Advice from the (Peer) Advisors: Self-Care in Quarantine

Check out the following self-care tips from Peer Advisor Sydni!

UHPers, we’re living in some very unnerving times. Quarantining at home sure wasn’t how I planned on spending the next few weeks, and I’m pretty certain you might feel the same way, but as a peer advisor and resident mom-friend, I want to make sure that the rest of your semester goes as smoothly as possible. Taking care of yourself both mentally and physically is of utmost importance right now, so here are a few socially-responsible ways to maintain normalcy in the abnormality that is the world at the moment:

Set an alarm every morning

We unfortunately just gained the ability to sleep literally all the time, it’s in our best interest to get up at a ~normal~ hour during the week. Even if your classes are continuing asynchronously or your morning LSPA is no longer running (pun fully intended), waking up every morning at the same time is going to create a routine that will help to transform home-life-mode into academic mode. Sleep is still important, but getting too many ZZZs can begin to throw off your motivation or harm your mental health in the long run. Sleep in on the weekends, but the sooner your semester online starts to resemble your school life, the better.

Netflix Party (Who doesn’t love a good party?)

Missing movie nights with West floor 2 or in the townhouse? Wishing you could hang out with your friends in a safe, socially responsible way? Look no further than Netflix Party. This Chrome extension may be my new favorite thing, period. Have all of your friends download it, pick a movie or tv show, and send them the link Netflix Party generates. Not only will your movie/show be synchronized, but the chatroom sidebar allows you to make all the same jokes you would make at a movie night in Foggy Bottom. Happy watching!

Take a walk

I know this is every mother’s advice right now, but hear me out. As a huge dork that still plays Pokemon Go, walking around my neighborhood for a half-hour not only gives me an excuse to hatch eggs and catch whatever Pokemon may be nearby but also the opportunity to clear my head. Being at home with family might be nice for some time, but having some alone time to get some air, try to process whatever bit of Platonic wisdom Origins teaches, or just to have a change of scenery can be really beneficial to your wellbeing. Even if you’re going outside to sit and read a book or learn a new TikTok dance, getting out in this CDC-approved way can make a world of a difference.

Continue to meet with professors, academic advisors, and your peer advisor

Just because we’re not physically at GW doesn’t mean your professors, academic advisors, and your peer advisor aren’t here for you. Like our love of the Hippo mascot, the support these individuals provide is unconditional! Professors are still hosting office hours and your UHP academic and peer advisors are more than happy to schedule a video call to talk through schedules for next semester, new grading policies, or any other concern that comes to mind. One of my favorite parts of the UHP, if not my favorite part, is the power of the community we have; no one here is going to let you struggle in any way, especially not now. Continuing the semester online presents a unique set of challenges and worries, but as the cast of High School Musical once said, we’re all in this together. 

Intellectual omnivores, we have your backs now more than ever. In unprecedented times we must continue to keep ourselves and our loved ones as happy and as healthy as we can. Continue to check in on one another, continue to ask for help if and when you need it, and continue to have hope. Raising high is what GW does best, so keep raising your head high and stay positive, focused, and healthy. We’re here for you.

Advice from the (Peer) Advisors: “Silver linings — Smiling in the Face of a Pandemic”

 

Check out the following refreshing perspective from UHP Peer Advisor Nicky Cacchione!

72 hours ago, I was sitting in Buenos Aires, Argentina about 5,000 miles from our beautiful Foggy Bottom campus. I had just been on “vacation” (lol all of an abroad semester feels like a vacation… but just go with it) in the province of Salta in Argentina and had seen Las Salinas Grandes, which are these incredible salt flats (seriously look up some pictures it’s nuts!), but all of a sudden, I found my semester abroad turned upside down. Now, I find myself writing this blog, after 24 hours of straight travel, in a friend’s apartment here in DC. To say this isn’t how I expected things to turn out is an understatement, and I know I speak for a lot of people when saying that sentiment probably resonates with you all. However, in the face of all of this uncertainty, tragedy, anger, sadness, and confusion – I want to implore the UHP community to do something that seems almost too hard to do right now: find the silver linings.

