Staying Sane This Summer

If there comes a time where I don’t start a blog post talking about how I’m so sorry I haven’t posted in forever because of how busy I am…honestly although that’s the goal, I think we should all be a little worried. I thrive off of staying occupied and involved 24/7 and this summer is no exception! I am having a blast and a half at my digital marketing and advancement internship at my high school this summer, getting my own cubicle, camera, and Instagram login (the whole 9 yards and I am totally geeking out, lol.)  In addition to that, I am nannying here and there, an!d working at my restaurant job during nights and weekends. Oh, and keeping up with all Panhellenic needs via email 24/7. Needless to say, I am also finding time to sleep and eat somewhere in there!!! I’ve quickly developed a few habits that are allowing me to get everything I need to do while still not losing my mind! Although, that admittedly has happened a few times due to an unexpected dead camera battery or a 2-year old that is so overdue for a nap!

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LEAVE  WORK AT WORK!!!! With two of my jobs being highly social media and online communication based, this one can sometimes be tough. However, I have come to realize that minus a few small tasks here and there, there really is nothing that was assigned Friday at 10pm that can’t wait until Monday morning at 8am when I return to my cubicle to accomplish. Learning to let go of my to-do list can be hard when in the digital age we live in, things can be requested of you at a moment’s notice via text and I can get notified that I need to edit something at 6pm on a Saturday night, but it’s wild how the world keeps spinning if instead, I stick to my weekend plans if the task means going out of my way to go back into a “work” mindset. I’ve learned I get so much more done during the workday if I know that’s the only time I am allowing myself to do so! This habit works best if you make sure you inform those you work with that this is your schedule as well. Most people are happy to respect it, as long as you make them aware it’s still on your to-do list and you are hearing their request!

Morning “Fuel Up”!!!! I used to be a HUGE morning person in high school. Like, up a good hour before I needed to leave for morning dance team practice, full hot breakfast cooked, coffee drank and lunch packed all before 6am kind of morning person. No clue what college did to my body or mindset but needless to say, this is for sure not still the case. Mornings are quite the struggle for me, but going through a work week that involves me being up and ready to function before 8am means finding solutions to that. Drinking water BEFORE my coffee is a huge one that I have been in the habit of for years now, but recently I have switched from the water from my refrigerator to room temp water. Sounds silly, but I heard it somewhere and decided to give it a try! When your water isn’t freezing cold, as refreshing as it can be on summer days like this, waking it up with room temp water allows it to absorb quickly into your body and fuel you up faster!

Plot Your Time For EVERYTHING!!!! Keeping this one short and sweet: if you want to do it. put it on your calendar. give it a time slot. whether it’s a nap. a shower. your workday. plan. plan. plan.

Figure Out What Works!!!!! Do you work well under high management or high freedom? Do you prefer requests texted or emailed to you? Do you work best all at once or with breaks? Find out what works best for YOU and make sure those around you are aware as well! The best way to get things done is to get them done YOUR way!

Learn Something New / Keep Up!!! I will go in spurts of being really on top of this and then die down when I get super busy. It’s SO important to keep updated on news not only within your field or specialty but with the world as well! My favorite way to quickly do so is using The Skimm email subscription! The news is delivered to me in a fun and quite often, funny, way every morning so I never feel out of the loop! Another way I love to keep myself learning is through things like blogging or my internship! I am constantly having to use new programs, applications, and adjusting to new processes. Google and YouTube may be my best friends, but nothing feels better than finally getting an HTML code to work or finding that crop button on InDesign you had to spend 20 minutes searching for. (Guilty.) Keeping yourself open to learning new things and not saying no to a project just because you don’t understand quite how to accomplish it can leave you feeling in a creative rut! Plus, I’m a week away from 20 and it’s never too early to start keeping my brain young…right? 😉

Have Fun!!!!! Cheesy, I know, but true! Whether it’s an internship or a day job or a babysitting gig, having fun makes time fly by! Make sure to take some time to laugh throughout the day. This may involve a quick call or text to your funny friend because let me tell you, I’ve learned this summer that there is absolutely nothing funny about Excel spreadsheets!

