During my short 26 years on this earth I’ve been taught a lot of things.
I’ve learned the importance of manners.
I learned self-respect and self-love are the best gifts you can give yourself.
I learned having a budget is the key to financial security.
I learned that college is not always synonymous with education.
I’ve also experienced my fair share of disappointment. Continue reading
Want to be a success? Help the competition
It’s no secret the job market these days is extremely small. And if you are unemployed, it seems as though the job pool is always shrinking by the minute. Throw in the desire to work in a highly coveted field such as journalism plus the fact that the field is constantly being wiped out by the internet and you’ve got yourself in what seems like an extremely complicated 5k with merciless racers and a finish line you just can’t seem to cross. And in that 5k race, the competition is truly ruthless as they trip you, lie, steal and keep secrets from you.
It’s a 5k I’m proud to say that I’ve come out on top. My blog reaches a decent amount of views a day, I’ve had my byline appear in national magazines, I’ve found a balance between my writing and dancing and I’m able to schedule my own hours as I work from the comfort of my home. I’ve certainly had my fair share of competition and have been fortunate enough to beat a few across the finish line. Continue reading
There’s something about Monday’s that make you not want to do anything remotely relating to work. Correction: There’s something about Monday’s that makes you not want to do anything at all. Throw in a the gentle rumble of some thunder and soothing rain and you’re almost guaranteed a day of non-productive activities of cuddling on the couch and watching your favorite movie. In fact, as I write this I’m fighting the urge to crawl into bed and play dead for the rest of the night. Could you blame me? There’s nothing more lethargic than a summer storm. It’s the perfect setting for putting you into pool of laziness.
Usually, that lazy, I’m-stuck-in-a-rut, don’t-even-think-about-talking-to-me, pissed at the world feeling lingers on into Monday. However, this Monday was different. I awoke this morning to 77 degree weather and a sun who’s warm kiss reminded that it was indeed the first full day of summer. I don’t know what it is, but there’s something about summer that makes me feel inspired, motivated and imaginative. And then that feeling quickly vanishes as I realize, my summers will still be filled with work, bills and responsibility that once again settles me into that rut. It’s not like it was when were kids when every new Monday meant a new adventure once school let out. Of course, it only took me a matter of seconds to realize that summer isn’t like it used to be because I changed it to an excuse to fall even deeper into a rut.
As I listen to the kids giggling outside my window, I decided it’s time I look at each summer Monday through the eyes of a child – those eyes that knew every new day was an adventure waiting to be explored. And so, I made a list of my summer adventures to break me out of my rut. Rather than dread every Monday that comes your way, revisit your childhood and make a list of all the things that make you feel like a kid at heart. After all, summer is the perfect excuse to go an adventure.
TERRIfic Quip: It’s Monday. Don’t forget to be amazing.
A good bargain is always right around the corner.
Well, it’s official. Memorial day weekend – time for honoring our fallen soldiers and celebrating their courage all while bringing in the unofficial start of summer – has officially ended. The huddling around the grill has ceased, the beer has dried up and the gas has run out. You might be thinking the money has run out too. After all, with the cost of gas, tolls and beach fees rising, Memorial Day celebrations could be a bit pricey. So obviously a boat load of people will be doing everything in their power to cut back anyway they can.
Of course, I’ve been living in the frugal side of life and cutting back way before Memorial Day. As you may recall, I am aggressively working towards paying off my student loans. Like most people, I believe living debt free will change my life immensely. That means splurging on shoes, eating out, makeup hauls and random samples sales are a big no-no. As a of matter fact, spending money on anything at all is frowned upon until I get my student loan balance down to $0. I’ve been actively hunting down any deals, coupons and any bargains imaginable. On my quest to spend no money ever, I’ve realized that it’s almost impossible. Continue reading
It’s finally here. Memorial day – the unofficial start to summer. It’s the day 80 percent of us are too busy sitting in traffic heading to the beach, babysitting the barbecue grill and throwing back a beer to recognize all the fallen soldiers have done for us. Meanwhile, the other 20 percent recognize what their fallen soldier has fought for, but struggle to remember that he or she is no longer there. Sounds crazy? Well, it’s not.
