Maybe the internet can help!

Something my sisters have observed about me is that i am not very good at the internet. By that I mean that beyond gmail, facebook and maybe NPR, i really find myself not knowing where to go for fun/information/goofy videos/ when i go online. I just never really got around to learning how to enjoy surfing the web, cruising tumblr’s or listening to podcasts.

However, after a *semi* recent breakup i decided, hey, people look to the internet for answers, i may as well cast my net wide and see what comes in. Maybe it was because I was feeling a little lost and didn’t know where to turn to, but i began my quest for collecting data on how people deal with breakups to compare with what was doing to cope.

Whenever I was feeling confused/sad/wanting-to-talk-to-that-someone-that-i-can’t-talk-to-anymore, I would write them letters. We had written each other letters during our relationship, so i had memories of using a pen and paper as a mode of communication with them, so it was therapeutic. I could explain myself without getting push-back, and say things that i didn’t have a chance to say in person. 5279656-Collection-of-different-vintage-letters-with-stamps-Stock-Photo

I realized that it would be unhealthy and unproductive for both of us to ever send those letters. But the process of writing them, folding them up, and putting them in an envelope in my desk drawer felt ok. So that was where i started in my internet quest to seek solidarity in heart break!

Did other people write letters that would go nowhere? Is it ok to write letters that will never be sent? The answer is yes people are doing it and yes it is ok! I found a tumblr with this very idea: http://theletterineversent.tumblr.com/

You can submit a digital letter, or just read the letters written by other people that were never meant to be received. I guess the moral of the story is that even though the internet can be isolating, it can also be a great tool to have your feelings/thoughts validated!

As i mentioned at the beginning, i am sort of new to this, so maybe this is restating the obvious. But maybe there is a special tumblr/site/group out there that can support you in your well being in whatever way you need it.

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DIY Body Care

 

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Happy lunar new year!!

About a year ago, I began changing my daily body care routine. There were several reasons – minimize the amount of unknown ingredients I use on my body, it’s good for the environment, – but mostly, I love DIYs and it’s been a surprisingly smooth sailing process!

Here is a link to one of the things I replaced in my cosmetic bag – homemade deodorant! On this site also is a link to instructions on how to replace shampoo with baking soda (I’ve started doing this and it’s been really great – except my hair gets really static-y? I am still tweaking my routine).

Angry Chicken Homemade Deodorant Recipe

STUDY/JAM

It’s midterm season, and it can be easy to let stress get the best of you. But fear no more! Here’s a playlist that might help you with your studies and stress relief simultaneously. Music has always helped me focus and decompress. This semester I’ve started a new routine I like to call the Study/Jam. So far I’ve found that listening to non-lyrical music improves my attention-span while reading/writing/studying. These songs help me visualize the setting of my readings and push me to consider rhythm and sound when writing. After a while, intense study can get to a point where I feel like I’m having a staring contest with my notes. When my body starts to get antsy, I push aside what I’m working on, clear my floor and take some time to jam out. Forcing myself to move in between working clears my head and helps me think more creatively.

This playlist budgets an hour of reading time, but is peppered with songs that make me (and hopefully you, too!) want to DANCE. After about 20 minutes of reading/writing/studying time, there’s roughly 10 minutes to kick your feet, throw your hands in the air, do cartwheels (if your single is larger than a pantry or your roommate is elsewhere), let your body speak while your mind rests!

Good luck with exams, everyone! Remember not to forget about taking time for yourself. I hope this playlist allows you to study more productively with time to jam and decompress in between 🙂

Quick q’s for a frantic self: learning to attack unhelpful thoughts

this is definitely one of those “easier said than done” things and definitely not an “be all end all” method to calming anxious thoughts but sometimes just the process and patience of asking + answering questions to yourself is helpful.

for those moments that we are our own best friend:

questions for anxiety

sometimes neglecting your basic bodily needs is the final straw. consider these questions and tend to them accordingly. this isn’t a to-do list, but rather to draw your attention to what your body might be asking for.

