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Dealing With Stress 101

November 14, 2014 in Alive Campus, Campus Life, Health

Dealing with a lot of stress can lead to health issues and a lot of anxiety. At the end of the semester, I tend to gather a lot of stress due to final projects, presentations, and papers, but I deal with the stress in many different ways. There are four different ways I deal with stress: I spend spend time with my family, with my friends, watch some TV, and go for a walk.

Stress Management

Stress Management!

Spend Time With My Family: Spending time with my family is the best way I get some relief from stress. I always take mini breaks when I am working on papers or projects and go relax by talking with my mom, dad, or my brothers and sisters. Just by spending three to five minutes with them I feel relaxed. When I go back to my work, I am able to think more clearly and be more productive. I am sure this happens to a lot of people, and it is a routine when dealing with not only school stress, but personal, work, and life stress. The best part I love about being able to relax when I spend some time with my family they always find a way to make me laugh, even from the smallest actions I make, I get to laugh and that takes away a lot of my stress.

Spend Time with Friends: This is the second best way to relax and get rid of my stress. It is always fun to spend time with my friends and we always make jokes and laugh at old memories and new ones. Even though I do not get to see them every day like I used to in high school now that we are in college because we do not go the same college. I try to at least hang out with my friends once a week. Looking forward to spend some time with my friends, usually at the end of the week, motivates me to get through the week and when the day comes to hang out with them afterwards I feel relax and more motivated to get work done.

Watch Some TV: To some, this may not seem like the most effective and healthiest to relax and relief some stress, but to me this is the best way to relax if it really cold outside or I feel like going for a walk, hang out with friends, or spend some time with my family.

Go for a Walk: Going out for a walk a great way, of many, to relief some stress. Walking and getting exercise helps the body relax and take the mind off work and life. I recommend to take a walk for at least 30 to an hour four times a week because it will help your body and your mind.

Every person does not deal with stress the same way, but what ever method you use the most important part is to feel relax and give the mind some relief from everyday stressors. 

Top 10 Signs You’re Still Doing College All Wrong

November 5, 2014 in Campus Life, Top 10 Lists

Top 10 Signs You're Still Doing College All Wrong

Top 10 Signs You’re Still Doing College All Wrong

I can’t pretend that I have all the answers when it comes to college life, but there are certain things that everyone should know. There’s simply no other way to put it. If you’re guilty of one or more things on this list, you’re doing this college thing all wrong.

1. You don’t even know your RA’s name. It’s on his or her door. There’s no excuse. They wear a name tag and they usually live in your building. You probably had to meet them, attend a floor meeting with them, get them to unlock your door, etc. If you need some type of assistance with your living situation, they are your go-to person. Know their name and know who they are.

2. You don’t have any friends in your classes. Study groups are super helpful and it helps to know at least a few people when group projects come up. Make the effort know at least one other person.

3. You don’t participate or ask questions in class. How do you expect to learn if you don’t seek clarification on things? Chances are, if you ask, your professors will at least attempt to help you.

4. You don’t even know where your professors’ offices are. It’s on the syllabus and they’ve probably mentioned it in class. If you don’t have it, find it. Your professors set aside office hours to help students out. If don’t know when and where these office hours are, you can’t benefit from them.

5. You’ve never eaten at the dining hall alone because it’s awkward. You may think people are judging you, but most people aren’t. You may think it’s uncool to sit alone, but it’s actually not. Sometimes class schedules don’t match up. It happens.

6. You make sure to let people know that your major is actually important. I don’t care if you know you’ll have a job lined up after college because people in your field are so in-demand right now. People will strongly dislike you if you talk down about their majors.

7. You’re not trying to make any new friends. Not everyone is a social butterfly and not everyone wants 20 million friends. But don’t decide to cut new people out of your life because you don’t think you need new friends. You never know who you’ll need.

8. You haven’t found you passion (and you’re not looking). It’s one think to not know what you want to do for the rest of your life; many other college students are in the same boat. But if you don’t care to find it, you might be wasting time and money in college.

9. You’re afraid to be yourself around your friends. This is all wrong. If you feel like you can’t be yourself in front of your friends, then you’ve found the wrong group of friends. Figure this out as soon as possible and move on it you have to.

10. You don’t know where the library is. Some people don’t like studying in the library, so they just don’t go. I study in my room because it’s convenient and not as busy as the library on campus. But if you don’t know where it is, a serious problem exists. The library has tons of resources and, even if you never end up needing them which is super unlikely, you should at least know where it is.