Hope whatever your summer stress is caused from that this may help you stay sane! Until next time! xoxo, Ally

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Weekly Whirlwind

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Woah hey there, it’s already Wednesday! Apologizes for the lack of posts, I’ll give a more in depth break down to what I’ve been up to in a hot second, but basically I had a quick but rough case of the “Corbin Fever.” Corbin is the name of the residence hall (fun fact: KU doesn’t believe in the term “dorm” and I think it is kinda funny. They encourage our usage of the term “residence hall”)  and it is, generously, very old. Old as in they’re knocking it down to do renovations next year old. Old as in there is A LOT of dirt and grime and getting sick is more of a hobby than a rare occurrence. Starting around 5:30 am on Saturday, I was down for the count and literally did not leave my bed all weekend. Thank goodness for the JCrew website and Gossip Girl to keep me sane. Thankfully I am feeling almost fully better and have been trekking it to all my classes this week!

Speaking of classes…haha welcome to midterms!! I actually only have one real midterm exam this semester but have plenty of projects and Spring Break assignments to make up for that. I don’t mind the assignments keeping me busy, but I am more than ready for a nice break back home.

BEFORE I got sick, my cousin Sam got to come down and hang with me last Thursday! I actually only have one class on Thursday and it ended up getting cancelled which gave us an entire day to just explore campus and downtown. It was 70 degrees, sunny, and the best day. We ate lunch at my sorority, got homemade waffle cones at Sylas and Maddy’s: the best local ice cream stop, got fries and limeade at my favorite pizza place, and got some delish Chinese for dinner. Between all that food, we napped a bit and did a bit of shopping which was SO fun. Lawrence may be a huge college town, but downtown for sure has such a charming and fun personality to just walk and explore.

I am on the membership programming (sisterhood) committee at Alpha Chi and we have been meeting and discussing so many fun events for the spring such as Mom’s Weekend, Finals week, and so many more bonding. Shoot me an email or leave a comment if your sorority does anything super fun I should look into!

Lastly, I have been really trying to go to more daily masses as part of my Lenten promise and last night the campus parish had a surprise birthday party after the 9pm mass for one of our priests! He was so excited to see so many people there to appreciate him, which we really do, he’s the best. 9pm mass is also one of my favorites because the church turns a lot of the lights off and it is just so serene and calming. How are your Lenten promises going if you’re Catholic or practice Lent?

Well I think that’s about it for what I have been up to. I am planning on heading home this weekend after cheering on my Jayhawks in their first March Madness game Friday (fingers crossed for my multiple brackets!) 

Until next time, dream big, xoxo,  Ally

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Stop waiting to be your best you

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I am writing this and per usual haven’t titled it yet, because the way this usually works is that I have a bunch of things I want to say and know how I want to say them, but don’t really understand the entire theme or moral of my story. Literally I am a walking, talking, breathing, children’s story book friends; lots of pretty pictures and a story that takes you through tons of twists and turns before you find out the lesson at the end. lol, would it even be a blog post if I didn’t make a cringe worthy and cheesy as heck metaphor?

February started out FANTASTIC for me. Seriously, Feb 1st was a KU home basketball game v. Baylor (sorry about that, Baylor), I met Chip Gaines from Fixer Upper at the game (and he held my phone to take a video to send to my dad!!! hahah AHHHHH!!!!!), I had stellar seats for the game, the student section was crazy fun during a big season game, I made my ESPN debut (twice!), AND on top of all of that got to briefly hang with a fellow future Jayhawk from my high school who I seriously cannot wait to get to know better & become friends with next year. (Hi Brenna if you’re reading this let’s be friends.) Greatest night of my life thus far at KU. I was dead set on February being the best month of my life, haha, not so much. At least it is the shortest of them all, right??!?!?!

I won’t lie, I spent A LOT of February pouting over things that weren’t going my way or that weren’t working out exactly as I wanted to. I spent more time complaining about my situations rather than working to fix them. Basically, I was not having the best of luck, but also not doing anything to improve that. Moral of the story: I was being very immature and zero help to myself or my bad mood. Sure, a few things happened that I had every right to be upset about, but not for more than an hour max. I saw a quote yesterday that said, “was it really a bad day? Or just a bad 10 minutes that you milked all day?” and it really hit me how negative I was acting about a few downfalls and making it seem like the entire month had to therefore be awful. Quite frankly, just like the very start of the month, a lot of good things happened during February! But I was too busy being so gosh darn caught up in the small mishaps that I didn’t even take time to recognize the good. Big mistake, Ally.

