Thursday, August 21, 2014

Secrets to Success: The First Semester

suc·cess·ful: (adj) accomplishing an aim or purpose. 

     One of the things that our society is categorized by today is how successful a person is. Everyone strives to be successful. Personally, I do not think that success is something that can be ultimately reached. More so, I believe it is something that is only chased.     
     As I have been going through my college career, I have sort of been trying to figure out my definition of success. What is the deciding moment between a moment that is successful and a moment that is not so successful? What are the things that I have been doing that have pointed me to those successful moments? It has taken me a little time, but I think I have a few answers. 
     My success secret is simple. A lot of people think it is more difficult than it actually is (I was one of those people until I really thought about it.) And the big secret is........ if you say you are going to do it, do it.
     Honestly, I wish I had figured these things out when I was just starting college. As said in previous posts, my first year of school was rough. I wasn't challenged as much as I should have been in high school so I thought that just skating through college was the only option. I was wrong and my grades showed that. Granted, they were not awful, but they were just not what I wanted them to be. 
     Sure, I do things last minute. Things get stressful. I may cry. But things get done. If I say I am going to do something, come rain, sleet, wind or snow (most of the time its snow up here in VT), I will do it. To be able to do this, I have some tips that I have figured out. 

ONE: Be on time. All of my friends make fun of me because I am always early to things. If I have class at 12:15, I am on my way to that class by 12. I am not sure why, but I just hate being late. Lateness is probably one of my biggest pet peeves and it honestly pains me to be late to something. I find that sometimes this takes just as much self control as it takes planning. You can plan out your exact route and times to do things, but if you hit that snooze button one time or take a few extra minutes on Pinterest, then all of that planning goes to waste. It is all one big compromise. This applies for almost everything in my life, not only showing up for class or tours, but also for submitting assignments and papers. 

TWO: Keep yourself organized. Sometimes it gets hard. Trust me, I am in no way the most organized person. My room looks like a bomb went off with clothes, makeup, hair products and all of my rugby gear all over the place. But when it comes to big things, I am always organized. If I don't write down when something is due, I will almost always forget. I am a big fan of to-do lists and calendar alerts in my phone. What ever you need to do to keep track of our life, do it! 
I am a HUGE fan of planners. I love planners so much that I actually have 2 of them: one for school work and one for blogs and extracurricular activities. To go a little bit further, I even color code them. I know. I'm weird.
(image)

THREE: Figure out deadlines. This one goes hand in hand with number two, so just stick with me. While somethings spell out deadlines for you (papers, exams, quizzes, projects) other things my not be as clear. I find it 10 times harder to be able to complete things when there isn't a deadline spelled out for me. I always do the classic "I'll do it later" thing. Always always always figure out a date that gives you a reasonable time frame to complete a task and stick to it. 

FOUR: Set Priorities. This is a biggie. If I say I am going to do something, I don't want to disappoint anyone by not completing the task. That means that if I have way too many things on my plate and someone asks me to pick up another I have to tell them "no" straight up. In previous years, I thought saying no was a bad thing, but trust me, it's not. Saying no is one hundred times better than saying yes and then having to back out at the last minute. It is still something that I find really challenging today. I always want to please everyone and I feel like by saying no I am letting them down. Through this I constantly have to remind myself that I am actually preventing myself from letting them down by saying no. 

FIVE: Define. What does success mean to you. You can never be successful until you have a clear idea of what it is. I usually start with my biggest, larger than life goal and work my way from there. When good is good enough, I'm done and accept the fact that it is good enough. I can definitely be grouped into the category of a perfectionist sometimes. I want everything I do to be perfect. But in the end, I just have to get things done. 

What does success mean to you?

Love,
Susanna

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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Forgotten Things that Shouldn't be Forgotten

I am moving into my junior year dorm in a matter of days. WHAT!? Junior year!? WHAT IS THIS NONSENSE. Where have my college years gone?! But for now, that rant is besides the point. I like to think that in my past 2 full years of college I have compiled a list of things that are necessary for dorm life. Sadly, these are things that I often forget to pack. Therefore, I figured I could compile a little list for all of you!

1. Umbrella/Rain Coat/ Wellies: I PROMISE you that you will get use out of these items. We can only wish that classes would get cancelled over a little rain, but I assure you, they do not. Keep these items in your closet because no one wants to sit in class dripping wet.

2. Baby Wipes: You may be like, Susanna, why the heck would I need baby wipes. I had the same thought so don't worry. But let me tell you, these things are a gift from the heaven. They are great for make up wipes, a quick cleaner to dirty surfaces and awesome for a quick hand cleaner. Trust me, you will not be disappointed with a pack of these in your room!

3. Flash Drive: This one seems pretty obvious but I forgot one my freshman and sophomore year. Good one Suze. I now use my flash drive so often that it always have one (or 2) in my backpack at any given time!

4. Dust pan/Vacuum: As much as I hate to admit it, my room gets messy. A dust pan or vacuum is super quick and helps to pick up dirt and other stuff that lurks on your dorm room floor.

