Removing Toxic People From Your Life

The one huge lesson I’ve learned after college: you have to remove toxic people from your life.

You probably have friends, whom you thought you would be pals with forever, but they weigh you down. But you can’t cut them out since you’ve spent so much time with and shared secrets. You think about the good things they have done for you.

But deep down, you know they’re causing more harm to you.

This is a hard lesson to learn.

I have had to do this because I didn’t see the point of pretending to want to be friends. This was made clear when I looked through my contact list on my phone. I scrolled down and realized that I had not talked to these people in months.

So, I decided to delete those numbers off my phone. It felt relieving. Then, I removed those people off my social media too.

After doing that, I wondered why I did not do it sooner. But I knew that I was scared to let go. I felt so comfortable having friendships I developed at the beginning of college.

At the end of the day, some friendships aren’t meant to last forever. Some friendships can actually be toxic.

You have to be willing to end them.

Podcasts As My New Lectures

Back in February, CollegeFashionista emailed me about their new podcast series. I heard about podcasts as a medium vaguely in the past; they were explained as digital radio interviews.

I listened to Amy Levin’s, founder CollegeFashionista, first interview with Joyce Chang, EIC of Self Magazine. Amy Levin asked Joyce how she pursed a career in journalism. Besides journalism, Joyce shared her new habit of meditating in the morning to clear her mind.

Listening to Joyce’s talking about meditation made me make meditation a daily part of my routine.

The podcast interview showed me how information can be presented differently.

Podcast as a medium taps into the audio senses of the mind. Unlike print, you can actually hear the tone and attitude of a person.

On the contrast with video, you’re only listening instead of letting visuals distract you. When you watch an interview on YouTube, you can’t help judge what a person is wearing. That can distract you from understanding the ideas a person is conveying.

Thanks to CollegeFashionista, I have began listening to other podcasts. My favorite is 88 Cups of Tea by Yin Chang. I remembered Yin Chang as Nelly Yuki on “Gossip Girl”.

To my great surprise, Yin switched from acting to hosting. She interviews various creative minds, especially writers and directors, on how their creative process works. Plus, she asks them to give practical advice on deal with writer’s block, such as which computer programs to use.

Just recently, Yin interviewed David J. Peterson, on how he created the language for “Game of Thrones”. I learned the term conlag, which means a person who invents languages.

My new habit of listening to podcasts has shown me that you don’t have to gain knowledge from a classroom only. Podcasts are a free way to gain others’ knowledge and advice. Plus, they are a lot more enjoyable than a typical college lecture.

I recommend that you take the time to listen to a podcast. You will enjoy it.

Lessons Learned From First Year Out of College

It has almost been a year since graduating college. The first year after college proved to be a huge adjustment. Becoming an adult has turned out to be rather overrated.

But I have learned some important lessons.

1. Exercise is a must

I’m very lazy when it comes to exercising. Getting my butt up is such a hassle. But I have realized that I have to move my body or else I will get fat.

To avoid sitting all day, I take a walk outside. This allows me to breathe in fresh air and appreciate Mother Nature.

2. Care about what you’re putting in your body

Eating junk food was my favorite activity growing up. In college, I stuffed my face due to the stress.

After graduating, I began to feel rather sleepy and sick when I ate too much greasy food. Now, I only eat fast food to twice a week. I drink tea daily too.

3. Make time for others

In school, people are right there to hang out. Once you hit the real world, you classmates are not physically there. They become busy with their own jobs and lives.

That is why you have to put in the effort to reconnect with others or else your friendships will slowly fall apart.

4. Keep learning

It’s easy to let your brain rot after college. That is why you have to keep your learning up. However, learning doesn’t have to be in a classroom. You can take online courses for free or take part in a community based class. Traveling is another great option too.

5. Focus on your goals

You’ll probably face plenty of rejection. I’ve received so many no or things didn’t work out. Yet, you can’t quit. People who succeed are the ones who keep going.