I think for all of us, these are incredibly stressful times. Personally, I have no permanent housing until my lease starts in mid-June, I am out thousands in planned personal travel, I can’t see relatives in fear of spreading the virus, I was thrown back into a culture I didn’t think I’d experience for another 50+ days, I had to abruptly say goodbye to newfound friends abroad, and the GW I was forced to come back to is almost completely desolate. To be honest, I can’t, and don’t even feel bad for myself in all of this. There are people dying, losing their jobs, and losing their homes. There are high school and college graduating classes of 2020 that aren’t sure if they will get a proper commencement, and are now positive it won’t be when it was expected to be. There are even other students like myself, who were abroad, who had only been in their respective locations since the first week of March. No matter how bad, or comparatively “okay” your situations are to any of these people, I think now, of all the times in the world, it is time to stay positive and take comfort in the small things.

For me, the first silver lining was reaching out to my business fraternity pleading with someone to let me crash at their place, not expecting anything of it, only to be received with 8 text messages from different people, some who I barely am close with, saying that I could use their apartments. The next was a 6-hour flight home from Panama with a friend that I had wanted to get to know better on my program, we talked the whole way. The others have included unexpected reunions with my best friends here at GW who I didn’t expect to see until May at the earliest, monument runs instead of crowded gyms runs in Buenos Aires, and support of a GW community on my return from abroad (thanks for the free toilet paper guys, I didn’t realize how hard it’d be to find some).

For all of us, it can be the fact that we are blessed with technology. We have the ability to keep in touch with all of our friends through this fiasco via facetime or video games or whatever platform you choose. Or it could be that some of you get to see your families earlier than expected – hold them close even if they get on your nerves, because family is forever. More trivially, maybe you were not having the best semester academically; well now you can choose to take that tough UHP class pass/fail and it won’t affect your GPA. Moreover, do you know how many tv shows and movies and books we are all about to get through? Choose one with a friend and call them about it after every few episodes (if anyone still needs to watch the Marvel Universe movies, your boi is making his way through those as we speak). Regardless of what it is, there are silver linings to every situation: yes, even COVID-19. The process to find them isn’t easy, and they aren’t going to fix the problems that the world has right now at all, but if there is one thing I learned from being abroad in Buenos Aires, it’s to smile in the face of uncertainty, and learn to relax because a lot of things just aren’t in our control. On the contrary, what is always in our control is what we do to try to make ourselves happy.

So UHP, I’m happy/sad (great Addams Family reference right here if any of you get it I already love you) to be back so soon with you all – keep lifting each other up on social media and posting pictures and workout routines because you are all gorgeous and strong, keep drawing fruits and veggies and tagging your friends, and keep on finding the things throughout this that are going to make you happy.

I hope to see you all soon – stay safe and healthy!

Much love,

Nicky Cacchione

Advice from the (Peer) Advisors: Humanities Research and Wisdom from the Creative Writing Department

Check out the following post from Peer Advisor Chrissy House (CCAS ’20)!

Photo of Peer Advisor Chrissy

I’ve spent the last four years facing the infamous “exchange of glances” when I tell people I’m majoring in Creative Writing and English, the glance which means, “Ah, another unemployed English major will soon be released into the world.” And though I have long fallen victim to those glances and often worried for my future, I have an offer of employment for after graduation: an employed English major soon to be released into the world. As the picture I chose to accompany this post signifies, there are some doors you might not see at first glance, but once you push past the undergrowth and daunting requirements lists, you will find the door open to you. Don’t be discouraged from pursing opportunities for which you feel underqualified, apply and you may be pleasantly surprised.

