been through. These past three and a half years deeply changed me as a person. I learned so much about myself and my role in the… universe? For me, college showed me what I was passionate about and how I could use my talents for my life and career. It taught me about how I relate to other people and how to handle my anxieties and still function as a semi-normal person. I could talk about all of that, but honestly, just watch this video. (It’s long, but I had a lot to say.)

Anyways! I’m home for now, with my parents and little sister, and I’ve started my job hunt! I’m really excited to see where my career search leads. I’m at a very exciting period of my life, but also a bit of a scary one; mainly, because there’s really no way of knowing what my future looks like right now. I’m a perfectionist and a bit of a control-freak, so not knowing what’s ahead can be really scary. However, I’m really excited for my future, for finding the right role, finding my own place, (getting a cat!) For now, I’m trying to live in the moment, take a little bit of a break, and take things as they come.

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Summer Internships

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This summer I’ve had the opportunity to participate in not one, but two internships, based locally in my hometown. I am incredibly lucky to be blessed with the network I have, without which I wouldn’t have either opportunity.

I love both of my internships because they are both directly related to the career that I want to pursue post-graduation, social media management. Not only that, but they are local, (which means no paying for an expensive apartment in an unfamiliar city) and I am getting real-life applicable experience in my chosen field.

Working every day is also a new experience and I have had a very busy summer, but it’s really awesome to see what having a real job is going to be like.

If you want to see what I’ve been up to you can check out @cityofstuartFL @cityofstuart on Twitter and Instagram respectively and @unitedwaymartin on both Twitter and Instagram!

It’s cool to see what working in local government is like, with my internship with the City.  I get to experience working on the monthly newsletter, see what goes into press releases and witness news interviews live, from behind the camera.

For my other internship, I get to see what public relations for a nonprofit is like. I’ve gotten to work hands on with exploring the analytics for all of our social media accounts, compare them to other nonprofit businesses and work on increasing engagement and following. I’ve had the opportunity to learn how to better write for the PR world which is different from news writing, which is new, but still very similar to the background I’m familiar with.

I’m incredibly grateful for these experiences and I am eager to keep learning as much as I can before the summer is over and I head into my final semester as a journalism student at UF.

Top 5 Favorite Starbucks Orders

I’m sitting in Starbucks and I wanted to do a bit of a less formal more fun blog post because why not?

So here are my top five favorite Starbucks orders. (In no particular order.)

*Disclaimer I like black coffee, or just generally less-sweet coffee so keep in mind that you can always order these the normal way or even add cream, sugar, syrup, etc.

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  1. Pike’s Place – I love a medium roast coffee. Sure the blonde roast has more caffeine and the dark roast changes on a regular basis, but I can always rely on good old Pike for that caffeine dose that I need.
  2. Americano – When I first started drinking coffee I was intimidated to order an Americano, I don’t know why it just seemed like on an elite level of coffee that I wasn’t qualified for or something, but Americanos are stinking amazing. (It’s literally just espresso and water, but so good.)
  3. Vanilla Soy Latte with one pump of vanilla – If I’m feeling especially sweet I’ll order this hot beverage. It’s literally so delicious, like drinking a liquid sugar cookie.
  4. Iced Coffee with soy milk and one pump of vanilla – Again back to my obsession with vanilla. I don’t get iced coffee a lot, I prefer hot black coffee, but one of my roommates turned me onto this delicious beverage and it was too good to not make it one of my new faves.
  5. Iced Coffee with light milk – for a less sugary iced beverage I turn to just plain old iced coffee and milk. I can sometimes drink it black, but I prefer at least a little bit of milk, this coffee beverage is perfect for a hot summer day.

So there you have it. Not super varied, I stick to what I like. And you can never go wrong with plain old black coffee. Let me know if you try any of these or what some of your faves are!

Being Kind

This semester has been a doozy and it isn’t even halfway over yet. I’ve learned a lot of lessons so far and I decided today to impart one of them onto my loyal blog readers (hi mom!)

Lesson One: Be Kind to Yourself.

Chances are you are your own worst critic. I know for sure that I am.

I am so quick to not give myself credit for anything.

For example, in my head, I had planned to write this blog post on Wednesday and publish it then. However, Wednesday turned out to be far busier than I expected and I didn’t have time. So, I was getting mad at myself for already messing up a brand new schedule and I thought, “well now there’s no sense in posting anything I’ll just wait until Friday.” And that thought could’ve stopped there. But then I thought, “no that’s dumb, be nice to yourself, it’s okay that you didn’t post anything, you can still write now.”

And that may seem like a frivolous example, but it’s just a small instance of something that I do all the time. I beat myself up over small mistakes and slip ups and then don’t allow myself room to recognize that I’m human, and most importantly that the schedule in my head is only in my head and it’s okay to deviate from it.

