New Year, Old Me

New Year, Old Me

Keepin' it real in 2017.
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I’ve never been one for New Year’s resolutions. When I was a kid, I remember going to a party with my parents. It was the typical cute neighborhood New Year’s party where the kids spent most of the evening running around upstairs. The parents drank champagne downstairs, wore New Year's party hats, and ate beautiful appetizers that I couldn’t yet appreciate. When it came time for the ball to drop and the kids to drink their sparkling white grape juice we all gathered in the host family’s sun room to say our resolutions. I flat-out made up something I now can't remember because—as I've mentioned—I’ve never really been into that kind of thing. I feel that for most of my life I’ve remained the same. I moved a lot and mostly kept the same outlook on life.

Today, I would love to be able to say that I’m going to totally change my lifestyle in 2017, but if I’m being real I’m probably never going to start going to bed before 11 or stop eating chocolate chip cookies at the dining hall. But it’s all about the attitude, right? I really do want to de-stress and take more time for myself. I want to go to yoga multiple times a week and find a workout that I don't completely despise. I want to love myself more and remember not to compare my life to others' lives. I don’t really think I will change all of that in one year. I think it would be a struggle to modify everything that contributes to my unhappiness in just 365 days; making my life a happier one would require a change in the way I look at everything in my life. In addition, I want to save my money, have makeup-free days (and feel good about it) and just lead an overall healthier life.

Sometimes, I look back and think about all the progress I've made over the years, and I feel good about all of my decisions and experiences— that’s how it’s supposed to be, right? I know I’m supposed to think about the past and be thankful for everything I have, be happy with the college I’m going to, cherish this moment I've made it to and be thankful for all of the times I’ve survived. But, looking back on my 18 years, I think I’m blissfully blinded by all of the happy times, and I’m really fine with not focusing on the bad. I think maintaining that kind of outlook on life is the best resolution I could ever make. So forget about “new year, new me.” How about a new year with the same cool, rocking, great, fabulous, positive person I’ve always been— despite a few bumps along the way?

Cover Image Credit: Lindsey Ocock

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14 Fraternity Guy Gifts Ideas, Since He Already Has Enough Beer

Frat boys are a species of their own and here are some exciting gifts they will be ecstatic to receive!

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What more do frat boys love than alcohol, partying, and just acting stupid? Here are some gifts that help fulfill all of those needs for the frat boy in your life!

1. Beer holster belt

Whats better than one beer? Six beers! This fashionable camouflage accessory can be used for tailgates, beach days, formals and everything in between.

Price: $8.49

2. Phone juul holder 

You know those cardholders everyone sticks on the back of their phones? Well, now a Juul holder for your phone is on the market! This will save your favorite frat boy from ever again losing his Juul!

Price: $10.98

3. Animal house poster 

This Animal House poster is a classic staple for any frat boy. This poster will compliment any frat house decor or lack thereof.

Price: $1.95

4. The American Fraternity book

Does the frat boy in your life need a good read for Thanksgiving or winter break? Look no farther, this will certainly keep his attention and give him a history lesson on American fraternity heritage and tradition.

Price: $28.46

5. Beer pong socks 

These snazzy socks featuring beer pong will be loved by any frat boy. As for the way to any frat boy's heart may, in fact, be beer pong.

Price: $12.00

6. Condom case

This condom carrying case will not only protect condoms from damage but also make frat boys more inclined to practice safe sex, which is a win-win situation!

Price: $9.99

7. Frat house candle

Ahhh yes, who does not like the smell of stale beer in a dark, musty frat house basement? Frat boys can make their apartment or bedroom back home smell like their favorite place with the help of this candle.

Price: $16.99

8. "Frat" sticker

Frat boys always need to make sure everyone around them knows just how "fratty" they are. This versatile stick can go on a laptop, car, water bottle, or practically anywhere their little hearts desire.

Price: $6.50

9. Natty Light t-shirt 

Even I will admit that this shirt is pretty cool. The frat boy in your life will wear this shirt at every possible moment, it is just that cool!

Price: $38.76-$41.11

10. Natty light fanny pack 

This fanny pack can absolutely be rocked by any frat boy. The built-in koozie adds a nice touch.

Price: $21.85

11. Bud Light Neon Beer Sign 

A neon beer sign will be the perfect addition to any frat boys bedroom.