5. Portable Speakers: The past two years I have brought portable speakers with me and they have been amazing. They were great for movie nights in our rooms or shower parties with music.Trust me, loud portable speakers will make you a star at school!

6. Air Fresheners: I like things that smell good. It is as simple as that.

7. Water Bottle: At SMC one of the things that you will see constantly are students carrying water bottles. We ALL have water bottles. They are super convenient and help to keep you hydrated.

8. Door Stop: For the first few weeks this is crucial. You may find it super tempting to sit in your room alone and watch KnightFlix by yourself because it is super easy. Keep your door open whenever your are in your room the first week and it will help you to meet all of the people on your floor and make some amazing friends (I Met some of my best friends my first week at school).

Love,
Susanna

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Too Close Cover HERE
^^Listen to this AMAZING cover by one of my teammates and closest friends Lauren (Pointy). I promise you will not be disappointed!!

Monday, July 28, 2014

I'm at Camp

Hey all, sorry for the lack of posts all summer. Very similar to last summer, I am working at the same summer camp and enjoying every minute of it. Currently I am sitting on the office porch during my off time typing this post while looking out over lower field where there is a group doing yoga. The birds are chirping, the grass is green and there is a nice breeze. I cannot believe that currently there are only 3 weeks left for me here and 4 until I head back up to SMC for preseason for rugby. My goodness, I am SO EXCITED to be back at school. But until then, I am here. I again apologize for the lack of posts but I hope all of your summers are going as well as mine. 
Love,
Susanna

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Thursday, June 5, 2014

Living

     It is summer vacation and if you have read my previous blog post (which you should have, but in case you missed it, you can find it HERE) you would know that I have been doing a whole lotta nothing for the past couple of weeks. Today I woke up in my bed and looked down on my floor and realized that I couldn't even see the floor because of all the stuff located there. The difference between today and literally the countless other times I have done that was that today I felt really REALLY angry about it. Passionate anger. I literally sat in my bed and whined, as all normal adults do (note sarcasm). But I soon realized that as an adult* (*I assume being 20 years old makes me an adult, right?) we have to do this stuff all the time.

     As I have realized in the past couple of weeks, I don't want my life to be a monotonous mix of getting up in the morning, brushing my teeth, plopping on the couch, watching reruns of Total Divas (my new obsession), eating some food and then repeating. I NEED TO DO SOMETHING.

     We often queue up our Netflix, DVR, or YouTube all while neglecting to queue up our own lives; the things that matter and that we will actually remember. The process is simple. JUST KIDDING. Its totally not, but don't worry, you can do it, I promise. I guess I cannot give you a solid answer because I am still in the process of defining what it actually feels to BE alive. Not just like the breathing and heart beating stuff, but actually being alive, like I am alive in my own body, ya know, just chillin' on this Earth. I make everything harder than it needs to be. I buy into the crappy infomercials on TV. I get sucked into basically any sale item at Target even if I don't need it. I make things complicated just to add a little excitement to my life. I care way too much about what people think about me.

     Basically, I care too much about getting my life together. If there is anything more overrated than having your life together, then I don't know what is. I care more about my future plans than my plans right now in the moment and care more about how I look in a selfie than having a life that is worth photographing and saving in a picture album to be passed down in years to come.

     I mean, I could just totally forgo all life and live totally off the grid...... HAHAHAHA. No. Not happening. The part that I am struggling with is how to be a "free" human being and live my life freely while also feeling the need to be a functioning member of society.

     How do live the crap out of your life? How do you even know what it feels like to be alive?
    After I sat in my bed whining for quite a while I did what every normal adult would do. I blasted some Iggy Azalea and cleaned my room while I totally ugly danced all over my room while singing into a hair brush. So adult of me, I know. I want there to possibilities and opportunities in my life. I want to create a life that I can be proud of in the future. I am unsure of the type of memories I want or the kind of life I want to create (all I know is that if it includes Channing Tatum, I'm totally game.) All I know is that as I flailed awkwardly around my room I felt alive. Like really alive. And I plan to take advantage of that moment, one ugly dance at a time.

Love,
Susanna

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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Summer Update

     So I have been on summer vacation for about 3 weeks now and I actually have to say that I am sufficiently bored out of my mind. Being home makes me realize how incredibly thankful I am for SMC. There is something so heartwarming in the fact that your friends are seconds (literally) away anytime you possibly need them. 
It is finally beautiful outside!

     My summer has been boring so far. I start work on June 7th so I have had sometime to sit and relax..I  think too much time. Most of the days I find myself waking up late then walking down stairs to sit on the couch for the majority of the day.
( l to r: Me and my friend Kayla)
We got to see all of our friends that were still in high school go off to prom! 