These first few days of March have been pretty good to me. I have realized one big lesson that I keep attempting to learn, but then being scared to fully commit to: you can’t get other people to love you unless you love yourself first. Which goes right alongside: people are going to love you for your best version of yourself, don’t stop being him/her to impress people.

Basically, I’ve learned that pouting about something because it isn’t how you wanted it to be isn’t going to change literally anything, ever. I find myself phsycially letting myself get upset and don’t take care of myself as well as I should be. Aka I won’t dress as nice as I do (yeah tshirts are comfy for class, but sometimes dressing nice is a mentality booster for me, try it!) I will let my desk get messy, won’t consistently make my bed, will find myself not as motivated to do homework, etc. I’m sure you can think of a time in your life where being in a bad mood almost made you feel like you didn’t deserve to be the best version of yourself; as if pouting and not doing the things that make you happy would somehow reverse all of the bad things and fix all your problems. Yeah, as easy and nice as that sounds, that isn’t quite how it works.

Let’s stop waiting around to be the best version of yourself. Back to what I said about people not loving you unless you love yourself. You know what people DON’T wanna be around? Someone who is negative and constantly complaining (guilty as charged on occasion, shoutout to my friends for putting up with me!) You know what people DO want to be around? Someone who is confident in themselves, who doesn’t let little problems knock them down, and who always strives to do their best. We are a compilation of the 5 people we spend the most time with, whether we like it or not. Ask yourself if you would want to spend time around yourself…and let that put your bad mood into perspective.

I know it isn’t always easy to look on the bright side of things. As I said, a few things that made me upset this month were TOTALLY worthy of being upset over! That’s life! That’s being a human! That is having healthy emotions and understanding that life isn’t always going to go our way. However, it is when we let these situations control our daily routine that we then need to take a step back and reevaluate the situation at hand and how we are reacting. Is what we are upset over seriously going to change the person that we are? Probably not, so let’s stop acting like it.

For me, this means forgiving easily. Sometimes it is a downfall, and sometimes I let people walk all over me because of it. But I have learned that staying mad at someone, usually for something they didn’t mean to hurt me because of, isn’t worth it. Your friends are your friends for a reason, and as cheesy as it is, we never know how long we get to have them in our lives, so why wait to hug them and apologize?

For me this also means doing things that make me happy. People are going to love you for you. Your friends became friends with the person that you are when you are happiest. Sure, they are going to be there for you when you’re low as well, but as I can’t seem to reiterate enough this post, allow that to be temporary. Friends encourage each other to be the best versions of themselves. Encourage each other to drink more water (lol, but true.) Encourage each other to laugh and have fun. Encourage each other to pursue passions. Be the kind of friend that is the best version of themselves in order for your friends to be inspired to do so as well.

I have spent so much of my life dreaming about what I will be like when I am older. Seriously, I have had my future home planned out the second I discovered Pottery Barn catalogs. It’s the reason I have a Pinterest board dedicated to ideas for my future kindergarten classroom and organization tips for my junior year at KU when I share a house with my friends. I like to plan things out and dream of the future, when I am eventually the “best version of myself.” However, one thing I realized while evaluating February, was that I need to stop putting off being the best version of myself. I need to stop thinking that one day when I have these certain things and these certain clothes and this certain income and these certain accomplishments, that I will THEN be the best version of myself. Why can’t the best version of myself be the one that does things daily that make her happy? The best version of myself exercises in ways she enjoys every day, such as runs around the campus lake. The best version of herself pushes the dream of going somewhere with this blog and setting aside time to write. The best version of myself compliments my friends and writes them little notes because gifts and surprises are my love language. The best version of myself wears bright colors on cloudy days and always dresses for success. The best version of myself never goes without reminding people I love them, and understands sometimes she needs to work on matching her actions along with that statement. The best version of myself is learning to see the positive in every day, and learning that staying negative improves nobody.

So let’s stop waiting around to finally reach that end goal of the best version of ourself. I promise you, if we keep waiting, we will always find something new we want to wait for. Understand that life gets better when you let it, and that no situation can’t be fixed by your own attitude. You have full power over how you feel, and with a little feel good music, a few personal dance parties, a few good laughs with good friends, and a good mindset, you’ll slowly find yourself having more and more good days.

Let’s show March who is boss, friends.

Until next time, xoxo, Ally

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