Everyone moves at their own pace. Just because you perceive yourself as further behind your peers doesn’t mean that you actually are. Or even if you are you’re moving at your pace, for you. There are people that move slower than that, and people that move faster. The point is to focus on your own personal growth and not constantly compare yourself to others. And believe me, I know how hard this is. I constantly look at my fellow students here at UF and go: “Wow they’re doing so much with their lives and I’m just sitting here.” But if you look at your own life, and the small goals you accomplish every day and delight in those, and give yourself credit for those you’ll feel much better.

Focus on the here and now. Don’t look five years into the future and be upset that you’re not there yet. Future You is very very proud of Past You. And you will get there. (Even if it takes making little baby steps every day.) But if you constantly get upset at not seeing progress now it will make it so much harder to get to that Future You(™) and you’ll spend so much time as Present You being sad and anxious and unmotivated.

I’m learning every day to delight in small successes and it feels so much better than beating myself up about small failures. Because at the end of the day it is both the successes and the failures that make us who we are, so why not focus on the positive parts of you rather than the negative?

 

Melody Monday

I’m going to try this thing where I make thrice weekly posts, but I’m notoriously bad at keeping a schedule. Mondays I’m going to talk about music because I’m a bit of a music snob and I’d love to share what I’ve been listening to lately!

Hope you are all having a good Monday, if not, maybe these sweet tunes will help!

Number One

I Spend Too Much Time in my Room by The Band CAMINO

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This is my actual favorite song of 2018 so far, because it summarizes me as a person. I basically put it on once and then end up repeating it a dozen times.

Number Two

Moving by I Eat Plants for a Living

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This song basically is just my catch-all for a whole genre of music I’ve been listening to non-stop which is just all of those lo-fi hip-hop beats radios/youtube streams. I put this on and study or zone out or what have you. It helps me relax and focus, which is good because I’m typically just a stressed-out person in general.

Number Three

Does Your Heart Break by The Brilliance

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Wow. This song is just stunning it makes me happy and sad at the same time and it’s so powerful. It’s part of a playlist I made on Spotify of uplifting Christian music.

Number Four

I Can’t Decide by the Scissor Sisters

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This one’s a bit old and I haven’t listened to it as much this week, but it’s so upbeat and fun. Plus it’s really great to sing along with once you know all of the words. Basically, just a certified Bop™.

Enjoy and leave a comment if you liked any of them!

The Only Way Out is Through

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Being an adult means doing things you don’t want to do.

That’s been a hard truth to come to terms with. Especially when doing things you don’t want to do means tackling your fears head on, which is something I’ve had to do weekly this semester.

And I know logically that I’m not actually climbing Mount Everest and that I almost definitely will survive the year. But having anxiety makes it very very hard to think logically.

The only way out is through.

I saw that phrase on a friend’s instagram post and surprisingly it’s given me a lot of comfort this year. It’s true. I have to do something I don’t want to do, but it’s an ends to a means, a way out. It’s a necessary obstacle before I am free and not limited by the bounds of my major and classes, but I can truly explore things I’m actually passionate about.

So, do the thing. Even if you really really don’t want to.

Even if you’d give anything to not have to do it.

Because on the other side you’ll be a stronger, wiser, better person and you can explore the realms of creativity and do whatever you heart desires.

Hopefully.

On: Technology and Unhappiness

I recently read an article that said, “Teens who spend less time in front of screens are happier — up to a point, new research shows” Which got me thinking. Sure, that jibes, in fact I would almost come to expect it. Some of my happiest moments are definitely not tied to my phone. For example, Christmas morning, I definitely am not on my phone. Hiking with my family in Acadia National Park, I only used my phone to capture photos. But times when I am glued to my phone? When I’m anxious, when I’m feeling introverted, when I’m bored, when I’m feeling particularly avoidant. (Now I’m not saying that’s the only time I use my phone, but bear with me here.)
Last night, I was feeling very anxious. I’m taking a class that stresses me out a lot because it really puts me out of my comfort zone. And when I’m feeling anxious I go on my phone to distract myself. I watch funny videos on YouTube, I scroll mindlessly through Tumblr reading funny memes or looking at gifsets of whatever fandom I’m interested in at the moment. It helps me feel better.
The article stated: “It also found that adolescents’ psychological well-being decreased the more hours a week they spent on screens, including the Internet, social media, texting, gaming, and video chats. The findings jibe with earlier studies linking frequent screen use and teenage depression and anxiety.”
Now my question is, this link here, is it perhaps reversed? Are teens who are already anxious and depressed on their phones more, or are phones themselves making the teens anxious and depressed? Because like I said before my phone and computer are frequently a way for me to escape, to avoid whatever is causing me distress. (Yes I know this is an unhealthy avoidance tactic and I would be better off exercising or meditating, I took Abnormal Psych, I know.) BUT, I’m just putting it out there, that when you read these articles, see these headlines, and immediately jump into the “AHH! Technology is bad! I need to throw away my phone and escape into the alps.” Maybe, it’s not the technology, but you.
I’ve been thinking about my dependence on my phone for an escape a lot lately, and while I know I can’t quit cold turkey, I do want to endeavor to rely less on my phone to distract me and try a more healthy alternative.
Food for thought.