  1. When was the last time you ate?
  2. Did you have a piece of fruit today?
  3. Have you taken a moment to yourself today?
  4. When was the last time you took a shower?
  5. Have you seen a friend today?
  6. Have you moved around in the last few hours?

“College Advice Megapost Situation” from Autostraddle

It’s almost time for back to school–here at Barnard new student orientation starts this weekend!–and the staff of the awesome website Autostraddle (“News, Entertainment, Opinion, Community and Girl-on-Girl Culture”) have created a fantastic round-up of  “all of the ultimate back to school advice for college bound queers” to start your semester off right, whether you’re returning to school for another year or just starting your college experience. Enjoy!

All of the Ultimate Back-To-School Advice for College-Bound Queers

 

And that kids is the story of how I met…. Part 2!

As the leaves finish falling, many of us head home to our hometowns to see old friends and family. Being reunited with the people we’ve known for so long may make us forget how long it took us to build such intimate relationships. In our last installment of “And that’s the story of how I met…” peer eds shared how they met their friends in college. But as graduating seniors know, life continues after college. It may seem daunting to have to make friends without the comfort of a shared living space or classroom struggles. Below a few Barnard staff share how they made their first “grown-up” friendships. Check back again next week to read more stories from staff members about how they met their friends!

Dean Grabiner, First-Year Class Dean and Dean for Academic Assistance

One way I’ve found to make friends post-college is to be my authentic self when I interact with people at work, to the extent that it’s professionally appropriate. For example, I was in a meeting some years ago where a topic came up that related to my own identity politics, and I made a comment that began, “As a gay woman, I….” Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a woman at the far end of the table swivel her head over to look at me, and I saw a look of recognition on her face. The next time I ran into her, she made a point of coming up to me to talk about how she always attends the Michigan Women’s Music Festival and used to visit the West Village as a teenager from Long Island because it made her feel free. These moments of connection were the beginning of our friendship.

Mary Joan L. Murphy,Executive Director of Student Health and Wellness Programs
I would say that I made many of my post college friends from volunteering and graduate school.
Immediately after college, I worked for two yearsa as a teacher volunteer in Belize, Central America with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps-similiar to Peace Corps but much smaller and has some value components attached with it. I made a group of life long friends from that experience. I also joined the group Team and Training with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society when I moved back to NYC and completed a marathon and a couple triatholons with them and made a great group of friends through this. I also have a few friends (one of whom I just went out to dinner with last night) from my graduate work.
My advice would be to get involved with groups and topics you are interested in where you will find like minded people!

Jenna Freedman, Associate Director of Communications & Zine Librarian
My core group of non-professional friends are folks I worked with as a lighting technician at the Public Theater and Shakespeare in the Park. Long hours, hard work, danger and lots of fun build intense friendship.

I’m also close to a lot of librarians, online and in person, IMing daily with my BFF from grad school. You might be surprised at how social librarians are.

Over the last few years I’ve gotten back into letter-writing. I can spend an hour writing someone a letter and decorating the envelope. Doing that, and getting similarly crafted mail back makes me feel close to people, one of whom I’ve never met and probably never will.

I still consider my college roommate my lifelong bestie though she lives in Connecticut and I rarely see her.

Add New Practices to Your Skin Care Regimen!

Hey well people!

Today’s post is a video from blogger/vlogger Fran of Hey Fran Hey. Fran has tons of videos and blog posts on skin care, natural hair care, alternatives health options, fitness, and more. She does an awesome job of talking about how these methods can be beneficial to your overall health and offers affordable ways to live an intentional  lifestyle.

In this particular video she shares her her full body skin care regimen. One practice that I’ve adopted from this video is dry brushing before showering. Dry brushing rids the body of dead skin cells, stimulates blood circulation, cleanses the lymphatic system, and has other life-improving benefits.  Check out the video for more detail on dry brushing and other awesome ways to keep your skin and health on point!

Happy Hump Day,

Kyara 🙂