I found myself in a similar position last year when my major advisor pushed me to apply for the GW Undergraduate Research Fellowship. I felt unqualified to pursue research in a sea of SEAS students—what does humanities research even entail?—but decided, what the heck, I’ll apply. I continued to feel unsure of myself as I chose a topic and wrote my research proposal. A section of the application asked about my previous research experience, a field in which I continued to feel underqualified. I’d done an extensive research project in high school on utilizing native pollinators in the face of dwindling honey bee populations, but that had been scientific research, and since coming to college, my only research had been research papers for German history and literature classes, which consisted of reading books and journal articles.

My major advisor and faculty mentor read five different drafts of my application until we were all satisfied. Subtle plug here for utilizing GW staff! I got more excited about the project as we discussed different directions my research could take—beyond just reading books and journal articles, my research proposal included taking advantage of my semester abroad in Germany to further my research on playwright Friedrich Schiller by attending modern productions of his plays and visiting museums and Schiller cultural sites in Germany. And as I got more excited about the project, I began to look at how my past experiences could benefit my application, instead of just seeing how few experiences I’d had. My research in high school prepared me to identify experts and reliable sources, taught me professional email skills for contacting experts in the field, and gave me practice in preparing for and conducting interviews with professionals. Additionally, my prior experiences required me to hone presentation skills that would benefit me in preparation for GW Research Days. My German papers here at GW had already exposed me to German music and cinema, so I wasn’t entering the theater sphere completely ignorant of German culture.

The conclusion of the fellowship saga, as I’m sure you guessed, is a positive one: I received the GW Undergraduate Research Fellowship. I travelled all over Germany seeing plays and visiting museums, an experience I likely wouldn’t have had without the fellowship. I continued my research upon returning to GW and transitioned the fellowship into my Senior Thesis.

What I’m trying to say here is don’t sell yourself short. Even if you feel underqualified, apply for that internship, fellowship, or job; don’t be afraid to take a chance on yourself. Find the strengths in your experiences that will make you a better candidate and highlight them. Believe in yourself. If this English major can get a job, so can you.

Advice from the Peer Advisors: DC’s Best Bookstores

Check out the following DC bookstore tips from UHP Peer Advisor Chloe Wagner!

UHPers love books, so here is my rundown of the best bookstores in DC (both New and Used) so you can find your next favorite pick. 

Capitol Hill Books — Located in Eastern Market, Capitol Hill Books has a wide range of used books and records. The small local shop keeps book foreign language books in the restroom, but it has quite an ~aesthetic~ and has a huge range of history/political books for the poli sci majors among us.

Politics and Prose — You’ve probably heard of this one before because it is a staple among Washingtonians and anyone who worked under the Obama administration. Other than the amazing authors who speak at their venues across town (I’ve seen Pete Buttigieg and Ta-Nehisis Coates there recently), they also have a remarkable selection of social science, African American literature and feminist books for you to dive into.

Second Story Books — Located in Dupont Circle, Second Story has lots of really cool vintage books and maps. The highlight of this store is their fantastic $1 and $2 sales on everything from short stories to cooking books and travel guides on the sidewalk outside.

Potter’s House — Potter’s House is my personal favorite where I could spend an entire day. This nonprofit bookstore, cafe and community event space has everything a college student needs: coffee, baked goods and a wonderful selection of social justice books. In addition, all of their proceeds go back to the Adams-Morgan neighborhood and the organization’s community-centered programming!

Idle Time Books — Another Adams-Morgan staple. I found a book of satirical cartoons about the Arab-Israeli Conflict from 1967 here, and it’s one of my most prized possessions. They have a great poetry selection and lots of fun postcards. 

Advice from The (Peer) Advisors: Doing Homework Is a Skill?

Image of Peer Advisor Gwen Umbach

Check out the following study tips from Senior Peer Advisor Gwen Umbach (CCAS ’20)!

On the second day of this semester, the slam of my apartment door startled me from a social media stupor yet again, to see my homework spread around me, long since abandoned. I hadn’t intended to spend thirty minutes checking my notifications, I actually wanted to get ahead on my work this time.

