Glitter Jitters

Yes, you read that right……glitter, jitters.

My best friend’s son started kindergarten this year. This is her first child to approach school age so I know it’s a big deal for her.

While we were catching up the other day, she told me all about the open house, taking him to meet his teachers and the conquest of getting all his school supplies. She seemed to be really happy with her son’s teacher for the year. While at his open house, the teacher gave him a sealed bag filled with glitter. The bag had a label attached that said “jitter glitter” and a short little poem.

Apparently, “jitter glitter” is supposed to help kids with some of the nervousness that comes with the first day of school. Kids place the bag of glitter underneath their pillow the night before the first day of school to help put them at ease for the next day to come. I’d never heard of this before and thought it was a super cute idea.

And, I can say that I definitely had some “jitters” before the start of graduate school.

I’ve been thinking a lot about when I first went away from home to start my undergraduate college career. I was in my late teens with (let’s be honest) not much real-life experience and my world revolving just around the small world of high school. I was definitely nervous about being away from home and college classes.

But overall, I was walking into college looking to get an education and, make college my life.

For grad school, this feels like a different ballgame.

And yes, while there are similarities between the jitters of starting my undergraduate and my graduate college careers, like nervousness over coursework and grades…..there’s a huge difference.

At thirty, college doesn’t define my life, rather it’s just a part of it.

It’s doesn’t feel like school, more like a part-time job. (At least, that’s how I feel).

My life is already developed from and consumed by my full-time job, friends I try to stay social with, normal adult responsibilities, and trying to learn how to live a healthy lifestyle.

Most of the nerves come from the uncertainty of how graduate school will fit into all of this.

So what was my glitter?

Before the start of school, I grocery shopped and meal prepped meals to have over a week’s time.

I cleaned my bedroom and car.

I organized my desk workspace to be cleaner. And don’t get me wrong, more could be done…..but, I did just what I had time to and enough to make a difference.

Basically, I prepared. Preparing, getting ahead with some “life” things, and creating a less-cluttered environment helped me to feel less anxious.

I knew with the start of school, I could be in the right mindset.

Also, I treated myself out to a really fun girls night with my best friend. Some live music, drinks, and great conversations were great jitter glitters…..also, nights out like these keep everything in perspective.

Balance in life is possible, even though it may be work. Here comes the challenge!

Hope all of you students are having a great start to your year!

A Little Bit of This, a Little Bit of That, and a Little Bit of Mac

This post starts somewhat silly………but, I bought a new computer for the first time in about 7 years. Woo!

I have other Apple devices, but this will be my first time purchasing a MacBook. I’ve always had PCs….so I’m sure there will be a learning curve. My sister purchased her first MacBook several years ago and was really happy with her purchase. So, when I was looking to upgrade this factored majorly into my decision.

The downside is I did have to save up a stash of cash, but I’m really excited. I don’t regularly spend this kind of money on electronics or new computers, so what’s the deal?

Well, I guess it’s time to make this statement official……

I’m starting GRADUATE SCHOOL THIS FALL!

And I know this statement may read with excitement and joy, but honestly……………

……….going back to school brings up a number of emotions far different from excitement and joy……….

I mean sure a part of me is excited………….but……fear, hesitation, anxiety, disgust (real honesty here), and inadequacy are also emotions popping up here and there.

I mentioned in my first post….my 30th birthday really had me questioning everything going on in my life in the most cliché way. And yes, while I was thinking about my current work situation…..I was also thinking about my future, where I wanted to go, what I wanted to ultimately do in life. I forced myself to look beyond the next couple of weeks, months, and look instead into the next couple of years.

I’ve always wanted to pursue a graduate degree, but have been gun-shy on the idea for a while. But, as I have been finding out, sitting on the sidelines of life……watching people, accomplishments, and opportunities pass you by….you eventually learn that you have to jump.

At least, that’s how I’ve felt. 

I’d be lying if I said I am 100% sure that going back to school is the right choice. I fully know graduate school will be no joke and lots of hard work. I will be officially adding myself to the category of full-time working adults going back to school. And while that sounds liberating in a way, after what feels like many seasons of indecisiveness in the past, it’s also scary.

However, I don’t think we are ever really 100% sure of most things in life (at least I know this applies to me) and when I see my future, I see growth, career advancement, leadership, happiness, and a defined purpose. And, I believe that pursuing higher education and my master’s degree will be a necessary step in the process.

And yet again, even with the occasional fear and questioning…..I keep hearing in my head……“it’s better to do something than nothing”. I need to allow myself to learn and grow………………

………………even if that means making mistakes.

With all this said, I guess I’m paving more of a way for the direction of my blog. For all the full-time working graduate students, I’d love to hear any tips or advice you have. I hope you will read along with my journey of living/finding my best life, learning to live a healthy lifestyle, and balancing all in the in-between!

Staying Sane in the Change

This year feels like one big whirlwind so far. In my last post, I mentioned how being discontent with my job was affecting my happiness. While there were many parts of my job that I enjoyed, I yearned for change. I was craving a different environment, different challenges, and different information to learn.

These feelings started last year, right before Christmas. For a long time, I felt lost, trapped, and confused. Change has NEVER been easy for me. And for whatever reason, changing jobs at 30 felt a little more daunting than when I was 25. While I could go on for a whole post of how this happened/the process, I will say that the one thing I did that started the ball rolling was just casually searching job postings. Even if there was nothing available or anything that caught my eye, I was persistent. Eventually, after 5 months, I found a position within my same organization that caught my eye.

This position was in the same field and specialization I was currently in, yet different enough to have me interested. Long story short- I applied, interviewed, accepted the job.

And now, here I am. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very excited about this much-awaited change. But, change for me is always bittersweet. Leaving familiarity, for me, can be stressful.

Whenever a change like this and the accompanying stress enters my life, I tend to self-destruct in a way. My eating, working out, self-care, and healthy habits, in general, take a turn for the worse.

The reason for this post is to document the fact that I stayed very self-aware this go-around and worked hard to not take my usual route of self-destruction.

Instead of opting for unhealthy take-out, I’ve been pretty consistent with meal prep and saving eating-out for a “treat” during the week.

Instead of stress eating junk food, I sweated my stress out at the gym.

Instead of sweeping my anxieties under the rug, I journaled. I don’t think I’d be human if I didn’t question myself at least once during all the change. But, I forced myself to think of the worst possible things that could happen. If I didn’t like the new job? I eventually could transfer back to where I came from. And….the thought of “it’s better to do something than nothing” kept coming into my mind.

Instead of worrying about things I couldn’t control, I put extra time into face masks, nail polishes, and researching hair care routines.

Instead of using Netflix binges as a way to de-stress, I took myself to the gym.

Instead of mindlessly scrolling social media in bed 30 minutes before falling asleep, I put on a face mask and pulled out a book for a better way of preparing to sleep.

And let me just say……there is NOTHING WRONG with a Netflix binge, fast food dinner, or relaxing by surfing Pinterest here and there. But, I know what habits keep me on track for the goals and the life I want to achieve and…….in this current season of my life, I know the certain habits and behaviors that will detract me from achieving my goals.

And don’t get me wrong….this has been SUPER hard…….and I know that eventually, I will have moments of downfall. We all do. But, I just wanted to put out there for people like me…..it can be done. Change is inevitable, but you can persist. You can grow. Don’t forget to focus on yourself.