Saturday, April 15, 2017

How to Find Motivation When You Don't Want to Do Anything

A couple days ago, I was sitting at the kitchen table thinking about everything and absolutely nothing at the same time. I was thinking about how I had a million things to do, but I didn't want to do any of it. Now, that's something that's not new. I get that feeling all the time. But this time, it was a little bit different. Over the days prior to this realization, I knew that something just wasn't quite right. For some reason, all of the things that I usually do to make me happy, just didn't make me feel good anymore. I felt hopelessly unmotivated to do anything, not even to indulge in the things that I once loved. So what was wrong with me? It felt like I was losing myself, like I was walking around empty. So how could I re-discover that motivation that I once had?


It's so difficult to stay motivated. Most of the time when I'm unmotivated, I come home, sit in my bed, and watch Netflix for hours. And that was what I had been doing for the past few days. However, in my opinion, there are two kinds of a lack of motivation: the need to procrastinate and the loss of passion. The need to procrastinate is the every day lack of motivation, where you might have a huge paper due the next day, but you're doing everything and anything in order to avoid working on it because you just can't seem to motivate yourself to get going. Loss of passion comes in waves, much less often than the need to procrastinate. The loss of passion describes those periods where you just can't find the motivation to indulge in things that you're usually interested about, you just can't find the passion to get going and take action.

So let's tackle these forms of motivation separately, since I believe that they are very different and also have different solutions.


HOW TO GET MOTIVATED WHEN PROCRASTINATING


one // remind yourself why this task is important

Sometimes getting motivated just takes remembering why you're even doing whatever task it is. With so much happening in life, especially if this is a task that you have been working on for a very long time, it can end up feeling like a chore after a while. Remind yourself why you're even bothering to do this. Whether it's something that you're passionate about that you're just procrastinating or it's something like a paper, you have to remember what you're working towards. Maybe you're working towards finishing a huge project or maybe you're working towards getting an A on that research paper. Regardless of what the task is, there's a reason why you're doing it and sometimes you just need to remind yourself that.

two // visualize what will happen if  you don't finish this task

This one is kind of similar to the last tip, but I feel that this way is a bit more of a stress-inducer in order to get the motivation, rather than something more positive. For me, sometimes I just need a little scare, a little stress that motivates me to get up and start going. I know that they usually tell you to "think happy and positive thoughts", but you don't really need to envision the good things that will happen to you, but you need to envision the consequences, the bad things that might happen if you keep on procrastinating. Let's say you have an exam coming up. If you keep procrastinating studying, you can visualize a poor grade. By visualizing a poor consequence that you don't want to see, it will get your stress going so that you'll feel more inclined to finish the task and make the image of the negative consequence disappear.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

How to Fit More Sleep into Your Schedule

I love sleep. Everyone loves sleep. But sometime's it's just so hard to make time for it. We lead busy lives, always trying to make the most of each day, whether it means staying up all night to finish a paper or trying to arrange your schedule to fit in some time with friends or even trying to make best use of your time by doing something that makes you happy. As we struggle to try and fit everything in our lives into this constraining 24 hours, often, one of the first things to go is sleep. They always say that you can't have it all, but you can at least try, starting with sleep. I know lots of people that stay up for long periods of time and complain about not getting enough sleep, but I personally get eight hours in every night. Because I believe that sleep is important and I make sure to make time for it. Here are my tips for how you can manage to get to bed earlier and catch a little more rest. 

How to Make More Time for Sleep - Sunny Rebecca

Set a bedtime. 

This is essentially the most useful way that you can fit more sleep into your schedule, but it's also the one that people are most reluctant to do. You're not a kid anymore, I get it, you've grown out of bedtimes, but that doesn't mean that they still can't benefit you. I mentioned this on my post about how to minimize stress, because getting more sleep is not only good for the soul, but also for your body. Setting a bedtime is like setting a deadline. This is the time that I need to be in bed, which means that this is the time that everything needs to be done. Just like the way you would make sure to get a paper done in time for the due date, setting a bedtime allows you to have a designated time to get everything done by. Not only does it encourage you to be more productive, but by setting a bedtime, preferably the same time every day, you also create routine, allowing your body to get more used to the same sleeping time every day. This will make it easier for you to fall asleep at night and it will also make it easier for you to wake up in the morning, so you'll feel nice and refreshed. If you can't bring yourself to set a bedtime for yourself (although I highly suggest it) I have some other quick fixes that will help you make more time that you can use for sleep, don't you worry!

Make to-do lists.

For all you type-A people, I'm sure that you already do this, but if you're looking to save time, make a to-do list. If you're really in a time crunch, make a detailed one, with time frames to do everything you need to do. Recently, I've been trying to maximize my time and productivity, so I created a tentative schedule/to-do list for the day. I got everything done and got to sleep right on time. Your to-do list will encourage you to get things done quicker (because there's nothing like checking off a box on a to do list - so satisfying!) and be more productive, allowing you to finish everything earlier, then for you to go to sleep earlier. If you're doing a time-based list, you can put your designated bedtime in, which will remind you to keep on track and adhere to the given times of the schedule. I suggest a schedule if you're really running low on time and have a super packed schedule, but for a normal day, a to-do list will be more than enough.