Time and time again it’s the survivors of the fallen that repeatedly tell me that remembering isn’t the problem; it’s the forgetting they aren’t there that’s the most painful. It’s never hard to remember what rights the soldier fought for. However, it’s the days you absent-mindedly set a plate at the family cookout only to remember your love won’t be joining that is hard. It’s the moment your grandkids say the silliest thing and you pick up the phone to excitedly call their grandmother forgetting that the call will go unanswered. The survivors will always remember the selfless act their fallen hero did for Americans. But they will forgot their presence can longer be physically felt from time to time. Meanwhile, 80 percent of us are too oblivious to notice their pain.
Thats why congress passed the National Moment of Remembrance act to honor those fallen heroes in another way. At 3:00 pm today, we are urged to stop everything for one minute to pay respects to those who served our country in such an honorable way. That means thinking about the major sacrifice soldier took when leaving their family, the sense of uncertainly they felt while on the battle lines and those they left behind who are hurting during those times they forget their loved ones are gone. At 3:00 pm today, you are urged to remember them, pray for them and thank them. It’s because of their selfless act that we are able to enjoy this unofficial start to summer.
And once the clock strikes 3:01 or anytime after that, make a conscience effort to support the widows, the children and other loved ones of the fallen as they continue to make sense of life without their family hero.
Image courtesy of jesadaphorn at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Hurt people hurt people. It’s a popular quote most people know when referencing painful relationships. Yet, there doesn’t seem to be any catchy quotes for dealing with hurt from that person you trusted. I know because I looked and failed. And it happened at a time I needed it most.
Just two weeks ago I was forced to deal with someone whom I thought was a friend intentionally hurt me all over a misunderstanding. She questioned my character, belittled me and shamed me publicly on social media. And to make matters worse, she made it known that I was no longer welcome at a place I loved. If that isn’t called hurting you intentionally – I don’t know what is. Rather than doing what she did – attack her character and publicly shame her on social media- I did what comes naturally to most Cancer women (or anyone for that matter). I cried. I cried for days wondering how this person I thought would be a life long friend could treat me so poorly. I cried for hours mourning the friendship and chapter of my life that had come to an end. I cried for days wondering where I went wrong and blamed myself for this girl’s callous actions towards me. And as the tears subsided I wondered how I would make the hurt end.
I’d be lying if I said that it still didn’t hurt sometimes. While hurting her just as bad as she hurt me would’ve made me feel better temporarily, I knew I had to find way to deal that had more impact. Luckily, all I had to do was look towards the people I admire most to realize the steps that I needed to take. I only hope the below help you as much as they helped me deal with someone who tried to hurt me intentionally. Continue reading
It’s almost 10:30 am. Have you given thanks as yet? I’m not talking about praying…. although praying in the morning isn’t a bad idea either. But what I’m talking about is giving thanks to those people in your life that help make life worth living and bliss. When was the last time you showed your mom how appreciative of her you are when it wasn’t mother’s day or her birthday? Or how about the last time you gave your doctor a shout out for her amazing bed side manner? No, covering the difference in your copay doesn’t count. Birthday or not, holiday or plain ole Monday, people like to feel appreciated. What better way is there to start the week than by showing your love to someone else just because it’s Monday? And I don’t mean just an “I Love You” text or “Thanks for being you,” email. I’m talking about a physically handwritten letter with your favorite pen on a piece of paper you carefully selected. Continue reading
Make that, I’ve found a clever way to pay my student debt while spending as little of my own money as possible. Call me crazy, but there’s nothing I hate more than seeing my hard earned money go towards another student loan payment. So I’ve made it my goal to pay those bad boys off using means other than my money. And that’s without resorting to sugar daddies, Kickstarter campaigns, street solicitations or lottery winnings. Is it a lofty goal? Yes – especially when I graduated from a private school with lots and lots of student loan debt. But it’s a goal worth chasing. Leave it to me to do the impossible. Yes, I am on my way to paying of my student loans without using my own money.
So how am I doing it? By doing each of the following tasks.
