It’s a long weekend and I’ve planned a trip with a few of my friends. As an introvert, group travel can be difficult and I often feel home sick. Introverts get tired when they are out with a group of people, and need some down time alone to recharge. It’s not that I’m not comfortable with the friends I travel with, it’s just how introverts are. If you’re not sure if you are an introvert, check out this article from the Huffington Post to find out!
Hide in the Washroom
Not in some sad sort of way, but just to get some alone time. You’re usually sharing a room, an no matter how big the space is, you just need to be by yourself. When you’re in the washroom, do what you would normally do at home when you’re all alone. Personally, I like to go on my phone and play Candy Crush. I play this game at home after work because it requires no thinking, and it’s just a good little distraction. Sometimes I bring headphones with me and watch a few youtube videos, too. For you, it’s what ever you do when no one is around, and you’re just re-charging. Maybe you call your boyfriend or girlfriend, or maybe you reply to messages you haven’t responded to because you’ve been busy. Give yourself at least 15 minutes for this! You can wake up a bit earlier so no one is waiting for the washroom, or volunteer to use the washroom last after everyone is done.
Get into Bed a Bit Earlier
Most of us are afraid of missing out, that’s why on group trips, you don’t want to be the first to go to bed while everyone else is still up. If this is your mentality, it will be very difficult to no get anxious on a group trip and you’ll likely get very homesick. I used to be very afraid of missing out, but I realize my mental health is more important. If I stay up with other people and end up feeling anxious, I won’t enjoy it anyways. Plus, at the end of the night when everyone is back at the hotel room, there’s probably not too much to miss out on. When you get into bed early, it doesn’t mean you need to go to sleep. Again, take this time to do what you would have normally been doing at home. Do you read a book before bed at home? Do you catch up on the news? Maybe you listen to music to fall asleep. Imitate what you would do at home and it will feel more like home.
Unpack your Bag
I learned this trick years ago while reading someone’s blog. When you’re away on a trip and living out of a suitcase, it’s hard to make it feel like home. If you are an introvert, having the same wake up and getting ready for bed routine is very important. It gives you time to pause and get ready for the day, and time to rest and digest at the end of the night. When you’re things are packed in bags, it basically impossible to have the same routine. We leave things in suitcases and bags out of convenience, and to make checking out easier, but it’s not worth it if you’re an introvert. Give this one a try the next time you’re on a group trip!
Don’t Stress About Packing Everything
If you’re an introvert on a group trip, you want to minimize your stress as much as possible. Make a list and pack what’s on it, but there’s no need to check, and re-check over and over again. It’s very unlikely that you will forget something essential, and even if you do, you can always buy it when you get to your destination. Yes, you end up spending a little more money, but no, it won’t be the end of the world.
Pack Your Bath Towel
I always get a strange and uncomfortable feeling using a hotel’s bath towel. I feel like something that I use so intimately should not belong to anyone but myself. I wouldn’t wear undergarments provided by the hotel, so I wouldn’t use their bath towel either. It might just be me, but it feels like I’m being touched by a stranger. When I’m on a group trip and trying to feel more like myself, I want to feel as at home as I can, so using my own bath towel from home helps me with that. At the very least, it's another item that makes it feel more like home
I hope these 4 tips help you on your next group trip! Now, I am off to pack for Vegas!
I volunteer at a yoga studio, and I love that place! Every week, I have very deep and meaningful talks with my colleagues/friends. One topic that came up and is still in the back of my mind is that, as you grow older and become more mature, you learn to appreciate the little things and the experiences more. Don’t get me wrong, having the ability to buy is still gratifying but my point is, I think that there is a difference between chasing materials and chasing experiences.
I did some thinking about my past.
In my teenage and young adult years, I remember thinking about earning money just to buy all the prettiest things. For the most part, I think everyone has this desire. I would buy so many beautiful clothes and accessories that I thought I would wear but I never ended up wearing them - some of which are still sitting in my closet. Isn’t this the craziest thing? It’s such a waste of money to only feel happy for a split of a second. I experience a lot of buyer’s remorse, to say the least.
