Sleep, Eat and be Stress-Free

And we are back to the grind Warhawks. Break is over and its time to get back to reality. School is back in session and its time to get back into our regular routine but with a few modifications to start your semester off strong. Below are a few tips to help with getting back into the swing of things, starting the semester strong and keeping a positive atmosphere for your mental, physical, and emotional well-being.

  1. Train your brain. Think of your brain as just another muscle in your body. The more you exercise your brain, the stronger and healthier you will feel. 
  2. Know what resources are available on campus. Campus recourses are here to support and help you to. For example, if you are looking for after or during college jobs, Career and Leadership Development is here to help. Or if you need help relaxing, the UHCS has a relaxation room to help students practice relaxation skills to help their overall wellbeing. 
  3. Try and balance school, work and social life. Make time for yourself, your work and your schooling. After syllabus week, look over the syllabus schedule to see how much time and dedication each class you are taking needs, schedule your work with what works best for how much time you want to work and how much time you can work (Find a happy medium) and make sure you schedule time for yourself or for time with your friends. 
  4. Get enough sleep. Sleep is very important and you want to make sure that you are getting enough sleep before the semester even starts so you are able to wake up and start each day fresh.
  5. Eat right and healthy to maintain a positive mindset. By eating healthy you will feel better about yourself and have a more positive attitude. 

Each of these tips can help students like you and me feel better about the semester ahead of us. We will be able to have a positive outlook on what’s coming for us ahead. We can live a stress-free semester by remembering and embracing these useful tips. Work hard this coming semester Warhawks and remember that with a positive atmosphere and by taking care of yourself, anything is possible!

Emma O’Connor

Start Strong, Finish Stronger

You Define YOU!

Man the semester flew by and just like that winter break is almost over. Most of us will be returning to Whitewater getting back into the full time student mode with hopes of passing all of our classes. For most students, they strive to receive good grades like A’s and B’s whether it be because they want to have a high GPA or need to prove it to ourselves or someone else that we are more than capable and put hard work into what we do. I myself this past semester had a hard time of not letting my grades define who I am. 

If you are a student like me, you strive to get A’s and B’s because you put a lot of work into your classes, miss out on events and have a hard time focusing on anything else. Because I have been a student for so long, I feel as though my grades need to define me and who I am, when really a grade doesn’t determine who you are. I have come to terms with the fact that I might not always have the highest grade or be the best in class, and I am and have to be okay with it because grades aren’t everything. Below are reasons why for your next semester to let grades not define you entirely. 

  1. Your grades don’t reflect all of your abilities. Some things can’t be tested.
  2. A grade just shows that you learned how to study for a test. It is what you comprehend and apply in your life that matters. 
  3. There are different types of intelligence, you spotlight what makes you standout and unique. 
  4. What brings you happiness and what your passion is matters more. If you don’t have a passion for it, you aren’t going to care as much. Whatever makes you happy brings more opportunities. 
  5. You can shape your intelligence over time. You will learn new things everyday. What you learn and are tested on doesn’t define you for life. 
  6. You define what you are capable of. No one else knows what you can do except yourself. Remember you are capable to do great things and by doing that, it will take time and it is okay to fail. 

It is healthy for you to remember that your grades and retaining of information font define you. You will have more happiness and less stress in your life if you choose to do what makes you happy, focus on the important things, and remember your grades in school don’t define who you are. You define who you are, what makes you unique and you will be successful and less stressed because you aren’t focusing on a letter. Your grades do matter, but what you learned matters more in any aspect. 

Emma O’Connor

Start Strong, Finish Stronger

New Year, Renew Me!

Welcome back Warhawks! I hope everyone had a lovely Holiday season and a very merry new year! New years is all about remember the best of times in the old so you can embrace the new. There is that cliché sayings “new year, new me” which means to start the new year a new person or to be something better. I think that saying is a little far-fetched. Everyone says they are going to be a new person and set “new goals” for themselves in the new year that most don’t even accomplish or continue after January. I believe that the new year shouldn’t be about a new you, but rather be “new year, renew me”, a more updated and continuous piece of work.

            Some friendly advice I can give to you readers and that I am using for myself is to start the year of strong and to just revamp yourself, not create a whole new you. If creating a “new me”, you’re 80% more likely to drop your resolution by the second week. By sticking to who you are and making some modifications whether they are short term or long-term goals, you are more likely to follow through and improve who you are. Below are a couple ways to stick to who you are and accomplish your goals without feeling like you need to be a new person to do so.

  1. Have your goals be really narrow and specific. Make them your SMART goals and the more specific you are, the more you will actually accomplish. For example, instead of saying you want to lose weight, write how much weight you want to lose.
  2. Have meaning and thought behind each of your goals. The more thought and personal your goal, the more drive you have to accomplish it.
  3. Have positivity in your goals to avoid temptation and have more willpower.
  4. Set your goals, then aim higher. Once you set your goals, you should work to achieve them if not exceed them. For example, if you are wanting to run a mile, aim to do a marathon.
  5. And for the last piece of advice, focus on you and the process. Improve yourself one step at a time and remember why you are doing it. Achieve the unknown

Do what is best for your Warhawks and embrace the new year with the new and improved you. Don’t be a whole new person just because it is a new year. The more you stick to yourself and just revamp you, the more likely you are to accomplish those goals. You can set goals over night, but it takes time to accomplish them. So put the hard-work in, be specific and do it for you! You got this, Warhawks!