UHP students are notorious even within GW for doing lots of things at once, and for me one of the biggest challenges of college has been keeping myself focused enough to finish all those things. Though it’s always a struggle, this semester I’ve finally managed to implement some of the great advice I’ve gotten over the years, and I want to share a of the few things that have actually helped me not only start my work, but finish it.

As the brilliant Ben Faulkner pointed out to me, not all homework is created equal, and choosing what to work on first helps maximize time. Whether you’re a morning person, or one who only does homework when it’s dark out, knowing what time of day you focus best (not just when you’re the most
panicked) helps manage those assignments that require the most brainpower. Similarly, when I have lots of assignments to do in a night, working from hardest to easiest, or giving myself easy work between the hard assignments, has helped make my brainpower last much longer than it used to.

The second and the biggest change I made to my work habits was defining where I work. In high school, I always studied at home, and when I started college I continued that without any real thought, but over time it has become apparent that I am terrible at concentrating in my own home. After trying most places on campus, I have finally settled on the DC Public Library as my place for more intensive homework. For easier or less pressing work, I choose a different location—maintaining the sanctity of
the library as a hard-work-only zone has helped me stay on task when it matters the most. Regardless of what the best place is for you, finding it and committing to it makes a big difference.

The last, and hardest, piece of making a work schedule, has been the actual ‘schedule’ part: deciding when to work. This is the advice that I heard repeatedly from professors and advisors, and failed repeatedly to put into place: Block off time for homework, and if anyone asks you to hang out during those times, say you’re busy. In order to stay focused, not just during one afternoon but in the long term, consistency is key. That means tricking your brain into thinking that you absolutely have to sit down and work, even though there is nobody forcing you to follow through. This is a big adjustment to make from high school, where parents, teachers, and coaches oversaw most of our activities and knew if we skipped out on something. And it’s even harder when you start long-term projects like an honors thesis, that might require a lot of self-discipline. Last semester, I utterly failed at this. I ditched my scheduled work hours for activities with friends, campus events, and even peer advisor meetings. Now, though, I’m holding to that schedule (so far), and it has made a huge difference in the amount of work I get done.

It is both frustrating and heartening to realize that now, as I’m about to leave GW, I have finally discovered some strategies for working and studying that I can actually stick to. As useful as this would have been four years ago, it’s remarkable to think about how far my habits have evolved from where I was in my first year. I’ve finally accepted the reality that study habits are a skill to be practiced, and despite the many question marks in my future as a soon-to-be-graduated senior, I’m starting to trust that as time goes on, I will continue to improve at the skills that I’ve gotten a grasp on in college. Even when I still find myself hopelessly distracted, it’s comforting to know that if I’ve come this far, I can get even better in the years to come.

#HonorsProblems: How to Ace Finals and Finally Relax

Peer Advisor Daniel Kassl in front of some cherry blossoms

Be not stressed about finals, dear UHPers! Heed the wise words of Peer Advisor Daniel to get you through this challenging season.

Well, here we are again. For some reason, finals season just keeps coming around at the end of each semester. Someone should really do something about that. Nonetheless, we now confront four, five, or sometimes even six final exams that disproportionately affect semester grades, challenging us to recall all sorts of random, seemingly useless information from lectures (including, often times, anecdotal vignettes during which the class fell asleep) to be employed during these long blocks of exams.

That’s one way to look at it, at least. One thing’s for sure: finals are tough. In high school, my finals were only nominally final. Rather, by the end of the semester, we all knew our grades save for those folks who aced or bombed what were called our final exams. At any university, though, we’re pressed to comprehensively demonstrate our knowledge and understanding that we acquired throughout the long semester to prove that we have mastered material. That’s quite scary, and foreign to many first-year students here at GW.