In my mid-twenties, my group of friends have become smaller. I don’t think that is a bad thing though; I believe people drift apart because everyone learns to find their own direction and interests. What’s important is that I remember all the happy memories we have experienced together. Usually, the greatest memories are the birthday gatherings, 20-30 people all coming together just to have a beach day or a dinner. I think the gifts were a bonus – but I can barely remember what they were, what was important was everyone hanging out and laughing, and that’s what I actually remember.
Not too long ago, a few of my closest friends went on a girls’ trip to Los Angeles. It was a lot of fun! What made this trip so fun is that we shared the same interests and wanted to do the same things. We all went there to sightsee the city. The highlight of the trip was us getting lost and finding a place called The Grove. The scariest part of the trip was driving in Los Angeles traffic! At the end of it all, the memories and experiences will stay with me forever.
Even when I am not going on travel adventures with my friends, having coffee catch up time and study dates make me extremely happy. Why do you say? It’s because I don't feel that I am wasting my time. I know that the meet up will either make me laugh or teach me something. As I said, you just learn to appreciate the little things more.
Now that I’m almost turning 29, I think I realize that materialistic items only make me happy for a short while. Being older and more mature, I learn that the little things like spending time with family and friends, or going to find new adventures are going to make me happier.
With society and social media emphasizing and swaying you in different directions. You need to stop and think for a second to see what is actually going to make you happy in the long run. Will this add more value to your life? Is this worth your time? Is this worth your money? Is this going to bring you experience?
Please share some of your thoughts.
These couple of weeks I have many feelings of frustrations. With many school assignments, long weekends, and car issues all arising at the same time, it has put a toll on me. These factors all contribute to my frustration, and I didn’t recognize that I was hurting myself and others.
On June 26, 2018, my four-page essay assignment was due on midnight. Well, I did start the assignment over the weekend, but I didn’t really understand the topic and end up changing the topic at the last minute. So, at 6PM of that day, I was working on a paper that was going to be due in less than 6 hours. During that time, I was distraught with myself for improper planning. I was also upset because I did not reach out to my professor earlier for guidance. As a result, I ended up submitting a paper that did not meet the four-page requirement. Even after submitting the assignment, I remember being upset and come to a conclusion that I will receive a terrible mark. At that moment, I started complaining to the people around me, and even though they were trying to comfort me, I was being slightly rude to them. I did not realize this until my brother told me this, and that I was just overreacting and assuming the worse when I do not even have the results of the outcome yet. After a couple of days later, I received the mark for my assignment where I ended up getting a perfect mark. What a relief!
With some tears and stress from this situation, I asked myself why I reacted that way? Was it necessary? The answer is no.
Why do we always jump to our own conclusions? Why do we need to stop?
I think people come up with stories to tell themselves to fill the gap of negative uncertainty with their own imagination or thoughts derived from stories that they had heard before. Personally, I am a person that enjoys creating my personal stories and jumping to conclusions. I like to think that I can predict the outcome because I believe people do think similarly. The truth is, everyone's way of thinking is very diverse, and not all outcomes are predictable. In order to achieve more, I have learned that I need to let things play out, by not being so negative about every action I take that I have doubts about. If I was to just think of the worst case scenario all the time, then what would happen if some factor changes during a process? If the outcome is positive, then I have spent all that time stressing and feeling upset for no apparent reason, which is creating a burden on one self's mentality, which is unhealthy. Also, any negative emotions can spread onto the people that are around you without any awareness at all.
I also believe that by jumping to a conclusion, you do not believe in your own capability. This can damage your own confidence and self-esteem.
Of course, through some experiences, you could predict endings in some situation, and I think some of these predictions can impact you positively. In other time, overstressing about an issue can be damaging to yourself mentally and emotionally.
According to studies, jumping to conclusion is a negative type of thinking pattern, known as cognitive distortion. Cognitive distortion can impact on your feelings such as fear, stress and anxiety. You could read here: Cognitive Distortions: When Your Brain Lies to You.
