Category Archives: Life Hacks

Life: 7 Things To Remember

joyLife.

Such a precious gift, but it is often taken for granted. Or taken too seriously. Or is treated with apathy.  While things won’t always be sunshine and rainbows, it’s important to note that life can be enjoyable, and it all starts with how you approach it.

Here are 7 things to remember about life:

1.) The day you’re born is the only time when you’ll be “perfect.”

Nothing is more true than this! When you’re born, everything is pure: your mind, your body, your spirit, your soul. But in the days to follow, your environment will change that. Fact is, you won’t make it through life unscathed. You’ll get sick, you’ll lose people, you’ll be hurt physically, mentally and emotionally. But you know what? You’ll pick yourself back up and keep going. Everyone does it. And you’ll keep doing it over and over again.

2.) The things you worry most about may never happen.

So stop obsessing over a grand piano that may never fall out of the sky and on top of your head. A shark won’t eat you while you’re swimming in an ocean. You won’t flunk out of college. You won’t accidentally eat a poisonous berry. You don’t have ebola, and for the record, you may never get ebola. Oh, yeah: your car won’t break down in the middle of nowhere, either. And if it does, you’ll be fine.

Relax.

3.) It’s bigger than social media.

I’m not one to record my whole life on social media anyway, but you’ll drive yourself crazy “competing” with your friends to see who is having the most fun, or who has more adventures, or who has more popularity. That stuff doesn’t even matter, and all of these social sites will eventually become obsolete, just like MySpace.

4.) It’s not a competition.

Again, comparing yourself to others will drive you crazy. Everyone’s journey is different, and no one has a clue what the other person’s is about. At the end of the day, the only person you need to compete with is yourself. Yes, out-do yourself each and every day. Progress: be better, do better, act better and love better than you did the day before. Beat your old self.

5.) It’s relatively short.

Don’t waste time on trivial bullshit; it’s not worth it. At odds with someone? Fix that shit. Got something on your chest? Get it off. Have a long-term goal? Keep working until you reach it. Furthermore, forgive yourself for all of your faults, slip-ups and mishaps. What’s the point in regretting stuff when you still have more experiences coming your way? Plus, you’ll miss out on so many memories holding on to useless baggage. Let it go, because before you know it, your time will be up. Then you’ll really have something to regret.

6.) Love makes the world go ’round.

Not cash. Not men. Not women. It’s love that makes everything continue to grow, evolve and recreate. Love is what inspires; from love sprouts positivity and it feels good to live in an optimistic world, right? Even if THE world is full of strife and turmoil, make YOUR world a loving safe haven, and come up with ways to solve the problems you see around you. Keep the good karma going, and you’ll enjoy your life. I promise you.

7.) Life is what you make it.

Nuff said. 

So enjoy life as it is. You have a special, unique journey that is designed specifically for you, and you might as well enjoy it while you can!

Have a good one, y’all.

Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder

I know we’ve all heard this saying before and I’m sure you’re all tired of hearing it, but I just wanted to write a little something to give hope and reassurance to those that may be going through a long distance relationship.  I know from experience that absence really can make the heart grow fonder.  I grew up with my mom constantly going out of the country for work for months at a time and saw my parents’ relationship actually IMPROVE from it.  They fought less, they missed each other more, and their patience improved.  It made them both appreciate each other’s love more and learn the importance of what the other had to say and felt.

So for those of you doubting whether or not it can work between you and your significant other, just know that yes it will get frustrating and you may feel lonely at times, but you also will gain such a deeper appreciation for the other person.  Simple things like the sound of their voice or holding hands will seem like the best things in the world.  Here are a few tips to keep the love alive and the relationship strong:

  1. Have a mutual understanding of what you both want.  Reassuring one another that you have the same amount of love, care about each other equally, and are putting forth the same effort to make the relationship work will really enhance any relationship; especially a long distance one.  Feeling secure and knowing that you are both on the same page is extremely important.
  2. Don’t OVER communicate.  I know you’re probably thinking, “What is this girl talking about?!”, but seriously sometimes less is more.  Just because you don’t see each other doesn’t mean you need to compensate that by talking 24/7.  It will do more harm than good.  Just like when you see someone too often and can start to get super annoyed by their presence, the same goes for if you talk to someone too much.  You may think it is helping, but it is actually hurting the relationship.  Give yourselves a chance to miss each other.
  3. Keep the sexual attraction strong.  Don’t let the spark die or forget what it feels like to kiss and hold each other.  Set a night aside each week for you two to say how much you miss each other in both an emotional and physical way. Flirt a little!
  4. Communicate regularly.  You want to make sure you don’t NOT talk to each other.  Seeing a “good morning” and “good night” text lets the other know they are thinking about them and want to make the effort.  Sending photos is also a good way to remind your lover that you are trying to include them in your life.
  5. Be honest.  Trust will always be one of the most important things to have in order for a relationship to work.  Being in a long distance relationship makes it that much more valuable.  Once you lose trust, the relationship will have a hard time recovering, if it will at all.