Price: $79.99

12. Beer Opener

Although most frat boys' go to beers come in cans, this bottle opener will be useful for those special occasions when they buy nicer bottled beers.

Price: $7.99

13. Frat House Dr. Sign

Price: $13.99

Forget stealing random street signs, with this gift frat boys no longer have to do so.

14. Beer Lights 

Lights are an essential for any party and these will surely light up even the lamest parties.

Price: $17.19

Please note that prices are accurate and items in stock as of the time of publication. As an Amazon Associate, Odyssey may earn a portion of qualifying sales.

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11 Ways To Calm Your Seasonal Depression Before It Gets Out Of Hand

7. Treat yo' self...to a nap.

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It is about that time of the year when everyone is feeling sad and stressed. This can be caused by the changing of the weather, too much academic pressure as exams press nearer, and many other reasons. Everyone is affected differently and show their problems differently, but it is still a concern.

I am here to offer some words of advice to anyone who may be struggling with something in their own lives. If something applies to you, take the words I present and see how you can act on them. You never know what may speak to you in your time of struggle and stress.

Do not worry because almost everyone else is going through something as well. They may not have as dramatic of situations as yours, but at least know you are not doing this all alone.

1. Dress warmer! 

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Dress warmer with extra jackets, gloves, and a hat whenever you go outside. Even if it is only for a few minutes in-between buildings, make sure you keep warm and protected. If you do not own winter clothing, now is the time to invest in some before it becomes too late.

2. Take care of your health! 

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Keep drinking lots of water and taking lots of Vitamins. The best way to fight the flu is to try to get extra sleep whenever you can. That means you should take more naps and try to get to bed a little earlier. You do not want to get sicker than you already are, trust me.

3. Call your family...

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Maybe it is time to finally give them a call whether it be for a few minutes or an hour long video chat. Even just seeing their faces over the phone may be enough for you. It might also be that time in the school to head back home if you are able to and see them in person. I am sure they would really appreciate that surprise especially if you normally do not visit.

4. Open up to your friends! 

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Turn to the people around you who genuinely care about you. They will be able to cheer you up or at least will try to make you feel better. Start doing activities that you enjoy and that make you happier. Overall, if your attitude is positive, you will feel less sad and will be a more fun person to be around. No one likes to be surrounded by gloomy people.

5. Actually do your homework...

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Now is not the time in the semester to start to slack off on all your big projects and essays. This is the best time to actually work on them, so now you have to set up a plan that works for you. You know how you can succeed. Make a plan, and stick to it!

6. Set up an appointment with your advisor! 

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Maybe you need to try talking to an adviser at your school who can actually help. Chances are they know a fair amount about the classes you are taking and how to help you succeed. You do not have to feel overwhelmed because there are people who want to help. Turn to some people in your classes and see if they understand what they are doing at all before you start to freak out.

7. Treat yo' self...to a nap. 

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In college this is almost bound to happen. My best advice is that if you can go to bed at a reasonable time, try to go to bed. If you ever have a moment where you know you are not doing anything, take a nap. Frequent short naps can actually help you, so you may as well try to fit some into your daily routine especially if getting 4-5 hours a night of sleep seems to be your average.

8. Go DO something! 

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Go do something with people just to get yourself out there more. Ask your roommate to go get coffee with you. Ask that guy who sits in front of you to see a movie with you. Do whatever you want to do and invite others along. There are always going to be people who will want to join you; you just might have to ask around to figure it out.

9. Watch some scary movies! 

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Spooky season will be back around before you know it. It will still live on in spirit, but just know other seasons are coming around anyway. If you are really feeling nostalgic, watch some scary movies with some friends on a Friday night just to remember all the good spooky times.

10. Break out the Christmas music! 

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The season I look forward to most of all is just around the corner. Soon enough all the radio stations will be playing carols, all the stores will have trees scattered around the entrances, and cars will be driving slowly through neighborhoods just to look at all the lights on each house. It will be here before you know it, so just always be ready.

11. Look forward to Christmas break!

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This is closer than you may realize, so just hang in there for these last few weeks. You will finally be able to relax and not have to think about school or exams. First you have to get to the end of the semester, so just stay focused on exams for now. The fun will come later.

No matter what you may be struggling with, you are not alone this cold season of problems. Find those people around you who will be able to help you the most. You got this!!

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