 

Get Used To Not Knowing

There is no guide on how to live or even plan life after college.

As much as we want to control things, life won’t work the way we want it to. It is a hard lesson to swallow. I for one have been struggling with it the most. 

Not knowing is quite scary. Questions start popping on what will happen next. Most of the time, the answer won’t appear until it happens.

But, we should not stress out on not knowing. We should embrace the present. Whatever happens next, embrace it. 

You’re Getting Old When…

Two nights ago, I was talking with a friend on the phone. We were chatting until we expressed how tired we were. “What happened to us?” I asked. “We are old now! We can’t wait to sleep now.” My friend laughed so hard at my statement.

It hasn’t been a year since graduating, yet the signs of getting old are hitting me.

1. Eating greasy food grosses you out

I loved eating greasy food because it made me fell full and happy. In college, I regularly ordered takeout.

Now, I want to vomit if I eat too much junk food or takeout.

2. Watching Netflix over clubbing

In college, I barely cared to go to the club unless my friends dragged me. The club was fun since I was with my friends.

However, I now don’t care for clubbing. I can’t stand the idea of being in a crowded room with drunk people spilling their drinks on me. On top of that, listening to lousy music bores me.

I would rather be at home watching Netflix than be at the club.

3. Sleep is your favorite activity

Staying up late was no big deal in college. I’d run late night runs to Taco Bell with friends. We would eat in a lounge on campus and didn’t go to sleep till late in the morning. That would cause us to go to class with little sleep.

My bed now makes me excited at the end of the day.

4. Shopping for classy items

Forever21 was my go to shopping place. I found cheap items there and they worked for class.Trendy items were my fashion focus.

Since graduating, my friends and I have been adapting classy items in our wardrobe. Time is limited when you have to go from work to a dinner with friends. You simply don’t have time to change outfits.

5. Slang no longer makes sense

I still use plenty of slang in my daily talks, but I’m starting to not understand current slang. Teenagers now no longer making sense to me. I get confused on what they’re saying!

Committing These Beauty Care Mistakes

Acne is the common enemy of most people; it has been a huge pain of mine. My skin has gone from super disgusting to okay and then bad again.

The way that I treated my skin was the main reason for my bad skin.

I have committed these terrible beauty care mistakes:

1. Over exfoliating the face

I had no idea that exfoliating your face too much can actually lead to breakouts. In college, I washed my face twice a day everyday and my skin experienced dryness. Exfoliating your skin is important to remove dirt, but over doing it will  strip the nutrition out of your skin.

Now, I exfoliate every other night and my skin has been a lot smoother.

2. Not changing up products

My friend was surprised when I told her that I was using the same products for a year. She explained to me that I should be using different products every four months. The face get used to them over time, which makes them less effective.

3. Not putting Vaseline on before bed

My lips are normally dry. Recently, I’ve been putting Vaseline on my lips before going to bed. My lips aren’t so dry in the morning anymore.

Finally Reading For Pleasure

As a student, I wasn’t a fan of reading. I read as slow as a snail.

In college, I skimmed (or not read at all) most of my assigned readings. My textbooks would have notes on the margins.

During my free time, I didn’t care to read any literature. My mind was burnt out from a long day of classes. All I wanted to do at night was either read Fashionista.com or watch some anime.

Since graduating college, I’ve developed a desire to read literature. Literature shows how the characters are feeling or thinking about the challenges they face. You become engage with the words on the page by questioning the motives of the characters.

The recent book I read was The Executioner’s Song by Norman Mailer. I was amazed by Mailer’s ability to create a narrative of the murder Gary Gilmore. The book provided the struggles that Gilmore endured growing up and the various people in his life, especially his lover Nicole.

I still can’t believe that I actually read the 1000 pages of The Executioner’s Song. Massive books used to intimidate me because I feared that I would quit halfway. However, the novel was compelling due to how it provided different viewpoints of the characters.

Lately, I’ve been watching “Shadowhunters”, which has made me begin reading The City of Bones. I’ve figured that I should actually read the books to check if the show follows the books.