I hope these tips help any of you going through a long-distance relationship.  Whether it’s just for a month, 5 months, or for up to a year or more, these should help you maintain a strong trusting relationship.

You’ve Graduated… Now What?

graduate1You did it!

You can finally say that you have a Bachelor’s degree in [enter your major here]. You’ve popped bottles, posted pics on Instagram, you’ve celebrated in every possible way you can think off. But when the confetti has cleared and the balloons are deflated, you’re only left with “now what?” Like, really. Now what?

1.) Create new goals.

I think it’s safe to say that you’ve already accomplished a major goal, and maybe some smaller goals along the way. That said, what are you looking forward to? Do you still want to land your dream job, or do you have different career aspirations? What about your personal goals? Are you looking to eat healthier, exercise more, maintain friendships? Do you want to travel, or invest your time in starting your pet sitting business? Whatever you want to do, set goals for accomplishing them. Make a plan, create a vision board–do whatever you have to do to get started on your new dreams.

2.) Reflect, don’t regret.

Think back on the past four years. You’ve had many ups and downs, but what did you learn from them? Did you realize that you need to make a few changes, let some people go, break some habits? Do you think you need to adopt something, like more positive self-talk? No matter what your college experience has brought to you, use your good and bad experiences to direct you as you move forward in life. You have many more lessons to learn, and if you don’t learn them, they’ll keep repeating themselves. More importantly, don’t regret anything you’ve done; everything happens for a reason.

3.) Find yourself… Again.

People grow. People change. As we change, we find ourselves. The person you are now isn’t the same person that moved into the freshman dorms four years ago. Maybe you thought you knew who you were, but since undergrad is done, your college identity is a thing of the past. So who are you now? Who do you want to be? Where do you want to be? No matter what, be honest with yourself about what you want and what you need. You’ll find your place eventually.

Congratulations to all of the graduates out there! We wish you luck on everything you set out to do, and we sincerely hope that you are granted everything your heart desires.

 

Fuck, I Never Actually Learned Shit…

untitled1It’s finals season, yet again.

College students far and wide are scrambling to look over their notes, make flash cards, re-read their textbooks and pray for a miracle. Finals may actually be a breeze for some, but for others? They trigger the “fuck, I never actually learned shit!” alarm. So what do you do when your final is days away, and you can’t remember ANYTHING you learned throughout the semester?

1.) Calm down.

Honestly, if you’ve been making good grades throughout the semester, you should be fine. Nine times out of 10, all of the info that was included in your assignments and quizzes will be on your final. And even if you end up failing your final exam, it won’t be enough to make you fail the class. You might get bumped down a letter grade, but you’ll be fine.

On the other hand, if your grades are not so good…

2.) Talk to your professor.

I swear, sometimes your performance in the class isn’t as bad as you think. Talk to your professor about your current grade, and ask about the minimum you need to make on the final to pass the class. You might only need a 59 on the final to avoid taking the course again.

But if you need an 89 or better…

3.) CRAM LIKE CRAZY!

Academic professionals advise against this, but regardless, this seemed to work for a lot of my classmates over the years. Get some flash cards, review your study guide (if your professor was nice enough to give you one), re-highlight your notes, re-read the chapters you need and take extra notes, take frequent breaks to avoid a mental break down, and get a classmate to quiz you right before the test starts. Cramming isn’t easy, and it’s taught me to study ahead of time (not really), but you can make it work. I wouldn’t advise doing this for EVERY test, but sometimes life gets in the way and we fall behind. Only use cramming when necessary, not when you “don’t feel like” being on top of your studies.

To all of our readers who are in the mist of this Final Exam storm, we wish you the best of luck. Be sure to eat a well-balanced breakfast, try to get enough sleep the night before and relax. You got this!

5 Reasons Why (Some) College Students Shouldn’t Complain

If you’re a student in college you’re lucky. I don’t think many college students realize just how privileged they actually are. Yes, school can be a pain sometimes, but if you look on the bright side, going to college really isn’t that bad. Here are five reasons why (some) college students shouldn’t complain:

1.) You still live with (or off of) your parents.

Not many people have this luxury, college or not. If your parents are financially supporting you in any capacity, consider yourself blessed. You don’t have any bills to worry about, you don’t have have to worry about food, and you probably don’t even have to work. If you do have a job, your money goes into all of your wants; you never have to budget for your needs.

2.) You get four (or more) years to experiment before you have to settle into a career.

Some people work straight out of high school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but college gives you the opportunity to test and experiment with different skills, and you can also play around with different interests. If there’s anything I learned from my college experience, it’s that you can go in thinking you want to work in one career field, and come out wanting to pursue something else. Similar to how some business majors go to law school instead of getting an MBA.

