Why I See The Glass Half Full

Why I See The Glass Half Full

True leaders look for solutions.
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We have all heard this expression before, and the ensuing debate that occurs when it's brought up. Even when I was trying to figure out what the expression means, the person usually just dove right in to sharing his or her opinion without truly explaining anything.

Recently, a professor explained it to me in the context of being a leader. As a leader, you are always looking at the glass half full. Therefore searching for solutions, instead of looking for problems. Of course acknowledging the problem is the first step to finding a solution, but that does not mean you focus on the problem. This professor actually inspired this article, and reminded me why being optimistic is always a good choice.

If you are still unsure what it means, the basics are that a glass half full is optimistic and a glass half empty is pessimistic. Someone who thinks the glass is half full will focus on the solutions aspect while someone who thinks the glass is half empty will focus on the problems aspect. At least, that's what I understand, but I am no expert.

This debate is also interesting because you can tell a lot about a person by which side they choose. Of course, there is no correct answer, it's just what you believe to be true. As I write this article, I do not want to belittle anyone else's opinions, I just want to provide another perspective to this debate and why I believe the glass is half full.

When I look at nature, art and even people, I think, "How could the glass be half empty?" Sure, all these things have beauty and imperfections, but this combination often makes them more relatable or understandable to us. Oftentimes, the imperfections are what make a sunset, a forest or a painting so beautiful.

When I stand in front of a painting in a museum, the first thought that comes to mind is not, "Oh yes, this painting reminds me of the impending doom that would happen if Donald Trump were elected president."

Instead, I look at the way the painter interacted with his or her subject, the brush strokes, the lighting, the contrast and a deeper meaning behind the painting. The deeper meaning could be related to a world issue, and the mind would be led to think about said problem and its relation to the painting. My point is that the problem is not the first thing to cross your mind.

Even when I talk to people, I try so hard to find a solution to their problems. Just yesterday my friend was worried because she already scheduled her flight home, but the professor explained that she had to turn in the essay in person when a week before the professor had said the class could turn it in via email.

With three days to write the essay while the class has an entire week, I told her to contact someone in student affairs and they could help work out another solution. See, while I could have expressed frustration, I instead chose to give her a possible solution to make the situation better.

As students, we face challenges every day, but these challenges and obstacles should not deter you from seeing the world through the eyes of an optimist. I see the glass half full, and I hope this article gave you some insight as to why I see it that way. The question still remains, is the glass half empty or half full? I'll let you decide.

Cover Image Credit: http://bit.ly/1YOUlJx

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5 Perks Of Having A Long-Distance Best Friend

The best kind of long-distance relationship.
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Sometimes, people get annoyed when girls refer to multiple people as their "best friend," but they don't understand. We have different types of best friends. There's the going out together best friend, the see each other everyday best friend and the constant, low maintenance best friend.

While I'm lucky enough to have two out of the three at the same school as me, my "low maintenance" best friend goes to college six hours from Baton Rouge.

This type of friend is special because no matter how long you go without talking or seeing each other, you're always insanely close. Even though I miss her daily, having a long-distance best friend has its perks. Here are just a few of them...

1. Getting to see each other is a special event.

Sometimes when you see someone all the time, you take that person and their friendship for granted. When you don't get to see one of your favorite people very often, the times when you're together are truly appreciated.

2. You always have someone to give unbiased advice.

This person knows you best, but they probably don't know the people you're telling them about, so they can give you better advice than anyone else.

3. You always have someone to text and FaceTime.

While there may be hundreds of miles between you, they're also just a phone call away. You know they'll always be there for you even when they can't physically be there.

4. You can plan fun trips to visit each other.

When you can visit each other, you get to meet the people you've heard so much about and experience all the places they love. You get to have your own college experience and, sometimes, theirs, too.

5. You know they will always be a part of your life.

If you can survive going to school in different states, you've both proven that your friendship will last forever. You both care enough to make time for the other in the midst of exams, social events, and homework.

The long-distance best friend is a forever friend. While I wish I could see mine more, I wouldn't trade her for anything.

Cover Image Credit: Just For Laughs-Chicago

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The Disrespectful Nature Of My Generation Needs To Stop

Why choosing phone games over a Holocaust survivor was my breaking point.

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While many students that attended Holocaust survivor Hershel Greenblat's talk were rightfully attentive, I noticed, out of the corner of my eye, a few outlier students tapping away on their phones. They were minute movements, but inappropriate nonetheless.

Immediately I became infuriated. How, I thought, fuming, did my generation become so blithely unaware to the point where we could not proffer basic respect to a survivor of one of the most horrific events in human history?

Perhaps the students were just texting their parents, telling them that the event would run a bit long. 10 minutes later, my eyes diverted from Greenblat back to the students. They were still on their phones. This time, I could see the screens being held horizontally—indicating a game or a show was being played. I wanted to get up, smack the distractions out of their hands, and ask them why they thought what they were doing was more important than a Holocaust speaker.

I will not waste any more time writing about the disrespectful few. Because they could not give Greenblat the time of their day, I will not give them mine. Instead, I want to focus on a massive trend my generation has mistakenly indulged ourselves in.

The Greenblat incident is only an example of this phenomenon I find so confusing. From young, it was instilled in me, probably via Chinese tradition, that elders should be respected. It is a title only revoked when unacceptable behavior allows it to be, and is otherwise maintained. I understand that not everybody comes from a background where respect is automatically granted to people. And I see that side of the story.

Why does age automatically warrant respect? It is the fact that they have made it this far, and have interesting stories to tell. There are exceptions, perhaps more than there are inclusions.

But this fact can be determined by the simple act of offering an elderly person your seat on public transportation. Sure, it can be for their health, but within that simple act is a meaningful sacrifice for somebody who has experienced more than you.

Age aside, at Greenblat's talk, majority of the disrespect shown might not have been agist. Instead, it could have been the behavior students just there for the check-in check-out extra credit that multiple classes and clubs were offering. While my teachers who advertised the event stressed the importance of attendance not just for the academic boost, but for the experience, I knew that some of the more distracted students there must have been those selfish, ignorant, solely academic driven cockalorums.

I stay hopeful because majority of my classmates were attentive. We knew to put aside our Chromebooks, regardless of note-taking, and simply listen to what Greenblat had to offer.

It would be wrong to label my generation as entitled— that's a misnomer for the generation before. We are still wavering between the line of automatic respect and earned respect, but we need to set a line for people whom we know the stories of. Especially a Holocaust survivor.

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