The first step in succeeding during this finals season is establishing some sort of studying regime that works for you, which includes what time of day you study, where you study (whether in Gelman, your bedroom, etc.), how you allocate time to different courses, and most importantly (believe me), how you’ll take breaks. This isn’t to say that you need a binding, notarized document with a study plan on it—even though that would probably do the trick—but rather that you should visualize some plan to which you can hold yourself accountable.

If you’re like me, studying in the morning is a non-starter, studying in Gelman cubicles causes you anxiety, and taking breaks can often interrupt your flow of thoughts. So, figure out a routine that works for you if you haven’t already, and take initiative to adhere to it. And for God’s sake—take a break and reward yourself for working so hard once in a while.

The final step involves understanding that a final exam is, in fact, final. I cannot adequately explain the frustration I’ve had five minutes after leaving an exam when I remember that I made a mistake—and now there’s nothing I can do about it. But that’s also the beauty of it—there’s nothing I can do about it! You shouldn’t worry about what you can’t control, and unless you’ve mastered telekinesis (in which case we should chat) you cannot change what you wrote in your final paper or on your exam.

At the end of the day, you’re an Honors student and are prone to pre- and post-exam anxiety like this, but I strongly encourage you to take a step back and a deep breath and understand—literally—the finality of final exams. You’ve worked diligently and tirelessly for a semester, and now you should take advantage of the holiday break to catch up on TV shows (I strongly recommend Curb Your Enthusiasm), read a non-academic book (I plan to read The Shining over break), and enjoy having much, much less to do. You deserve it.

My Favorite Tips to Boost Studying Productivity

Worried about the upcoming finals season? Don’t be! Peer Advisor Sarah has some excellent tips for you all to consider as you navigate this horrifying jumble of exams, papers, and presentation!

After enjoying a peaceful few days off for Thanksgiving break, you might come back to school and find yourself drowning in homework. You might have three papers, two finals, and a project due within the next couple of days.

Although it may feel overwhelming, and you might feel tempted to get right back on a train or plane and go back home, you can get everything done. With final season approaching, here are my favorite tips to increase productivity so that you can get the most done with the least amount of time.

  1. Make a schedule. It can be easy to spend all day working on the pretty, color coordinated study guide for your econ exam without starting the paper you have due the same day. Plan out how long you’re going to spend on one task, and plan when you’re going to switch to the next one.
  2. Get rid of the phone! When I’m studying, I usually give my phone to a friend and instruct her not to give it back no matter how much I beg. If that doesn’t work, there are apps to help you stop going on your phone. I use Flora, which lets you plant a garden, but kills the garden if you go on your phone (the guilt works).
  3. Find a spot that works for you. Whether that’s the quiet of Gelman fifth floor, or the more casual atmosphere of SEH, find a study spot where you can focus. I personally like studying next to windows.
  4. Change spots. Don’t stay in the same cubicle for eight hours. Just leaving the building and walking to a new location to study can clear your head and make you feel more awake.
  5. It’s okay to take breaks. If you are spending an entire day studying, you are not being your most productive. Take a break with your friends, or by yourself, and when you go back to Gelman you’ll be able to focus much better.

Preparing for Early Registration? #UHPProblems

Is early registration getting you stressed? Here are a few tips from *cue old man voice* someone who’s done this once or twice in my day.

1) Plan out your classes before November 15!

I know it’s tempting to just focus on all of your current classwork, but preparing for next semester really helps keep you on track with your four-year plan and it means you won’t have to scramble at 6:59 AM the day of registration to get your CRNs ready. Programs like Coursicle are free and have all of your GW classes so you can make a schedule that works for you really easily. I’ve used Coursicle to plan every semester out and it definitely helps relieve any stress you may have about classes being at the same time or who is teaching what!

