Don't Forget About Yourself

Don't Forget About Yourself

A reminder to self-care while living the lifestyle of an undergraduate student
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All college students can relate to the incessant papers, studying, and career preparation. Life without a planner seems near impossible, and if you want to submit your thesis by the deadline, it looks like ramen noodles is your dinner… Again.

Undergraduate students undergo an enormous amount of stress. After having to choose a major at a mere age of eighteen, you are tackled with an enormous amount of work and responsibility. We then often sink into tunnel vision where all we eat, sleep, and breathe are deadlines and perfectionism.

You wakeup after only receiving five or six hours of sleep to be hit with seven emails from different Professors explaining how the work you have already started, is now changing. You then hand in your paper for your first class in exchange for the next assignment, that just so happens to be due the same day both your thesis and business presentation is. You promised your best friend you would go to dinner as you’ve been neglecting your relationship so all of this will probably be getting done when the sun starts to rise.

You think to yourself this might not be so bad as you should have at least four hours a day for the next two days to work on it, and then you remember the club you’re in is having an event you have to help host AND you’re still behind on applying for jobs. That debate of getting a third coffee or not is suddenly null, as a fourth and fifth seem unavoidable. Everyone is continuously telling you that you shouldn’t drink so much coffee so maybe next week you can give that a go.

You finally make it home just to be asked by your parents what you’ve actually been accomplishing the past couple weeks because your room is a mess and your laundry might just take a walk downstairs by itself. You feel pretty discouraged that they don’t see all of the hard work you put in, but this feeling has to move on quickly in order for you to focus on that assignment the non-profit you volunteer for sent you.

Are you getting my drift?

This is only a quarter of what the average student deals with all while trying to maintain a sense of self, build relationships, and remain family oriented.

The point is our agenda is often lacking a slot for ourselves. Self-care is probably the most important thing a college student forgets about. We are so focused on meeting deadlines, attending our club meetings, and planning for the future, that we forget how important both our physical and mental health are to us right now.

I know that I personally am always saying that I wish I had time to get a pedicure, or take a hot shower that isn’t rushed, or just sit down with a cup of tea and not have to be looking at a computer screen. Even more troubling is that I often say I don’t even have time to eat an actual meal and so I go without.

My advice to you, as well as myself, is to self-care. And if you don’t have time to self-care, then you really need to self-care. Whether it consists of putting on your favorite face mask, jogging on campus, spending that hour watching your favorite Netflix show, or snuggling up with your dog, you have to do it.

You have to put yourself and your health first because what good are you without it?

Cover Image Credit: Hotel-R

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To The Parent Who Chose Addiction

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

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When I was younger I resented you, I hated every ounce of you, and I used to question why God would give me a parent like you. Not now. Now I see the beauty and the blessings behind having an addict for a parent. If you're reading this, it isn't meant to hurt you, but rather to thank you.

Thank you for choosing your addiction over me.

Throughout my life, you have always chosen the addiction over my programs, my swim meets or even a simple movie night. You joke about it now or act as if I never questioned if you would wake up the next morning from your pill and alcohol-induced sleep, but I thank you for this. I thank you because I gained a relationship with God. The amount of time I spent praying for you strengthened our relationship in ways I could never explain.

SEE ALSO: They're Not Junkies, You're Just Uneducated

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

The amount of hurt and disappointment our family has gone through has brought us closer together. I have a relationship with Nanny and Pop that would never be as strong as it is today if you had been in the picture from day one. That in itself is a blessing.

Thank you for showing me how to love.

From your absence, I have learned how to love unconditionally. I want you to know that even though you weren't here, I love you most of all. No matter the amount of heartbreak, tears, and pain I've felt, you will always be my greatest love.

Thank you for making me strong.

Thank you for leaving and for showing me how to be independent. From you, I have learned that I do not need anyone else to prove to me that I am worthy of being loved. From you, I have learned that life is always hard, but you shouldn't give into the things that make you feel good for a short while, but should search for the real happiness in life.

Most of all, thank you for showing me how to turn my hurt into motivation.

I have learned that the cycle of addiction is not something that will continue into my life. You have hurt me more than anyone, but through that hurt, I have pushed myself to become the best version of myself.

Thank you for choosing the addiction over me because you've made me stronger, wiser, and loving than I ever could've been before.

Cover Image Credit: http://crashingintolove.tumblr.com/post/62246881826/pieffysessanta-tumblr-com

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To The Big-Hearted Girls Who Just Can't Hit The Block Button

Your compassion for others knows no bounds, and that's why you can't seem to let them go.

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Not everyone is worthy of your good heart.

It might be hard to accept that, but it's true. The ones that don't deserve your attention and your care always out themselves. Maybe they take advantage of your kindness, maybe they use you for your love, or maybe they hurt you because they envy some aspect of you or your life. Whatever the case may be, I know you feel the pain from it. I know you are not naive enough to believe that they don't mean the hurtful things they say or that the awful things they put you through are only mere accidents.

Your problem is that you have too big of a heart. You love giving second chances and when they screw that chance up as well, you just can't help yourself from giving them a third, a fourth, or a fifth. Far too easily you are swept up in this cycle of forgiving and forgetting, only to have it blow up in your face time and time again.

You know better.

How many times have you sworn you wouldn't help them again, that it was the last time you'd speak to them, only to snatch up your phone the second you see their name pop up across the screen? How often have you cried over someone who only wanted to be a part of your life when they needed something from you?

Stop giving your all to people that don't care.

Trust me, I know it's easier said than done. It's a difficult habit to break, but once you do you are completely and utterly free from the toxicity. If you're looking for a sign to block that boy who has done nothing but break your heart, or if you were waiting for your cue to finally end that friendship that does nothing but make you feel small, here it is.

Unfortunately, not everyone is going to treat you with the love and respect that you so freely give. Most of the time the people that treat you like crap are just crappy people. It's not your responsibility to save every troubled soul, and you've probably learned by now that not all of them want to be saved.

There's nothing wrong with looking for the good in people, but when they start to drain you of your light you need to have the strength to let them go.

To the girls gifted with hearts too sensitive and ready to burst with compassion, it's OK to cut ties with those who hurt you time and time again. It doesn't mean you've stooped to their level; it doesn't mean you're a bad person. You tried your hardest, but toxic people rarely change their ways. You don't deserve that kind of pain.

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