How To Still Be A Human Being Over Winter Break
Classes |  Source: Neil Donoghue (edited)

How To Still Be A Human Being Over Winter Break

Humans don't hibernate for 3 weeks.

So you made it past finals, your trek home, and after being reunited with home cooking and your pets, you start to fall into a routine of sorts. And sometimes, that routine is not only the least efficient use of your time, it's just setting you up for failure when you return to school.

So whether your break is just starting or you've been off for a week already, it's not too late to use these tips to help you be a real person and not just a lazy heap of fuzz over winter break.

1. Get the right amount of sleep

You would think that without finals to study for and with an absence of $2 Tuesdays and Thirsty Thursdays in your life, you'd actually start getting some quality shut eye.

You thought wrong.

It's easy when you have no obligations to stay up all night and sleep all day just because you can, but you're literally going to sleep away your break. Use this time to catch up on sleep, but also to try to get back on a healthy routine before you have to go back to school.

2. Eat this, not that

There is nothing quite as remarkable as your first home cooked meal with your family after returning from a slew of McDonald's, Hot Pockets, and plain chicken breasts. Take advantage of the food your family wants to cook for you.

You can eat all the Mexican and fast food you want when you get back to your lifestyle fueled by coffee and Chick-Fil-A. Enjoy the authenticity and being waited on by your momma. Not to mention, you're probably way less likely to retain all that stressful finals week binge eating weight. Say goodbye to that Finals Fifteen.

3. Keep your shit organized

Yes, technically you can live like a vagabond for three weeks with your socks and study guides strewn across the house in a trail that leads to your room. You can save yourself (and your mom) a lot of hassle by trying to keep your mess confined. That way when you're frantically packing an hour after your ride was supposed to pick you up to take you back to school, you're less likely to forget something of value like oh, I don't know, your laptop... or worse yet... your straightener.

4. Spend time with the fam -- I mean actually hang out with them

Don't get me wrong, I try to keep in touch with everything going on in my friends' lives through group chats, Snaps, and Instagram stories. Take some time to actually spend time with your family and put your phone away. You never know how much you'll get to see them throughout the year, and they're excited to see you. You'll get to spend the next six months with your friends, so turn your phone on airplane mode and watch a Christmas movie together.

5. Actually do something

Make a craft or read a book. Go outside and do stuff in the snow. Take a drive to see Christmas lights. Do things you don't have the time or means to do during the school year. There's a difference between relaxing and slowly becoming a part of the sofa downstairs.

If for nothing else, just do it so when people ask what you did over break, you can pretend it was something other than drinking your parents' liquor in the basement while you played Madden for a record 21 hours straight. Trust me. It's fun and you're saving yourself the shame.


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Classes |  Source: youtube.com

Depression Diaries Episode 3: Spring Break in a Mental Hospital

Not your typical spring break.

While most of my friends went to the beach for spring break this year, I was admitted to a mental hospital. Episode 3 of the Depression Diaries is about my experiences and the process I had to go through once admitted for serious treatment.

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Classes |  Source: lucvsc

Why You Should Wait Until Winter to Get a Tattoo

Tat healing is better during the cooler months.

Tattoos are definitely becoming more mainstream, with 29 percent of Americans having at least one tattoo. However, there is a right and wrong time to get a tattoo. Unfortunately, the summer is the wrong time to get your dream tattoo. The best time to get a tattoo is during the fall or winter months.

First off, the cooler months are just more comfortable for literally everybody. Who likes having to blast the air conditioning to combat the heat, especially while getting a tattoo? The cooler months are just that - cooler - and you will definitely be more comfortable. Plus, you don't sweat during the winter months so that's something you won't have to deal with when it comes to your new tattoo.

Tattoo healing is also better during the cooler months. Sweat is not your friend when it comes to your tattoo. Neither is constant exposure to the sun. When you first get a tattoo, coverage is key. You will avoid fading, damage, possible infection, and it will heal easier and faster.

When your tattoo heals, it goes through stages. The first stage is the healing and scabbing of your tattoo. The second stage is when your tattoo will begin to itch and peel. And the third stage is the final healing, when the scabs will fall off and it will begin to look much better. It's definitely in your best interest to cover up your tattoo during the healing process. No one really wants to show off a healing tattoo. It's the healed tattoo that you want to display.

Lastly, the winter season is the slow season for tattoo shops. That means less waiting time to get your tattoo and your tattoo artist will be able to spend more time with you, making sure that the tattoo you want is the tattoo you get.

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Classes |  Source: @masterone

The Secret To Success

Ain't no shame In the nap game.

Don't worry, I'm not about to bore you with all of my academic achievements and extracurriculars (duh, that's what LinkedIn is for), but I will say I had a busy workload and focused heavily on doing well in my classes.

Problem is, trying to balance everything and get a full night's sleep is nearly impossible in college. A study at Stanford University found that the majority of college students really need "well over eight hours" of sleep a night.


HA! I couldn't even tell you the last time I slept eight hours. However, sleep deprivation is a serious issue and could be to blame if you're feeling less productive, having trouble concentrating, feeling irritable... the list goes on.

So what's my secret to getting my work done while balancing the crazy college lifestyle? The Power Nap. I'm not talking two or four hour long naps where you wake up feeling like you slept into another dimension. Personally, if I ever nap that long I become even more unproductive than when I started. Sort of defeats the purpose.


