Twenty-Two

I have always hoped to look back on my life in fifty years and think, “At twenty-two I had it made. I was young and beautiful, thin and sexy, popular and intelligent. I was invited to the best parties, went to the best places, knew the funniest people. At twenty-two, life was perfect.”

But the truth is, I probably won’t be looking back saying any of that. The truth is that twenty-two just isn’t like that for most people. This is probably more like what I’ll be saying when I look back in fifty years:

At twenty-two…

1. I was still alternately napping and pulling all nighters in an effort to get through college.

2. I was curvy (which is a nice way to say that I never got rid of my Freshman 15…okay, Freshman 50).

3. I still watched Disney movies with a religious dedication known only to a few monks in Tibet.

4. I’d had four internships – which really meant, I had provided slave labor for a number of companies loosely related to my studies.

5. I had changed what I wanted to do with my life at least once a year for all twenty-two of those years.

6. I came out of the closet as the true nerd that I really am, comic books and MMOs included.

7. I figured out how to use hashtags on twitter. #thattookwaytoolong

8. I learned that you really don’t need to read every line in your textbook – but you actually do need to read some of it.

9. I learned how to take a “B”. Fellow Type A’s, you know this is a struggle. I didn’t say I learned to like it, rather I learned that sometimes life happens and a “B” will not be the reason you miss out on a job.

10. I beat Mortal Kombat 9.

11. I learned how to travel and explore by myself without being scared. Well, without being too scared.

12. I found that my biggest regrets were about not taking more chances and making bigger changes.

13. I found that while unplugging is the hardest thing to do, sometimes it must be done to avoid early onset carpal tunnel and premature eye problems.

14. I found that pearls and ballet flats never go out of style (Preach it, Audrey!)

15. I believed that Saved by the Bell was still quality television.

16. I realized that just because you were making life plans, doesn’t mean that other peoples’ lives will follow your directions.

17. I fell in love with a sweet boy and learned what it was like to be treated like a princess.

18. I learned to have a voice – on a blog, on twitter – and to know that if you have something to say and you say it passionately, someone will listen.

19. I learned that the friends you make while traveling and volunteering are probably the best friends you’ll ever have. (Read: go travel and go volunteer. Now.)

20. I’ve learned that friends you met a year ago can be just as close as friends you met in first grade. But both types of relationships take a lot of work to cultivate and maintain. The more you talk the more you’ll want to talk.

21. I’ve learned that you absolutely, positively, seriously need to grocery shop regularly – no matter how much you hate it.

22. And finally, I learned that it doesn’t matter if you go to all the right clubs or parties. It doesn’t matter if you’re thin or have amazing style. What matters is that when you look back, you know you are proud of all you’ve accomplished and you can’t wait to see what your next twenty-two years will bring.

Hey friends, what did you learn at twenty-two? Leave a comment and let me know!

 

The DOs and DON’Ts of Finals

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I’m not going to lie, Calvin really understands me. His genius proves that he has a thorough grasp on how the real world handles school work. And so, in light of finals coming up, I’d like to impart some of the wisdom that I’ve gained in the past 3.5 years of college on my readers. Here it is:

The DOs and DON’Ts of Finals:

DO review your notes.
DON’T highlight everything in different colors, pretending that you’re color-coding, but really just making an effort to make your paper look pretty.

DO take the time to make sure each marking you make on your test obviously indicates your selected answer.
DON’T make your scantron sheet look like a Christmas Tree.

DO take short breaks from studying often to refresh your mind.
DON’T take short breaks from facebook to study, then refresh the page again a minute later.

DO have healthy snacks throughout the studying process.
DON’T give yourself a piece of cake as a reward for reading each page.

DO blow off some steam by watching a movie or hanging out with friends until a reasonable hour.
DON’T party with your friends Jose Cuervo and Captain Morgan until 3:00am before beginning your paper.

DO check on youtube for visual examples of some topics you may be studying (works well for science!).
DON’T accidentally click over to the sponsored/featured video of One Direction’s latest hit.

DO tidy up your study area to limit distractions.
DON’T clean the entire apartment, do all your laundry, scrub the floors, rearrange the kitchen, reorganize your desk drawers, etc.

DO schedule out study time or craft a few goals to help keep you on target.
DON’T waste half an hour creating a sticky note or dry erase hourly schedule that you won’t end up following. (As you’ll see, I clearly did both.)

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DO find a quiet place to study without music or idle chatter.
DON’T go to the library if you’re just going to put Pandora on your headphones and lipsync to Spice World.

DO get a good night’s sleep.
DON’T take a four hour nap in the middle of the day.

DO get some exercise.
DON’T count jogging between the fridge and your computer as exercise.

DO try meditating or yoga to calm your nerves.
DON’T hurt yourself while pretending you can cross both legs on top of each other like they do in movies about gurus.

DO stay hydrated.
DON’T pretend that Pepsi, coffee or 5 Hour Energy will hydrate you.

DO check out your grades ahead of time to know where you stand.
DON’T panic when you realize that even if you ace the test you can’t get over a B in the class.

DO bring both pencils and pens to the test.
DON’T freak out when it breaks in the middle of the test and you have to bend down and look in your bag to get a new one and you’re petrified that the teacher is going to think you’re cheating and oh my god, you’ve only got forty minutes left and your teacher thinks you’re a cheat and your pencil is still broken OH MY GOD YOU’RE SWEATING SO BADLY. It’ll be okay.

DO actually study.
DON’T waste your time making blog posts that people are too busy studying to read.

Good luck on finals, kids. May the odds be ever in your favor.