Welcome to College: Here’s Your (Mini) Bucket List

September 7, 2014 in Academics, Alive Campus, Campus Life, Career, Events, Sports, Top 10 Lists, Travel

  1. Join a club

Joining a club not only allows you to meet people, but it also teaches you to work with others and to try new things. Stepping out of your comfort zone and participating in something that you may not be good at, or have much knowledge about can be difficult, but it’s worth it. You’ll learn so much about yourself, and you may even make some close friends there. Even trying something new and then quitting is better than not trying at all – most of the time, you’ll learn to love what you got yourself into.

2.    Go to a play or concert

Even if your school doesn’t have a good theatre/arts program, it’s still worth seeing your classmates perform. It takes a lot of practice and bravery to stand up in front of a crowd and perform, and those people deserve an attentive audience (that’s where you come in). If your school doesn’t have an arts program at all, find one in the city or town nearest you! If you’re as lucky as I am and have a thriving city like Boston nearby, take advantage of it. There are always tons of events going on in cities – find something you like, or want to try, and check it out!

Go to a theatre production

Go to a theatre production

3.    Attend an athletic event

Whether your school is successful or not at certain sports, it’s still nice to go support your fellow students, just as it is in artistic performances. Athletes train long and hard to perform at their best, and they play even better when they have a whole stadium full of supporters goading them on. Plus, it’s a fun way to meet other people – and you get to make up weird cheers!

Cheer on classmates at an athletic event

Cheer on classmates at an athletic event

4.    Party (at least once)… for most, that won’t be a problem at all

Most people go to a party and fall in love with the lifestyle. To them, it’s a great way to let off steam, unwind from a tough week, forget about classes, and make memories (if you actually remember anything from those Saturday nights….) with friends. However, some people don’t like that lifestyle at all – they’d rather do something at home, or go to dinner, or see a movie. No matter which type of night you prefer, try both. That way, you’ll appreciate being able to cuddle up and watch a movie in bed, but you’ll also get to experience the typical college experience of going out and drinking.

College Experience 101: Party

College Experience 101: Party

5.    Take a class unrelated to your major/a subject you’re interested in

We spend so much time learning what we “have” to know, so it’s good to change it up and take a class that isn’t part of your major but that you’re curious about. You learn better/more when you are actually passionate about learning something, rather than dreading it. Plus, taking a class outside your major can be a refreshing break – when you’re sick of doing bio homework, you can turn to the art project you need to complete, or write a short story.

6.    Live on campus

Though most people will live on campus for all four years of college, it’s still worth putting on this list. Being on campus allows you to experience the freedom you didn’t have at home. You get to control when you go to sleep, when/what you eat, what you do in free time.

Dorm Life

Dorm Life

7.    Live off campus (if you can)

Living off campus is also a useful experience. You may not have a meal plan and you will have a longer commute to campus. You’ll not only have to learn how to cook for yourself (or spend all your money eating out, which I don’t recommend), and you’ll really learn to plan ahead so that you get places on time. Living off campus will definitely make you a more responsible and productive person.

Live in a "real" apartment

Live in a “real” apartment

8.    Study abroad

Studying abroad, or any sort of international travel is an incredibly valuable experience. Going to a different country opens your eyes to new cultures, languages, people, and ideas; traveling teaches you equally important lessons about life and interacting with others.

Travel

Travel

9.    Find something you love doing

This goes back to the idea of taking a class that you’re interested in, but may not fall into your major. If you find a subject or discipline that you are drawn to and passionate about, don’t ignore that feeling. Even if you’ve wanted to be a doctor your entire life, or your parents push you to becoming a lawyer – follow your own head and heart (sorry, didn’t mean to be cheesy). College is the time to discover what you really love doing and what you’re good at. If you find something that doesn’t fit in to what you were doing before, don’t ignore it – take a long hard look at whatever it is, and ask yourself if this were something you’d like to pursue more seriously.

10. Internship

Internships are a great way to get experience in the field you’re looking to go into, and it also gives you a chance to see if it’s actually something you could do for life. The things we’re interested in can look nice and fine from the outside, but sometimes it’s a different story when you’re actually doing it. Internships also look great on the resume and allow you to build contacts when looking for future employers or opportunities.

Free Time and How I Spend it

August 16, 2014 in Alive Campus, Campus Life

My friend Ryan and I knitting during our first year at Stonehill

My friend Ryan and I knitting during our first year at Stonehill

I consider free time to be a time in the day where I don’t have any obligations. No class, no work shift, no club meetings. It may be when I could probably be doing my homework, but where I have enough time to do something fun before I get down to business. Although sometimes it seems like I have no time at all, there’s always some, even if it’s on the weekend.

