Mental Health/Wellbeing

Goal Setting As Motivation

When planning ahead for a trip, you may make a list or print out directions in order to ensure a good time. Not only does this get you more excited for the trip, but it helps you to get there in the smoothest way possible. This same process can be used for goal setting.

Goals can be desired end points for a plethora of things from fitness levels, to grades, to finishing a to-do list, to getting a future career. They can be big or small, hold a ton or very little importance. No matter what kind of goal you want to set, having a plan to reach that goal is vital.

Lists, charts, vision boards, Pinterest boards, art, etc. can all be ways to prepare for and pursue your specific goal(s). Some may think making goals out of small things is a waste of time, but I actually find it makes it more likely that I’ll reach that goal. Even if all I wanted to do was get a few loads of laundry done, when I actually do it I feel so successful and confident. This then of course affects other areas of my life in a positive way.

Especially with having anxiety, having goals allows me to properly manage my time and get things done with less stress. I know what I need to do, by when, and then the ‘why’ becomes so much more clear. This is true especially for things I have to get done for school or potential jobs that induce more anxiety. By letting myself see why I need to get it done, I’m actually encouraging myself.

Encouragement is one key to self success in goal setting, but so is the concept of reality. When setting a goal for yourself, you need to remember that you’ll only be let down if your desired turn out is actually impossible. Setting reasonable boundaries will allow you to create realistic and obtainable goals. As you continue to reach your different goals, your confidence will continue to grow.

Being someone who has been insecure many times, building up that initial confidence was hard. Once I got there though, it was like nobody could stop me. Achieving academic and health goals to me is like a high in itself. Knowing I put a healthy amount of pressure on myself and flourished because of it is so rewarding. The human body and brain are capable of so much there’s no sense in ignoring that. Goal setting, planning, and achieving allows you to see your strength in its entirety.

I’m a strong believer in pushing yourself while also staying in tune with your mind and body. We’re all unique individuals and finding tactics that help you get in the groove of life will aid in a more content life.

By laying everything you want to see happen out in front of you, it makes it easier for you to put together the puzzle that eventually gives you the whole picture. Dreaming, while fun, is not a way to make things happen. It’s the first step in progress, but also the most dangerous as you could easily live your whole life there if you don’t start to take charge of your own timeline bit by bitba1dc8d1235f073a71d116324d4c97e9.

P.S. I am also linking a TEDX Talk I really liked. Please take a look if you are interested in goal setting!

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Interviewing With Anxiety

When it comes to things like interviews, most people tend to get nervous as you have to answer questions about yourself in front of a stranger. Attending an interview with an anxiety disorder is these common nerves, but on the next level.

I typically find myself thinking things like “I’m going to mess up” or “I shouldn’t even do this” when I’m prepping/waiting for the meeting itself. These negative thoughts only help to increase that anxiety, which could end up resulting in self sabotage.

Recently, I’ve had three different interviews for jobs and I decided to pay attention to the things I do to help me prep. By trying to reduce my nerves at the same time as increasing my confidence, I had came out of each meeting feeling successful. I did this by:

Reviewing my cover letter, resume, application, and job listing to ensure I had my qualifications, the job requirements, and everything else fresh in my mind. It made me feel more ready to answer (and ask) questions. I also found that I become even more nervous when I over prep by practicing a bunch of questions/scenarios.

– Give yourself more than enough time to get ready and get to be interview. I just find it helpful to be relaxed, not rushed, directly before.

– Wear something you feel comfortable and confident in. This will show in your body language and facial expressions and adds to your first impression.

Smile. This also is key in initial impressions as it gives a hint of your personality. Friendliness is something desired by almost all employers.

Ask questions too. Just because you’re the future employee doesn’t mean you should be the only one answering questions. Yes, you need to be a good fit for the company, but they also need to be a good fit for you. It’s also useful to know anything that’s unclear to you so you can make an informed decision later in the process.

Remember that interviewers know how intimidating and nerve wracking answering questions about yourself is. Being nervous or showing signs of nervousness is not the end of the world, it’s only natural. True employers take this into account, and only focus on your qualities and skills in regards to desired ones.

Breathe. This is a simple one, but it’s the most useful. When you’ve done everything above (and maybe more) but you still are jittery, take slow, deep breaths. This slows your heart rate and can help you to think more logically about your stress. This can be done whenever you start thinking about the interview, all the way up to two minutes before they call you in.