1.Sign up for Gradible
Gradible has been one of the most lucrative methods I’ve used for paying student loans. It’s a website that allows you to do simple online tasks in exchange for student loan payments. Here’s how it works: You create a FREE account and login to see what tasks are available to you. Tasks include things like posting to Craigslist, filling out surveys, writing reviews, and transcribing videos. Once you complete the tasks to the best of your ability, loancreds will be deposited into your Gradible account. After you’ve accrued 100 loancreds which equals $10 you can apply them to your student loans. (Don’t worry, you won’t be working for weeks before earning a measley $10.) Since signing up last August, I’ve accrued more than $1,000 that has been applied towards Sallie Mae, Chase, Citibank and My Great Lakes. I really feel like I’ve hit the holy grail with Gradible! If that isn’t a great way to pay of my student loans without spending my own money I don’t know what is.
Sign up through my referral link and you’ll automatically get $2 deposited into your account. Continue reading
We all know that phrase, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket,” yet we all do it once Monday comes rolling around. And we do it continuously throughout the day and week. Don’t believe me? Did you wake up today exhausted, drag yourself out of bed and convince yourself that you won’t rouse up until you have that cup of coffee? Or did you tell yourself that you can’t possibly have a good day if don’t make out to the gym before work today?
While neither of those quick fixes or paths to happiness are horrible ones, they both involve depending on one outside things to ensure your bliss mood. Sure it seems harmless, but it’s not exactly a good idea. What happens if you are running late and never get the chance to grab your coffee? Are you just gonna allow yourself to be groggy and unproductive all day? And it’s very likely that a previous injury could prevent you from making it to the gym. Does that mean you’ll have the worst day ever?
Just as we know not to put our eggs in one basket when it comes to finances, we shouldn’t do that when it comes to our wellbeing. In a perfect world, you’ll always be able to get the cup of coffee, go for that jog or take that long bubble bath to ease the day. But let’s face it; the world isn’t perfect and things won’t always go our way. It’s up to us be prepared for it, and roll with the punches. Otherwise, we’ll always be depressed.
Rather than separating with those eggs and placing them into that one basket, choose to devour the eggs as you make the choice to be happy and productive for the day. Instead, of putting your happiness in the hands of the barista making your coffee or the gym employees, wake up today and tell yourself, “Today is a great day and it will only get better if I get that special cup of coffee.”
A blissful day is always within your own reach and in your eggs. Never give someone else that power by allowing them to cook the eggs for you.
TERRIfic Quip: It’s up to you find beauty in the ugliest days.
My job is deadline oriented. If work doesn’t get done on time, I don’t get paid. But that doesn’t always stop me from procrastinating when it comes to research and getting stuff done. Sometimes there can be an assignment sitting on my desk for one month but I don’t start working on it until a few days before it’s due. And of course that only stresses me out. It was becoming a big problem. I decided it was time to make a change.
I thrive on little accomplishments. Those little accomplishments motivate me to get the other big things done. So I decided it made sense to make a to do list. Every Sunday night, I sat down at my desk and wrote down the top five to six things I wanted to accomplish the next day. And then every Monday, I would wake up feeling charged and ready to tackle my well planned to-do list… until Rachael Ray came on. Of course, I told myself I’d get back to work once Rachael Ray was over and I did for a few minutes until I hear the ping of my email and decide I have to check my inbox right away. I return to work and then I realize Pinterest is calling my name, read more emails and than get an urgent text message I must respond to at that moment. By the time I finally dedicate my day to getting an assignment done, I realize it’s 2:00 pm and nothing got accomplished.
That happened daily for weeks until I found the Selfcontrol app. Just as the title suggests, this app is all about helping you practice self-control and focus on the things you need to do. And the instructions are simple! All you need to do is input all the websites you visit that distract you when you should be working and set a timer for how long you want to stay away from them. During that time period, the app blocks your access to the website until the time you set is up. I first started by blocking the biggest time suckers like Pinterest, Twitter and my favorite shoe sites for 15 minutes during my workday. As silly as it sounds, I was amazed at how much I was able to get done in such a a short amount of time. I’m not gonna lie though. I did have a few indiscretions in which I attempted to visit my trusty Pinterest only to get blocked by the Selfcontrol app. Slowly, but surely I was able to increase the amount of time I blocked certain websites on the Selfcontrol app without feeling withdrawal.
Selfcontrol is an app for Apple products. If you don’t Apple products you can still test your ability to focus by simply setting your own timer for 15 minutes. Refrain from using those time suckers for the set amount of time and begin getting things on your to-do list done. It works just as well!
What things do you do to keep yourself productive?
TERRIfic Quip: There are seven days in the week. Someday isn’t one of them.