2) Treat yo self

Sleeping through registration is an easily avoidable situation (and also my worst fear). If that scenario sounds like you, listen up! Even if you’ve only been sleeping 5 hours a night all semester, try to get in at least 7 hours before registration. Waking up super early is a challenge, and if you’re not well-rested you may not hear your alarm… or the second one… or the third. The night before registration, I like to throw on a face mask and watch Netflix just to chill out. Self-care isn’t the same for everyone. Sometimes it’s taking a yoga class, for others it may just be taking a long shower or making some tea. However you practice self-care, make sure you feel your best for November 15th!

3) Ask for help if you need it

Asking for help can be scary, but if you’re feeling uneasy about next semester, your major, or even just what LSPA you should take, you have plenty of resources at the UHP ready to be there for you. Your Peer Advisors are here for this exact reason and could be a great source of student knowledge on what professors to take and what classes to avoid. Ben and Brianna are also here for you. It’s literally their job to help guide you through your time at GW and they have a wealth of advice just waiting to be used. Making an online appointment with them or emailing your Peer Advisor takes no time and could make a difference in your registration experience.

With that all said, good luck to everyone on November 15th at 7 AM for registration and Raise High!

#HonorsProblems: Navigating The Impostor-Syndrome Horror of Honors Classroom Discussion

Peer Advisor Natalie Stands in front of a pillar

Academic terror.  Sheer intimidation.  My first day of Origins, I considered dropping out of the University Honors Program.  Was I smart enough to be here? Could I get high enough grades? Could I contribute thoughtfully to discussion? These were the doubts rushing through my mind.  

I was surrounded by brilliant peers discussing their desire to be the next generation of philosophers.  The professor asked weighty philosophical questions, and the students had profound thoughts on modernity, philosophy, and society.  

I had never read an original philosophical text in my life.  

Though only a few semesters ago, I was misguided in my intimidation.  After becoming more immersed in the UHP community, I am now able to recognize the importance of self-reflection rather than comparison.

Chances are, I’m not going to be the smartest person in the room, the most well-read, or most well-educated.  But, there is one thing I can control; I can always be the hardest working.

Instead of becoming frustrated with the vast intellect of my peers or their quick grasp of concepts, I focus only on my level of effort. 

By re-centering my focus on personal work ethic, I can curb frustrations that often arise from comparison.  I can’t control the grades I will get on a paper or exam relative to my peers, but if I am confident in the time and work I put into studying, I should be satisfied with the outcome.

This mindset has not only allowed me to succeed in my academics but also in my internships.  Rather than accepting the status-quo of other interns, I prioritize my individual effort. Being proud of my attitude and the work I complete allows me to thrive in a workplace environment. 

Whether in Origins classes or internships, if I’m proud of the effort I invest, I have no other choice than to be content with the result.  As UHP students, it is normal to fret over the brilliance of our peers. But, recognizing that we are all selected as unique and valued members of this community is essential in becoming the best versions of ourselves.

Somehow, I Manage: Figuring Out Life at GW with the Help of Michael Scott

Peer Advisor Michelle offers words of wisdom on managing life and college with a little help from our favorite regional manager of a Pennsylvania, mid-size paper provider, Michael Scott.

With midterm season underway, this high-stress period may induce mini-existential crises. It is around this time when students reflect on how their semester is going. Some may be satisfied and ecstatic with the progress they have made, while others might be thinking “where has the time gone and what in the world have I even done?” To help guide this reflection in a more productive direction, I recruited Michael Scott for his expertise on life. Thankfully, he has a plethora of knowledge to impart on you all. So, here are some quotes from our favorite Dunder Mifflin Regional Manager applied to the context of GW life:

“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. – Wayne Gretzky” – Michael Scott

            This one is pretty self-explanatory. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and try new things! If you always remain in your comfort zone, you might miss out. Note, you might think that I am referring to internships, but I am also referring to experiences in general. The Foggy Bottom bubble is very real. So, I encourage you to gather a group of friends (or go by yourself because solo adventures are also super fun) and visit the other neighborhoods of DC. District Connections or Facebook events are a great way to start your search for the many things happening around DC. Also, asking upperclassmen or professors works too!