Braid your hair after taking a shower.

This tip is very specific to people that take night showers. I always air dry my hair, but this tip could still work for people that blow dry their hair. If you take a shower at night, there are some times that you just really want to get to bed, but your hair is wet and you have to deal with blow drying it or air drying, which could cost your precious time. I like to braid my wet hair after I take a shower so that I can immediately go to sleep with them in, saving me time at night and allowing me to get to bed earlier. In addition, you can get more time to sleep in the morning, since when you wake up, your hair will be styled in neat waves, so you can cut down on hair styling time, which is especially useful for people who have high-maintenance hair routines.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Why Doesn't Anyone Like Me?

It's a universal desire to want to be liked. Maybe because we're a social species, but there's just this feeling about us that makes us want to be accepted and liked by our peers. Even sometimes when we say to ourselves that we don't care whether or not our peers like us, there's a small part inside of you that is still eager to be accepted. And I'll admit it, I like to be liked. I don't like when other people don't like me. I know that I'm obviously not perfect, but I still have tons of great qualities that I feel like other people like in a person. But as a teenager, sometimes it feels like no one likes you, like maybe they don't value you as much as someone else (like a non-committal friendship) and honestly, it kind of hurts. So how can you get over this feeling?


As a part of the Peter Pan Diaries series, if you haven't been updated, here's a brief summary about what the mini-series is about:
The Peter Pan diaries is a mini-series covering the various struggles, ups and downs, and giving guidance on the teen years. The Peter Pan series is for the people out there that are growing up, mostly aimed at the young adult years, but how they might not necessarily be ready to grow up yet, almost like Peter Pan. They're meant to help make the transition a little bit easier and also allow me to give my personal experiences and my perspectives on some struggles and controversial topics regarding teen life and being a young adult. 


In the day and age of social media, it's all about being liked. Whether it means that your Instagram photo gets 100 likes instead of 90 or it means having 200 Facebook friends instead of 150, I think that we're constantly surrounded by numbers. The number of people that like us. Sarah has 1,000 followers. I only have 200. Everyone likes her. That's the mistake that we often make, mistaking numbers for true friendship. I feel like in the age of social media, the need to be liked has become amplified. Suddenly, it's so much more obvious who has more "friends", who is more "liked", and who is "better" than us. It's no longer just about spending time with your friends, but it's also about the public appearance of friendship. The public appearance of popularity and being liked. 

It constantly feels like no one likes you, like just because you don't have as many friends constantly surrounding you, it means that you have no one. But that isn't true. The thing about being liked is that there is a difference between being truly liked and just giving off the appearance of being liked. Maybe it looks like Sarah has it all. She always has a circle of friends around her and she never looks lonely. But that doesn't mean that she isn't lonely. I think that sometimes we forget that. We let all of these illusions get to us. While you are sitting there, complaining about how no one likes you, maybe, just maybe, Sarah is doing the same thing. The truth is that those numbers of social media aren't true. Sarah doesn't have 1,000 friends, she might not even know half of those people that follow her. It's not that she's more liked than you are, maybe her pictures on Instagram get more likes, but that doesn't equate to the amount of love she receives from others.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

8 Outdoor Activities to Do

Happy April! Although it doesn't quite feel like Spring yet (at least to me), it's Spring and Summer is just around the corner. As the weather heats up, I think that it would be a good idea to get out of our beds and get outside. While I may love staying indoors, watching movies and drinking warm tea, it's still a good idea to engage in some new activities that are more fitting to the season. Because of that, I've compiled a list of some fun, warm weather activities that you can enjoy during the Spring and eventually the summer.

8 Outdoor Activities to Do - Sunny Rebecca

One // Go geocaching.

"What's geocaching?" you ask. Well, geocaching is essentially like a scavenger hunt, except you use a GPS and navigational techniques in order to find geocaches (also called caches), which hidden boxes with treasure in them. This treasure isn't necessarily a pot of gold, but there are objects placed inside by previous geocachers and you may take them from the box, as long as you exchange them for something else. Going geocaching is basically like being a kid trying to find a treasure chest with his/her trusty treasure map. The main difference is that it's for adults. I have not been geocaching before, but I have always wanted to and actually have plans to do so later in the week. The nice things about it is that it's a great way to spend time with nature, as a lot of geocaching locations are in nature-based spots and there are so many geocaches all around you, no matter where you live. It's crazy to know that there are so many. Here's how to get geocaching: https://www.geocaching.com/play

Two // Plant something. 