Furthermore, yes you’re going to be nervous. But that doesn’t have to define your interview. Small steps, like the ones above, can help you begin to get used to interviewing and social interactions in a way that’s less daunting.

No, I don’t like talking to strangers or answering questions about my strengths or weaknesses. But that part is bearable when I think about how much I can offer as an individual.

As I’ve said before, you can’t let your anxiety control you but you can learn to better manage it. Simple calming, centering, or focusing techniques can do a world of wonders during an anxiety attack. They can also help in preventing one during, or leading up to important occasions.

Go in there and remember to be you. That’s all there is to do really. If you don’t get hired, that’s okay. It was good practice, and there are always more opportunities out there.

Interviews suck, but they’re a large part of adult life and something people have to work towards before they feel even close to comfortable.

Mental Health/Wellbeing

Organization Can Change Your Life

Have you ever been looking for some object you needed in that moment and thought to yourself “I wish I was more organized, then this wouldn’t be happening!”? It can be very frustrating.

Over the years, my anxiety has almost trained me, in a way, to be prepared for anything and everything to happen. Now, I am insanely organized and would never go back. Mainly, having some type of order can aid in providing a sense of security. One less thing to stress about in that moment. Who doesn’t need less stress?

This comes in handy everyday, but especially on busy or otherwise nerve-wracking days. These tips I am going to list below are not the only ways to get organized. I always fall back on Pinterest to get new, fresh ideas and 100% recommend that if you don’t find something you like here or want to add a few more ideas to this list. It’s all personal preference!

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Above is my desk. I try to keep it as clean as I can, and set up so that I know where basically everything is. You can do this by:

  • The use of containers of some sort for pencils/pens, paperclips/push pins, etc.
  • Getting a smaller lamp as it will take up less space
  • Purchase or make a file/paper holder ( I have 2: the purple stacked one, and the one holding my notebooks/folders)
  • Get rid of ANYTHING you don’t need including papers; if there is something you need to keep but it has no reason to be out currently, I suggest you make a space either in a closet or large drawer for school/work/other that is separate from your regular desk/office area to lessen overwhelm

I also try to make it a key point to make my working area visibly pleasing and relaxing. That way, when I am bombarded with school work, or my anxiety is creeping in, I can take a small break and regain focus. I did this by:

  • Adding the ‘Happiness’ quote canvas (I got it at a yard sale!)
  • Putting up photographs of my boyfriend and I because he is my rock and so inspiring (and handsome!)
  • A wall calendar with only major plans/appts/due dates (not as scary when everything you HAVE to do isn’t always right in front of you)
  • Photographs of me and my ASU buds
  • University memorabilia/awards for encouragement
  • A white board (I like putting up weekly inspiring quotes on mine)
  • Daily to-do lists (small lists of things to get done are more likely to make you do it rather than a super long list that seems impossible)

Overall, I don’t treat my desk as a dreadful place like some might do. The workload that I associate with my work space is not daunting, it’s empowering. If you can alter your mindset into seeing the positive twist on things especially like homework or work endeavors, you will feel better and thus work better. Your work should encourage you; you’re only advancing because of it, even if you don’t always see it right away.

Of course there are other ways to bring organization into your life. I won’t be getting in to detail about every way I stay organized as that would take too long, but I am going to provide a brief list in hopes to get your creative juices flowing:

  • My closet (organize by type of clothing/color/season)
  • My purse (always have important things you might need)
  • My backpack (same as purse, but w/ some school things too)
  • My routine (I set aside a few minutes each morning and night right before/after bed to clean up our room, wash my face, etc.; self care!)
  • My plans (I have 3 calendars: Google linked both on computer and phone, wall calendar big events, and school planner for everything including weekly homework schedules)(Planning ahead can help with effective time management)
  • My goals (when setting goals it’s important to have them be realistic and prepare a solid path to reaching them; this can be done in so many ways!)

If you weren’t very organized before, I do hope I encouraged you just a little bit. If you already are organized, I hope you related to this post and ask you to share your ideas. I wanted to share these hacks because I know how greatly they’ve impacted my life in a good way. Stress is a b*tch so I wanted to share a way in witch I take ‘her’ down.