Sometimes I’ll start a sentence and I don’t even know where it’s going. I just hope I find it along the way.

            This quote is most emblematic of Honors Origins. Many of you may be intimidated by your Origins professor because they are just so intelligent, and it truly seems like every word out of their mouth is the most profound idea you’ve ever heard. It’s borderline Plato vibes. However, I promise that you will get more out of these discussion-based classes if you, wait for it, participate and discuss. All the professors are understanding and legitimately want to know what your perspective is on the topics. They won’t shoot down your ideas or call you stupid. Instead, they’ll follow up with questions to help you get a better grasp on the concepts and learn how to defend your ideas. It’s a great place to practice your speaking and analytical skills.

I am running away from my responsibilities. And it feels good.

            So, I would suggest not following Michael’s lead and hopping onto a train to escape from everything. I know I went into college thinking I could do it all and flawlessly balance classes, social life, student orgs, an internship, etc. However, being busy in high school is not the same as being busy in college. I too have an issue with overcommitment and am known to run around campus from classes to meetings to events. But it is important to recognize your limitations and learn that it is okay to say no. Be intentional in your activities because putting in just enough effort isn’t fair to that commitment or yourself. You should be fully engaged in the work you do because your time is valuable and should be put towards what you care about.

I-declare-bankruptcy!

            Please budget your GWorld. I know it might seem like you have a lot of money and can afford that $8 Chipotle bowl or $5 Chick-fil-a sandwich, but it will add up. At the end of the first semester my first year, I had a friend who was running low on fund and ate instant oatmeal packets for breakfast, lunch, and dinner for an entire week… To avoid running out at the end of the semester, plan and budget right now by incorporating cooking into your routine or sacrificing that Peet’s/Starbucks coffee. For example, try to utilize resources like the free coffee in the Honors Townhouse (BYOM: bring your own mug).

I understand nothing.

            Ask questions! Don’t be afraid to go to a professor’s office hours when you don’t know what’s going on (but you can still go if you do know what’s happening). They might seem intimidating but they’re here to help you. You’re paying for these classes, so why not get the most bang for your buck and take advantage of that resource? Additionally, you might not even realize you’re confused until you unexpectedly get back an unfavorable grade. Sure, you might think “oh, in high school I only studied minimally,” but study habits from high school aren’t always transferrable to college work. You may have to adjust the way you study and that’s totally normal and acceptable.

And I knew exactly what to do. But in a much more real sense, I had no idea what to do.

Three words: four-year plans. You’ve been tasked with mapping out your next four years here at GW and deciding what potential classes to take. It’s a lofty assignment. You might think that you need to have everything figured out, but you don’t! Sometimes we have no idea what we are doing next and that’s okay. Remember, you’ve only been here for 6 weeks and still have so much time to explore your interests. Stay open minded and take each step, one at a time.

I am dead inside.

            Imagine how tired we are. Midterms are here and you’re getting minimal sleep, your body is essentially pumping coffee, and the dark bags under your eyes make you look like a panda (most likely minus the cuteness factor). Work is stacking up and fall break can’t come sooner. But, even if you think you can hang on until fall break, don’t push off self-care. Please remember to take a break because there is a limit to how much your brain and body can take. Overworking yourself will make you less productive, disorganized, and even more stressed. Plus, it’s flu season and sustained stress without healthy habits increases your likelihood of getting sick. Take time away from your work to do a face mask, go to Helwell, spend time with friends, or whatever you need to de-stress.

Café Disco: Everybody dance now!

It’s never a bad time for a dance party. When you are stressed out and can’t handle reading another word of black text on white paper, pull out your speakers, play some upbeat tunes, and just dance. Get your body moving to recharge, build up that energy, then refocus with a more positive headspace.

Only thing that could make this day better is ice cream.

            Ice cream is the solution to everything. Period. (p.s. everyone should try Jeni’s ice cream)

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