When I was a first year student, I didn’t have much going on, but I got a work study job and joined a club or two to do something with all of my spare time. I would suggest doing the something similar or join a sport. You want to keep a little busy so that you’re getting out of your room, and you’re not constantly sitting around being bored. It will take up some of your “free time,” but you’ll more likely cherish your extra time, because believe me, it can be hard to get.

Free time during my day could start with a break in between classes or a walk to the library. I’ll usually call my mom or text one of my friends just to see what’s going on or vent about how busy I feel. It’s great to have a sense of support even when they’re not physically with me. They help me see things differently and they usually know what to say. It definitely helps wash away worries and I leave the conversation feeling level-headed.

When I have more time, and I’m not doing homework, I’ll hang out in a friend’s room and talk or watch a movie. We tend to see each other more during the week than the weekend, ironically. We always procrastinate together, but I find that time with friends is never really wasted.

I’m not usually able to fit this into my day to day schedule, but I like to knit or crochet. Yes, it’s grandma, but it’s so relaxing, and the end result is a perfect gift for a birthday or Christmas. One of my best friends at school knits, so we spent a lot of time doing that during our first year. It’s a hobby that doesn’t take a lot of focus, especially if it’s a project you’ve done before, and that’s what taking a break is all about.

When they’re not watching movies or tv in their free time, my friends like to go to the gym or volunteer. A friend of mine is big on lifting weights. She has her leg day, arms, abs, etc. Hopefully she can train me this semester, but we’ll see how long that lasts (I don’t work out). Working out is awesome for relieving stress. It can boost your mood and make you feel good (supposedly).

Last year another friend was required to volunteer within a course, but she liked it so much that she continued it when the course was over. Volunteering is a productive way to serve others and do something good. Plus, getting off campus for a while can be refreshing. In my first year, I volunteered at an animal shelter. Unfortunately, I couldn’t continue with it because it conflicted with my schedule, but since then I’ve wanted to volunteer again. Hopefully I can fit something in this semester.

Free time doesn’t come often, so make it worthwhile. If you have time in between class or before work, use it. Because when you have to do hours of homework, you’re going to wish you had used that time to do something fun.

5 Tips To Help You Be A Good Roommate

August 14, 2014 in Campus Life, Colleges

 

Be The Best Roommate Ever

Be The Best Roommate Ever

Having a roommate can be one of the best experiences in college or, easily, one of the worst. Whether you’ve decided to room with a friend or a total stranger, the rules are still the same. If you want to have a good relationship with your roommate, it all starts with you. Follow these five tips to avoid the common mistakes that turn good roommate relationships sour:

1. Talk Things Out. You’ve heard it before: communication is key. If something happens, sit down with your roommate and have a face-to-face conversation. I’ve seen roommate relationships fall apart because something happens and, instead of talking to each other, they start complaining about their roommates behind their backs. This method creates nothing but awkward situations and general unhappiness. I don’t recommend it.

2. Just Talk. After you and your roommate are fully moved in, just talk. Don’t reserve communication for when something’s wrong. Take the opportunity to get to know your roommate. Around 10 PM, when I was sure my roommate had finished moving in, I went over to say hi. We ended up talking for a really long time and I learned so much about her!

3. Don’t Expect To Be Best Friends. Some roommates become the best of friends, and some don’t. Don’t put the pressure on yourself or your roommate to reach this level, especially when you first meet. Remember, you’re trying to make a new friend, not scare your roommate away. And if your roommate doesn’t end up being your best friend, don’t worry about it. My first-year roommate and I didn’t end up becoming best friends, but we are friends and I’m couldn’t have been happier with my roommate situation.

4. Clean Up After Yourself. Or, at least, keep your mess on your side. This should go without saying. Don’t be a slob. But, if that ship has sailed, just don’t bury your roommate in your clothes and garbage and you should be all right, for the most part. Most people I’ve encountered in college are messy. You don’t have all the time in the world to clean your room and keep it organized. But being considerate with where you put your stuff will help you avoid conflict.

5. Ask Before You Take. This applies to food, clothes, supplies, and anything else that you don’t own. If you want to lose a friend, borrow everything without taking. If you want to keep the relationship going, show your roommate that you have respect for what is theirs by asking first. Even if you both agree to share everything, you should still ask.

If You Don't Own It, Don't Take It Without Asking

If You Don’t Own It, Don’t Take It Without Asking

The bottom line is this: if you want a good roommate, you have to be a good roommate. Yes, there are exceptions. Sometimes, being a good person and reaching out to your roommate simply aren’t enough. Sometimes, you get stuck with someone who has tons of negative energy or just isn’t happy and doesn’t want any sort of relationship. But, whatever the case, the name of the game is respect. If you can’t give it, you definitely don’t deserve to get it.