It is officially summer when my dad makes ribs! 
      I've done a bit of reading since I've been home as well. The Fault in Our Stars had me in tears and The Lake of Dead Languages was a great suspenseful book but not the best to read before bed. 
Read The Fault in our Stars. It is literally fantastic! 
     That's all I really have to say other than the fact that I am absolutely ecstatic to start working next week. It will be my second year working at the same summer camp and I am honestly counting down the days until I go back. I promise to write more over the summer, but for now, have a lovely summer!

Love,
Susanna

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Monday, May 5, 2014

Monday Motivation: Farewell

      So the semester is coming to a close. I feel both happy to finally be on a break but sad to say goodbye to this lovely place and friends for a while. This post is mainly towards the graduating seniors that have changed my life in more ways than one. 
     Coming into school last year I was really nervous about making friends and feeling welcome. I found a great group of friends both in my grade but also older than me. It was so sad at the end of last year when I had to say goodbye to them as they finished their final year here at SMC.
     This year is no different if not a little worse. Some of the graduating seniors this year have made my time at SMC truly unbelievable. They have accepted me, welcomed me into their lives and taught me things that I will never be able to repay them for. They are the type of people that I aspire to be someday. They are the type of people that when you are having an off day all they have to do is smile at you and say hello to instantly brighten your mood. They have the ability to make you laugh so hard that you feel like you just did an ab workout. They make you think critically about life and teach you how to see the best in every person. 
     I am going to keep this post short because I am already tearing up writing about it. The worst part about being at SMC is having to say goodbye to people every year. We truly are a family and it is something I am forever grateful for. I have never felt so accepted and loved in my life. Thank you to all of the seniors for taking me under your wings and teaching me things that sitting in lectures and reading text books couldn't. 
     Good luck next year in what ever you have chosen to do. I know that you will all be amazing. I am honored to not only be graduating from the same institution as you all but to also be able to call myself your friend.
 Congrats class of 2014, you will be missed dearly.

Love,
Susanna

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Friday, May 2, 2014

Just Call Me the Energizer Bunny

     
(I know I missed Monday Motivation this week but it is finals week, cut me some slack.)      My sleeping patterns have been horrible lately. All of my work seems to be piling up and it is a mad dash to get it all done before Wednesday of next week when I have to pack everything up and make the trek all the way home. Sometimes, I find it really hard to stay energized during the day while I am trying desperately to get all of my work done. 
     Some mornings I will wake up rested and awake and other times I will be seriously dragging a bit. I am 100% a morning person. I normally go to bed really early and have no problem getting up even if I am exhausted. While last semester I literally felt like I was running on the last drop of energy in my body, this semester I have learned to manage my energy. I am a lot happier because I am able to manage my time and how I feel throughout the day. Believe it, it is a major game changer. Obviously, like any normal human being, some days are better than others. I would say that it is certainly a work in progress, but I think I am starting to finally get the hang of it.

1. Make some delightful choices. Honestly having a lot of energy comes from making good choices. Procrastination (which is a topic that I tackled in a previous post that you can read HERE) drains energy. Lounging around all weekend in your comfy sweats can seem really relaxing at times but then Monday morning creeps up on you way too fast and you feel super sluggish and tired. Ladies and gentlemen, that is energy management at its finest. I am a total advocate for staying up all night and watching Dance Moms but if you have important things to do the next day, you need your sleep.
     Honestly, I have been staying up way too late than I should most nights. I don't even know how I spend that late night time.

2. Coffee and the sweet stuff called sugar. I LOVE COFFEE. I really do. But believe it or not over the past year or so I have really cut back on my caffeine intake. Now I really only have one cup of a coffee a day and maybe a cup of tea. But I feel so much better now. Certainly there are days when one cup of coffee is just not cutting it, but those tend to be days where I made a bad decision the night before (see number one is reference to the Dance Moms marathon.) Even though I have a major sweet tooth and I tend to put a good amount of sugar in my coffee, I do not eat that much sugar during the day. It makes a huge difference so I don't get spikes of energy and then a major crash throughout the day.

3. Bye Bye Bed. I love my bed. I really do. I probably spend way too much time in it between homework, aimless internet browsing and sleeping. I haven't done homework at my desk until a few weeks ago and let me tell you, it makes a world of difference. Now my rule for doing homework is: if I can sleep through an entire night comfortably in the place I am doing homework then I should not be doing homework there.

4. Get Out. Sometimes when I am doing work I can get really frustrated and that is when I just need to get up and move. It can be anything from taking a quick walk down the hall to going on the nature trail behind the 3's. What ever it may be, I just need to move. I find that when I get back to doing homework I am able to concentrate and think clearly.

5. Fill your Belly. Pack your diet with healthy foods that help you feel full for longer periods of time. I tend to eat a lot of protein because it helps to keep me full for long periods of time so that I don't crave sugar and salt (salt is my weakness). Also when I miss a meal it is really not good. I go from being super productive to not being able to do anything. It makes me feel super sluggish and tired. Eating properly, healthy and regularly is really important to stay energized throughout your busy day!

Love,
Susanna

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