I'll be honest, I definitely don't have a green thumb, but recently I've been learning that it's not impossible to garden. Although it seems kind of like caring for a small child, many plants are not as high-maintenance as you think. Whether you plant something from seed or you develop a young plant, gardening can be rewarding when you see that your work has finally paid off. I just started planting some vegetables, but I think that herbs are also a great idea for things to garden. I grew basil before and it was so nice to get that fresh basil to put in my meals. Personally, I think that gardening edible plants are a lot more rewarding than flowers, because your hard work pays off when it's harvesting time. However, if you feel like gardening some flowers, go for it! Do your research before (and during) the gardening process, but obviously the most important thing to know is how much sun and water the plant needs. Although a challenge, who knows? Maybe you'll get a green thumb. 

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Style Spotlight: Swimsuits

I know that it's still technically March, but summer and warm weather is just around the corner. If you're looking to buy a new swimsuit, right now is the best time, as there are the most options around this time of year, which is why I decided to put the style spotlight on swimsuits. I'm focusing on the swimsuits that I have and giving my reviews on them, while also focusing on the importance of a good fitting swimsuit, as with each swimsuit, I'm making new realizations about the things that I like and I don't like in a swimsuit that I didn't quite notice before. 

Style Spotlight: Swimsuits - Sunny Rebecca

A Brief History of the Swimsuit

Heading to the beach as a leisurely activity came into light around the 1800s. Although it wasn't quite the bikini that we know today, but rather dresses for walking down the shore. It wasn't until the mid-nineteenth century that women began venturing into the water, away from the shore, in their baggy flannel pants and flannel dresses. Soon they began taking over sailor-inspired styles, heading closer to the modern swimsuit that we know today. The graduation from shoreline to swimming was most notably during the 1900s in the 20th century, as women began to stop wearing skirts and long sleeves for real swimsuits that they could actually move freely about in. They showed a lot more of the female figure (scandalous!) As styles became more attractive and flattering, the bikini emerged in 1946. Created by Louis Reard, naming the style after Bikini Atoll, the site of nuclear tests, this scandalous look was debuted in Paris. It received mixed reactions, even becoming banned in some countries. Eventually it caught on. From then to even now, the idea of an "itsy-bitsy-teeny-yellow-polka-dot-bikini" was everywhere and the bathing suits revealed a lot more skin. However, today, we are in a period of body acceptance, offering a lot more variety of swimsuits than the typical bikini or the retro sailor-inspired look. They are changed to be more appealing to a range of body sizes, as well as body shapes. 

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Earth Hour Party

This Saturday, March 25th at 8:30-9:30pm in your local time is Earth Hour. It's essentially a set time where mass numbers of people power off. This means no lights, no technology, no electricity. (However, I think heat is okay!) The point of Earth hour is to increase awareness for global warming and spread the message about sustainability rather than actually saving energy. Although there is some controversy regarding global warming, I personally believe that regardless of whether or not it exists, we should still play our part in caring for the planet. Earth Hour doesn't have to be about sitting in the dark and I encourage you to throw a party to make it fun while also helping raise awareness.

Earth Hour Party - Sunny Rebecca

Mood Lighting

The lights are out. Now what? Spruce your party up with some mood lighting. Light some candles, add some aesthetically pleasing lanterns, put out those battery powered string lights, and use them to light up the party. Just because the lights are out for Earth Hour, doesn't mean that the party isn't lit. I think that the lighting and the ambiance makes the party just entirely different. Sure, lots of parties are dark, but this one is illuminated by candles, pretty golden lanterns, and more. The atmosphere of the candles just makes for a very calming, wind-down kind of party. 

Activities

All the time when I go to parties, we have this issue of cell phones. We're constantly distracted by them that it's often difficult to actually get through activities without people losing interest or putting the game on hold in order to check their updates on their phone. For Earth Hour, there are countless activities that you can do with your friends. Here are some ideas:

Painting

You don't have to be the next Van Gogh or Frieda Kahlo in order to have fun painting. Did you know that there are literally classes made for people that don't know how to paint to just drop by, paint a simple template (while drinking wine)? You can do the same at home. Look up some simple painting tips, set out a still-life or what not, and have all your guests try their hand at painting, no matter how much experience they have with it.


Saturday, March 18, 2017

I Swapped Clothes with a Friend for a Week

They say that you can't fully understand someone until you step into their shoes, but what about their clothes? Quite a few months ago, I decided to swap clothes with a friend for a week. My friends and I have a list of challenges to do, encouraging each other to step out of our comfort zones and try these challenges in order to rack up points. One of these tasks was swapping clothes with someone for a week. And I accepted the challenge.

I Swapped Clothes with a Friend for a Week - Sunny Rebecca



I just wanted to put it out there that this occurred in August or September of 2016, but it never really occurred to me to write about it until now. Although I don't have outfit pictures for every day of the clothing swap, I wanted to focus on the process and what the experience was like, because at the end of the day, clothes are just clothes. For the challenge, we also decided that this was going to be a full-on clothing swap. That meant that we weren't just going halfway, switching a top with someone else, but we were going with the full look, including accessories, but excluding shoes.