10 Things We Wish We Knew When We Were College Freshmen
(SPOT.ph) College, they say, is supposedly the best time of your life. You're not bound by a 7-to-5 schedule, you're away from the critical eyes of the nuns and priests (if you came from a Catholic high school), and you actually have some power to choose your major, your professor, and even what you'll have for lunch. It's that time of reckless abandon, freedom, a whole lot of fun. Sure, college is the best, until you surpass the dreaded first few days/weeks/months as a college freshman. Because, let's face it, it was a whole lot of awkward during that transition phase.
We round up a few pro tips and life hacks we wish we knew when we were just doe-eyed freshies/froshies/whatever-your-school-calls-them.
You don't have to attend class on the first day... or the first week.
It's the first day of school and you're up and about by 5 a.m. because you're excited to meet your professor and get your syllabus. It's 8 a.m. and there are just 10 of you in the classroom. By 9 a.m., no professor is in sight. Apparently the first day or the first week is allotted for late enrollments and class adjustments. Use the extra time to make new friends or explore the campus. Or, you know, continue being a couch potato.
Avoid 8 a.m. classes.
No matter how committed you are to waking up early, something will always come up and cause your tardiness. That's just how the world works. (Look up Murphy's Law.) You have to leave room for all-nighters, late night beer runs, or even Monday morning laziness.
Having an allowance is an underrated luxury in life.
TBA isn't a building or a lecture room.
Sometimes, your class schedule will only have TBA written under the Room column. Activities posted on the bulletin board will indicate TBA for the venue. Where the hell is TBA? No, don't ride a jeepney and ask the driver to drop you off at TBA. (This has allegedly happened IRL.) TBA is not a building, a room, or even a secret passageway. It just means to be announce and they're still looking for a room to squeeze you in.
Don't get classes on opposite ends of the campus.
Especially if you're attending a university with hectares of land. You have the freedom to choose and carefully plan your schedule. Accept that you can't run from one building to the next in just 10 minutes.
Always bring yellow pad.
In high school, you're used to having an intermediate pad, 1/4 pad, 1/2 crosswise, and 1/2 lengthwise. No, don't bring these things to college. When the teacher asks you to take out a 1/4 or 1/2, just get yellow paper, tear it accordingly, and share with your new classmates.
You don't have to stand to recite in class.
Unlike in high school where you're just an underling, college lectures tend to be geared towards an exchange of ideas between like-minded people. (At least, that's what your professor wants to believe.) This is why classes are a bit more informal.
Ask upperclassmen about professors.
It's not always about the level of difficulty or the number of absences in one class. Some professors are really just harder to please than others. Avoid them at all costs. Unless of course you really want to. (You've been warned.)
Sleep when you can.
One week you're as carefree as a kindergartener, the next you might be drowning in term paper deadlines, back-to-back oral exams, and org activities. Suddenly, all-nighters won't seem so cool.
Scour your floor or building for the cleanest restroom.
You never know when youâll need it! Third-floor ones are usually your best bet...because everyone's always afraid they're haunted.
This story originally appeared on Spot.ph.
* Minor edits have been made by the Candymag.com editors.
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Forget Me Not: A forgotten entry in Tokyo
Watching well-made films often fuel the desire for adventure and excitement in our own lives. Like many in their youth, I've felt that childlike feeling of seeing myself as the main character in my own movie. The genres often change with time and it goes from comedy to tragedy really quick. I used to think that if I closed my eyes for too long, I'd miss the best parts. That if I close my eyes then I'd be covering the lens to the camera in my mind. But I also believed that I could dream about what I see again when I lay my head to sleep at nights or that I can re-watch all my memories after I die. But now that I'm older reality has a tighter grasp on my throat as I trudge my rocky road to adulthood. My memory is failing me. I write this entry for that reason. Because I am scared to forget. I was emotionally and mentally worn. I didn't know it at the time but I desperately needed that feeling of childlikeness again.