Emma O’Connor

Start Strong, Finish Stronger

Attitude of Gratitude

Being Grateful and Feeling Content

Every year during the season of Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years, we all focus a little extra on feeling grateful.  Throughout the holidays we get into the spirit of giving, loving one another, and feel thankful for all of the blessings in our life.  This time of year, blessings may come in waves or a Chrsitmas miracle may find its way into your life. However, once the fun ends or the day has passed, we may not all feel the overwhelming presence of gratitude.  Maybe this time of year you’re not exactly where you want to be in life or perhaps things aren’t really going your way as this season can bring different hardships. 

 In this week’s blog, I’ll be discussing gratitude and contentment and what those two words realistically look like in our daily lives.

If a friend were to ask me to list specific things I’m grateful for, it would be an easy list to come up with.  I would say…

  • I’m grateful for shelter and the home I get to live in.
  • I’m grateful for the endless amounts of food I have at my disposal.
  • I’m grateful for the higher education I am currently receiving. 
  • I’m grateful for the multiple jobs I have to make a living. 
  • I’m grateful for having a healthy and able body.
  • I’m grateful for my freedoms and the protection my country provides. 
  • I’m grateful for friends and family. 

… Just to name a few as the list could go on and on.

Now if the same friend asked why I’m grateful for those things, that would be an easy question to answer as well.  I would say… 

  • I’m grateful for shelter and the home I get to live in because I know so many people are homeless and don’t have a warm or safe place to stay. 
  • I’m grateful for the endless amounts of food I have at my disposal because not everyone has access to any amount of clean and nutritious food or even food at all. 
  • I’m grateful for the higher education I am currently receiving because so many people don’t get the opportunity to learn or get an education. 
  • I’m grateful for the multiple jobs I have to make a living because I know so many others struggle to make ends meet or are unable to get a job to provide for themselves or their family.
  • I’m grateful for having a healthy and able body because so many others are sick or disabled. 
  • I’m grateful for my freedoms and the protection my country provides because I know others live in a hostile, dangerous, or war stricken country with no place to feel safe.  
  • I’m grateful for friends and family because I know many others have had a loved one pass away or are currently lacking a loving support system.

Now what if that same friend asked me how long my gratitude lasts or how often the feeling of gratefulness washes over me?

Well, there lies the problem.  All of those times of gratitude are short lived or based upon something or someone else’s condition.  I don’t think anyone has a problem of feeling grateful when you compare yourself or your life circumstances to people at war, or others who are homeless, or those who go with eating only one meal a day, or someone who’s suffering from a serious life threatening health condition.  It’s an easy assumption to make that we all feel appreciative or thankful for what we have, looking at those different situations

The challenge however, is feeling grateful for what we have when we compare ourselves to others who have more.  It’s funny how our gratitude and full hearts slowly begin to disappear when you step into someone’s brand new glamorous home, or when you walk through the mall and see all of the “must haves” in trending winter fashion.

If we were to add a “dot, dot, dot” after each thing we are grateful for, it might go a little like this:

  • I’m grateful for the higher education I am currently receiving because so many people don’t get the opportunity to learn or get an education…but I wish I was smarter and could get A’s in all my classes to pass with honors and guarantee a job after graduation.  
  • I’m grateful for the multiple jobs I have to make a living because I know so many others struggle to make ends meet or are unable to get a job to provide for themselves or their family…but I wish I was manager of my team so I could have a higher paying job and afford a wealthy lifestyle.  
  • I’m grateful for having a healthy and able body because so many others are sick or disabled…but I wish I looked like that super fit girl/guy I see in the gym all the time and had a better body.

This is where change needs to happen to live a truly and continuously grateful life.  I think we all need to work on finding contentment with gratitude rather than just little bursts of gratitude here and there. 

If we can work towards being grateful despite who or what we’re comparing ourselves to, then we can develop a more deep and real sense of gratitude that lasts instead of the short lived gratefulness that comes when we make a comparison to others with less  or the feeling we get when we reflect on our life/accomplishments each year. 

I think it’s also beneficial to point out that contentment doesn’t mean you don’t have goals or things you’re striving to change in your life.  It simply means not allowing your “wants” to take over and not letting your “dot, dot, dots” keep you from your sense of gratitude. 

As we all focus on gratitude this holiday season, it’s important to also focus on contentment too.  It’s not just about being grateful for what you have that others don’t. It’s more about being grateful for what you have in spite of what others have that you don’t. 

Gratitude and contentment challenge: Pay attention to what steals your gratitude in each moment and make an effort to feel grateful and content with you and you alone when it’s the most difficult. 

I hope you enjoyed this week’s blog and have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

As always, stay fit, stay healthy, stay beautiful Warhawks.

Talk soon,

Ashley Borowski