As a college graduate, I’ve realized that reading is a task to put time aside to do.

Naturally Drifting Apart

During my last year of college, I was having lunches and chatting with my friends. We laughed and panicked about what we were going to do after graduation. The fear of not knowing motivated us to hang out often before we went our separate way.

Months later, I have lost touched with a bunch of people. I barely have the desire to text them first. They did nothing wrong. We just drifted apart.

Since graduating, I have learned one life lesson: People aren’t meant to stay in your life forever. People come and go. The relationships you still have, treasure them deeply.

Whatever to Money and Prestige

It’s seemed like everyone love to fuss about the importance of money and prestige. People fear that you’re crazy if you choose to pursue an unconventional path in life.

Back in college, fellow history and politics majors did not know how to mind their own business. They kept shoving law school down my throat. I straight up ignored them.

The most important life lesson college taught me: don’t give a fuck about money and prestige. Not all money is good money. If you focus on money solely, you might regret doing unethical behavior. As for prestige, it’s overrated because it doesn’t really bring happiness; it instead creates a superficial reason for people to admire you.

I have chosen to focus on goals that fit my personal mission of enriching myself with intellectual, personal, and creative experiences.

Lunch on Tennyson!

Confession: I have been anti-social lately. I have been a hermit at home. For New Year’s Eve, a friend was sweet enough to invite me out.

My effort in hanging out with people has been lacking.

However, I have been changing my social behavior slowly.

On Monday, my college pal Britt texted me late at night. We chatted for an hour. Then, she suggested that we get together for lunch!

We both agreed to have lunch at Parisi, best Italian restaurant in Denver! If you haven’t eaten there yet, go now!

When I was driving to Parisi, I exited the highway. Right as I exited, there was heavy construction on Lowell! I did not know why.

Traffic was not moving for a few minutes and I decided to find another way to Parisi.

Luckily, I arrived at Parisi 15 minutes early; I was paranoid about being late.

While waiting for Britt, I looked at the menu. Very indecisive on what to get, “Antipasta section? Nah to that. I want pasta since I’m at an Italian place!”

For a second, I put the menu down and Britt entered!

“Wearing the same outfit you wore in college.” I giggled. Britt was wearing an orange shirt, sweater, and sweats.

“Yeah.” Britt laughed. “The exact same outfit.”

She and I ordered. I decided to get the mushroom risotto! Been craving risotto for months.

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Originally, the worker instructed us to sit a certain booth. Britt and I walked to the booth, but two old men were occupying it.

We decided to sit at another booth. A waiter smiled and said, “Wise decision.”

After we sat down, the waiter was very sweet to get us water.

Britt and I began talking about what we had been doing since graduation. I revealed, “Britt, I am glad that I still talk with you. I barely talk to anyone from Regis.” Britt admitted that she felt the same.

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Then, I said, “I don’t care to go to our college reunion.”

“Wait?” Britt asked. “We have a college reunion. I thought that was only for high school?”

“Yeah,” I responded. “They do a reunion for college too. I don’t care to go to ours. I don’t want to deal with people coming up to me and talking to me. I don’t care to pretend.”

“Pretend to be fake,” Britt joked.

“I don’t care to pretend,” I explained. “I don’t want to deal with people asking me, ‘Are you married? Do you have kids?’ See, people have not asked for my number or bothered Facebooking me.”

Britt was laughing. She said, “Same!”

“If we actually ever go, I will stick with you!” I screamed.

“I would have you speaking for me, since we talk everyday,” Britt joked.

Our lunch was lovely! The risotto was creamy and fulling. Being healthy was the last thing on my mind at that moment.

After lunch, we walked around Tennyson. The Book Bar had a sick mural of Harry Potter with Cat in the Hat! My childhood in one image!

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We checked out the Book Bar for a bit and the children section was adorable.

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My afternoon with Britt was lovely and it reminded me to make time for friends. Being alone too much is not healthy for the soul.