Senior high school came with so much unnecessary pain and pressure that I didn't realize I was gasping for air. I always sat by the window to stare out during class as the voice of my teacher became background noise that faded into my daydreams. Before I knew it, I was packing a small backpack in the middle of the semester on a cold November evening to go on a trip to Tokyo. This time it wasn't a dream and it felt as if time stood still.
While my friends and classmates were back home in their classrooms going on with their lives and schoolwork, I on the other hand was two-thousand miles away in a foreign land with a foreign language where my basic knowledge was not enough for me to survive on my own. Like passing through the Torii gate which the Japanese believe brings humans into the land of the spirits, I was in a new world. The breeze felt like a cold nip at the tip of my nose as autumn was nearing winter but I've never breathed in air fresher. I was welcomed into a small and warm Japanese home with lovely little folded cranes on a humble dinner table.
My aunt who was far lovelier and even more vibrant than the colors on the delicately folded cranes was there to welcome me as well. The paper cranes weren't the only things she prepared for my one-week stay. On a little pink card, she had my name along with my Tokyo address handwritten in Japanese for our rides on the bus & bullet train; and in case I get lost. She also prepared a small pink pouch with cute yellow elephants on it. The pouch was filled with coins of different amounts. The coins were for me to spend freely on drinks and snacks in vending machines. It was all more than enough since beforehand she already prepared us 2 weeks' worth of snacks for my 1-week stay. On top of all that she prepared winter clothes since I traveled light and she insisted that I wear the pink parka that she brought before I came over. I find it funny that she still thinks I like pink but it's still just like the good old days. She's still one of the most thoughtful people I know. My aunt is a missionary in Japan and has always been like a mother and a friend to me. I sobbed like a baby in front of a thousand-member congregation on the day my family and I sent her off. A few years later, with my father being our Church's missions pastor, I was given the opportunity to travel to Tokyo and see her. Seeing her again was bittersweet. It's sweet since she raised me and is a big part of who I am and my interests today. But bitter because it hits you like a ton of bricks when you notice someone you love is has gotten older or weaker. Don't we all feel that at some point with our parents and guardians? On my father's side of the family, we have issues of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Dementia. It's hard to pretend that it doesn't hurt that after years of being with my grandma, she doesn't know who I am. As for my dad, on top of having Parkinson's he is starting to show early signs of dementia too. It's scary how quickly one can forget decades worth of memories. I wonder if I may go through that as well one day.
At the time these thoughts were overshadowed by the magical Disneyland rides and digital museums, sights like Mt. Fuji as well as traditional and Modern Japanese Architecture, pictures we took at the iconic Hachiko shrine, and Shibuya crosswalk, and even the small oddities of Harajuku fashion and merchandise. I took as many pictures every chance I could get. I wrote in my digital journal with plans to make a picture journal when I get back home. Japan was quite the story to tell that I believe rekindled my childlike spirit. Before we knew it, the week ended and I was packing once again. This time my luggage was more than twice as heavy and the destination this time was home. I dreaded leaving Japan but I dreaded leaving my aunt more. I didn't get to say a proper goodbye to her at the airport due to my not knowing that she was only allowed to see me off until a certain point. I cried on the flight back while holding a giant Donald duck stuffed toy as I just imagined her going to her small Tokyo home alone. I also cried since soon I'd have to face reality once again. After hours of travel I found myself back home in the all too familiar Baguio. But I was in distress. It wasn't because my lungs were starting to forget what clean air felt like or that I'm missing the life I've lived for the past week. But I was in distress because I couldn't find my phone. Why was that the biggest problem in the world to me at the time? It was because of the pictures and notes that were lost with it. All the pictures I took and the notes of the smallest details were a blurry mess amidst the panic in my brain. I never posted anything because I wanted to live in the time there and not worry about anything back home or anyone knowing what I've been up to. But what haunts me is that I don't remember a single one of the pictures I took. I was so sure that I'd be able to go over them when I get back home. I don't want to forget. It's been 550 days and it still bothers me. It's been 550 days and it's only now that I realize the lesson of this story as I write this.