I'm referring to the glorious sub-20 minute power naps. You get just enough sleep so your brain can function, but still have the this-assignment-is-due-in-two-hours adrenaline rush pumping through you. Plus, you don't miss too much of your day (you know, time needed to finish that paper).

I'll be honest, I was both blessed and cursed with the ability to fall asleep within seconds of putting my head down. It's handy for power naps, but an absolute nightmare when I'm trying to get work done on long bus rides to and from games. I'm always a goner.

The key to perfecting the utility of the power nap is getting rid of any and all sense of shame in napping publicly. Some might see this as social suicide- what about all the people who see me? Completely mortifying- they're totally going to judge me!

Wrong. Most likely the judgement comes from being too insecure to do it themselves- and deep down they probably wish they could crash wherever they wanted to. I've been "caught" napping literally everywhere on campus- the library, dorm lounges, dining hall, locker room, the quad, you name it. I do it both out of convenience and time-saving necessity.


If anything, power napping publicly should give you some social capital in demonstrating you don't give a damn what people think. We all have to prioritize, and I say whatever gets the job done is it.

My friends made fun of me at first, but I soon acquired a large following of believers who now preach the good word about the miracle of power naps

"Taylor, I just took a 14 minute one and I feel like a new person!"
"Can you wake me up in 10?"
"Mind passing me that jacket? I'm gonna crash under the table for a bit."

Yes my friends, this is transformative. I guarantee it will help you on those days your brain feels foggy and fried and your productivity level is rapidly entering the danger zone. So set that alarm and when you wake up and can finally think straight you can thank me.


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Classes |  Source: @Loutay1110

First Time Home for the Holidays

What do you mean I'm underage?

It's that time of year again. The weather is getting colder, the days are becoming shorter, and college kids are heading home. Yep, it's the holidays.
The holidays are a great time to see family, reconnect with high school friends and eat lots of great home cooking. But it is a little different when you are coming home from college for the holidays, and the adjustment can be a little tricky...
You have no friends.
Hold up. What do you mean all my college friends didn't come home with me? It's weird.
Being in college means you are never more than five minutes away from your BFF, and you never have to do anything alone. Being bored isn't really a thing in college. But at home, you are suddenly sitting on your couch realizing that you are alone and you really don't know how to change that.
WTF is a curfew?
Coming back from school means you don't have the same freedom. You are once again living under your parents' roof and are 'forced' to follow their rules. So if they say you need to be home by 10 p.m., you best believe you will be home by 9:55 p.m.
And you also best be quiet. You aren't waltzing into your own apartment at 3 a.m. anymore. Now, you are coming home and trying not to wake up your little sister.
What do you mean I'm underage?
Did you know that binge drinking isn't a common practice outside of college? Yeah, pretty strange.
It can be hard, especially during your first break home, to avoid drinking whatever alcohol you can find, because it is definitely not appropriate for you to be drunk while chatting with your grandma about Organic Chemistry. Just try and hang in there, it's only a few weeks until you can go back to blacking out every weekend.
Chores, chores, chores.
You thought that returning from college would make you some type of prodigal child, didn't you? Yeah, no. Your parents and family aren't going to let you off the hook just because they haven't seen you in a while.
In fact, they really see you as an extra set of hands now to get things done. So you may want to sit around and be lazy, but you've got errands to run. And take out the trash. And do the dishes. And the laundry.
Home isn't like college. But don't take it for granted. After those few weeks off, you will once again be thrust into the crazy, fun and stressful world that is college. So enjoy the time with your family. Eat as much food as possible and just remember, you'll be back to studying, friends and partying before you know it.

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Classes |  Source: kpbs.org

Finals Week as Told by Hamilton

WORK!

It's that time of the year again....I'm not referring to the holiday season (I wish I was...), but rather to the not-nearly-as-merry finals season. Students across the nation are preparing themselves for never-ending biology cram sessions, for 10 page APA essays, and for breaking the world record for most consecutive hours without sleep, caffeinated or uncaffeinated.

As a fun little study break, which in my mind is crucial in order to remain sane during exams, I've compiled a list of finals week moments that you'll undoubtedly experience or witness in the coming weeks....told exclusively through Hamilton gifs.

You stayed up until 4 a.m. studying for your 9 a.m. Bio exam, you're in need of caffeine in order to begin functioning, and the Starbucks line is out the door, down the street...

When you finally realize the extent to which you procrastinated on literally everything leading up to the end of the semester.

When there's that one freshman in your Advanced Stats lecture that somehow has the highest grade in the class and you ask them how on earth they've been doing so well, when you understand exactly nothing.

When you thought you were being proactive by starting your American Lit final essay early, but the professor changes the requirements after you've finished writing half of it.

That feeling when the professor says, "We won't be having a final during exam week."

When Einstein's in the library is closed and you feel personally betrayed by the one place that has always faithfully carbed up your study sessions.

When you're tutoring a failing student for their upcoming history exam, they STILL don't understand anything you've taught them, and you're slowly losing your patience and your mind.

When your Stats grade is posted and you see that your hard work actually paid off for once. #WORK

When everyone else is done with their finals and you have a test on the last possible time slot the Friday of finals week.

And when it's finally all over, you're going home, and you have no academic obligations for a whole month...