3.) One word: Discounts

Man, what?! College students get so many discounts, it’s ridiculous. From clothes to insurance, there are so many deals and opportunities for you to save money! After you graduate, it’s a different story…

4.) Party and Bull…

Yes. You actually have more opportunities to party. Back when I was a club promoter, parties would be in full swing from Thursday night to Monday morning. Tuesday morning for a three-day weekend. But anywho, while parties shouldn’t be the main focus of your college career, you have options. I’m not saying that you don’t have options if you don’t go to college, but chances are, if you go to some sort of university, you’ll always have somebody hitting you up with a move.

5.) You actually have the opportunity to go to college.

Some people really don’t have that opportunity, believe it or not. Due to finances, personal obligations or situations beyond their control, they can’t go to college right away. So don’t complain about how much your life sucks because your professor wants you to write a 10-page essay, you have three club meetings, your on-campus job is boring and your parents took away your car until you bring your grades up. Some people can’t complain about those things, even if they wanted to.

Again, if you’re a student in college, you’re lucky. The experience is what you make it, but don’t make room for unnecessary complaints.

Raena, Editor-in-Chief

The Celibacy Vow

Society now and days has shaped the minds of our generation into thinking that having sex is normal, hooking up is okay and you are free to live your life the way you see fit, but what does it say about celibacy? Now don’t get me wrong, it is your life and I do not approve of slut-shaming, but why are the people who decide to control their bodies shamed for their decisions?

In this new accepting culture, you would think that anything you want to do with your body is acceptable, but going against the norm is not.

I’m saying all of this from experience. I recently decided to make a  change and become celibate. In return, this decision greatly improved my spiritual life. I found that if I wanted to continue to improve that lifestyle, I would have to give up my old one. This meant to stop drinking, smoking (hookah and weed), stop going to parties and stop having sex. While doing this, I was replacing the need of partying and drinking with other things in my life like devotionals, church, volunteering and doing things that would positively influence my life rather than hinder it. I found that in doing this, my “friends” took notice. I was no longer invited to parties or even asked to hang out in between classes. My “friends” wanted nothing to do with me as if my new lifestyle choices were contagious. They wanted nothing to do with the “church girl” because I had made the conscious decision to stop doing what everyone else loved and start being dedicated to the one person I do love: God. Of course I tried to include them on this journey with me and some agreed to go to church with me, but after the first time became their last time, I knew it was time to move on. Everyone has different life paths and I just started to find my own.

It sounds sad, but in this loss, I truly gained my own piece of mind and was able to thrive in my spiritual life.

All of this is to say if your celibate, and not just from sex (it can be from anything that society deems normal), then keep doing what you’re doing. You will find that people will not approve of what you’re decisions, but at the end of the day, if you’re doing whats right you will gain so much more freedom and piece of mind. And you will forget you were ever missing something in the first place.

Dreu Davis.

How to Get Rid of a Hickey

tumblr_mwzrv9TY971t0ketjo1_250A hickey, or “love bite,” is essentially a bruise caused by broken blood vessels under soft skin. The blood vessels are broken due to heavy sucking or biting in a particular area. Hickeys are commonly left on the neck, shoulder and chest.

Needless to say, hickeys are left during passionate make-out sessions, or more, and can last anywhere from two days to two weeks. But what if you have a job interview or you’re visiting family within the next 24 hours? Unless you want to explain what you and your mate were doing, here are five ways that you can get rid of a hickey–fast.

1.) Ice it.

If the hickey is still fresh, wrap ice cubes in a small towel and apply the towel to the affected area.

2.) Warm it.

If you decided to let the hickey heal on it’s own, but it’s not healing fast enough, run a towel under warm or hot (not boiling) water, then apply the wet towel to the affected area.

3.) Toothpaste.

Apply toothpaste on the affected area and leave it there for 20 minutes. Then, lightly, scrub the toothpaste off of your skin and immediately try Step 4.

4.) Massage it.

As stated before, hickeys are bruises. This means that the reddish-purple mark on your skin is blood clotting as your blood vessels repair themselves. Massaging the area will encourage blood flow and as the blood starts moving, the affected area will become lighter. You can use your fingers, a lipstick cap or the bottom end of a tooth brush. Be firm, but not rough; you could make the hickey look worse.

5.) Cover it up.

This might be the easiest method, really. If the hickey is on your shoulder or chest, all you have to do is put on a shirt. If you have one on your neck, buy some foundation and apply it over the affected area. If you’re not a fan of make up, use a scarf or wear a turtle neck. You could always put a bandaid over it. If you have long hair, wear it down or pull it into a low, side pony tail to cover up the affected area.

Prevention Tips:

If you’re not too fond of hickeys, be sure to let your partner know BEFORE you start kissing them.

Be mindful of how hard your partner is kissing you; if it’s getting too rough, stop them.

Even if there is no sucking, pressing your lips down really hard on soft skin (i.e. the neck) over an extended period of time can still cause a hickey to form.

If you bruise easily, take special caution. It might not take much action for you to get a mark on your skin.

If at any point you feel a “pinch” in the area you’re being kissed in, your blood vessels just broke. Stop kissing immediately, and tend to the area. You may be able to stop a hickey from appearing if you catch it fast enough.