As scary as it is to forget memories, we have to understand when we have to hold on to something and when it's okay to forget. I tried for weeks to somehow recover the pictures on iCloud but to no avail. We may not be able to fix the mistakes of the past or avoid misfortune that is out of our hands but what we can do is to move forward and make more memories that are worth remembering. Treasure the beautiful moments and the lessons from the terrible times. Cherish them and fight to keep these memories on the surface. If you find that difficult to do then strive to tell your stories to others. Because in the times that we forget, then we have others will remember our legacy. We can't be sure about what happens next though we can plan all we want. Often life doesn't have spoilers and may have a plot twist around the corner. As for me, I may never find those photos again but I made it a goal to one day come back to Tokyo and make more memories. That is a promise that I won't forget.
The Art of Doing Nothing
We have been confined with the worldview about the idea of success; thus, the word “productivity” has been diverted into a different meaning. We labeled the level of our success by identifying the weight of the works we’ve done – believing that the busier you are, the more productive you’ll be. But little did we know that this kind of mindset is a pitfall, ending up in a trap and restricting us to do more of what we can.
Every person has their own way of planning on how to get productive. One of the tips mentioned by Prosalendis was the “2 Hour Hermit Mode” where you just need to stay quiet for two hours to learn and reflect. Within the 2-Hour Hermit Mode, you need to completely shut down outside distractions and try to do nothing, this will help you to have a peace of mind and a quiet time. Focus. This word may be cliché, having a shallow meaning, but the reality is, focusing on one thing is one of the hardest things to do. Some people may have mistakenly understood “doing nothing” as unproductive, but this is actually a form of taking a break. I usually do this 2-Hour Hermit every time I am loaded with tons of deadlines. Just try to sit in the corner of a coffee shop and try to discover new things or just go to a place where you find yourself comfort and peace.
The art of doing nothing makes you appreciate the beauty of the mundane things - you get to witness how the leaves sway on their own branches, you get to see the unappreciated smiles of the people, you get to hear the sound of the birds giving you lullabies. You will never have the time to focus if you are too disturbed with a lot of things. Give yourself a rest from thinking about all the work you need to do. Don’t get distracted and give yourself the freedom of unfolding new things. The power of focusing and art of doing nothing will help you to do things you don’t normally do, and maybe start to love the things you once hated. Trace your progress. We don’t know how productive we are unless we trace our activities. I have a journal where I can write the things I have done, and the things I wasn’t able to accomplish. This helps me to track and jot down the things I failed to do within the day.
You are able to take a break and have a rest by doing outside the boundary of the tons of work you have. You will also be surprised that you have done so many things when you’re listing the things you’ve accomplished. This will not just give you the satisfaction but you will also be grateful for what you have done for the past twenty-four hours. You just need a minute to reminisce what you have done while enjoying the silence in the process. Small daily acts can be a solution to achieve our long-term goals. We’re always bombarded with distractions and piled up work, but nothing can beat the idea of staying on track and not feeling lost. By doing this, we will always be reminded why we started to commit on the things that we want to do. After all, what makes us love what we do is knowing why we started it in the first place. The problem with us is that we are too busy achieving, losing the time to see the colors of the ordinary. We are blinded with the idea that success comes with great productivity. We always think that we are defined by how much work we exerted, and not appreciating the effort we’ve given. The fact is you are already successful in acknowledging that you have done something, and nothing.
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Sailormoon is my all time favorite Anime Character (hello 90's kids)! Sailormoon inspired me so much from Girl Power, my artworks, to my ootds and so on and so forth. So to add up my love for Sailormoon here are some of my Sailormoon Inspired OOTD's I have wore before Quarantine :) You can also check my other Sailormoon OOTD's here http://lilmissjaninekaye.blogspot.com/2020/05/ootd-sailormoon-edition.html
At 11 years old, I remember creating my very first (failed) portrait of Heart Evangelista that I saw at a Total Girl magazine. Today, I’m creating commission portraits that I could only hope to make at age 11. Because I previously submitted the photos of this piece in progress, I decided to submit the finished piece. Again, thank you Candy Magazine for featuring and publishing my artworks!