I believe that feeling negative can have a spiraling effect. If you can recognize it sooner, you can change the outcome of your own thoughts.
How do we stop jumping to conclusions?
This will be something that I will still be working on myself, but I can say that it is not something achieved in overnight, but rather a long-term interval. Some actions that we could take to prevent jumping straight to conclusions are awareness, follow up on facts, do a check up on your mental state, and to always reflect back on the actions you have taken because all of these help you understand yourself more.
We need to be aware that when we are doing it. Don’t just jump to conclusion, remember the assumptions are just stories you make up.
We can identify facts versus the fiction. Facts are reality and are the truth. Fiction is something created by your imagination.
Do a checkup with your feelings? What are you feeling? If you are feeling anxiety, stress, and unpleasantness, asks yourself why and where this feeling is directed towards.
Lastly, always reflect on your actions because we only become better by dealing with these situations than to continue doing the same thing.
Four Ways to Practice Self-Love
My friend said to me, “be kinder to yourself.”
I ponder on that comment for quite some time. What does that even mean? As a part-time student and a full-time employee, I often find myself feeling stressed, tired and uncertain. Many of you would say, of course, it’s not an easy balance. Some of you are probably in the same situation. I am always judging myself for not being where I want to be in life and not getting there faster. Being tough on myself is important, but making sure to self-love is also an essential part of the process.
I am practicing self-love with these four actions. I hope they can help you too.
Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
I believe we can all agree that this is easy to say but hard to do. I still catch myself comparing myself to others, but now I know it is important to set boundaries. Especially, with social media being widely available to everyone, we are more likely to critique ourselves. I think it is important to remember, people on social media only show their best side. We need to acknowledge that we are all in different stages of our lives and everyone is different in how to they achieve their goals and dreams. So, don’t compare yourself to others but take their success and happiness as a way to inspire you to be better.
How often do you do take the time to do some self-reflecting? Or do you mindlessly spend day-by-day just daydreaming? When I was in my early 20’s, I would say, I often daydream and live day-by-day. After making some difficult decisions in my late 20’s, I am learning to re-discover myself through self-reflection. The main goal of regular self-reflection is to ask yourself thought-provoking questions that can help you develop a deeper level of understanding of yourself. By answering these questions, you will be able to make better choices that help you in achieving your goals in life.
I find this action quite difficult at times. I am an emotional person, and I take mistakes very personally. This is one of the flaws that I am working on to improve. For example, it could be as simple as receiving feedback for missing a date on a report. My supervisor would tell me not to sweat it, but I would feel bad about it for a long time. But what’s the point of feeling bad about it? I just need to be more careful next time and not make the same mistake.
If others can forgive so quickly, why can’t we do the same for ourselves? I think it is good we recognize our mistake and own up to it, but it’s important to move on. Continually dwelling on errors will cause more harm mentally and will hinder personal growth.
Have “Me” Time
What is “Me” time? My definition is doing things you love by yourself. Most of our schedule is busy and hectic. Some of you may work 40 plus hours a week, go to school, and have many social commitments to attend to. When do you have time for yourself? When will you make yourself a priority?
Finding time for yourself can be simple as sleeping in, going to a yoga class, going for a walk, or just reading a book. Whatever it is, it should make you happy to be by yourself. Of course, surrounding yourself with friends is entertaining but it can also be draining. I personally find that having my "me" time encourages me to know myself on a deeper level and appreciate it.
Self-love is a journey. It takes dedication, devotion, and practice. You are always challenging yourself to be a better you, so be kinder to yourself.
“We can never obtain peace in the outer world until we make peace with ourselves” – Dalai Lama.
The Best Things Happen When You Get Out of Your Comfort Zone and the Four Things I Learned
Do you sometimes want to do something different, but it seems like you always find an excuse to hold yourself back? I do. I have self-doubts because I don’t t think I have the confidence, skills, and abilities. With having these negative thoughts have hindered my growth and possibly made me miss many opportunities in life.
I don’t know when but I eventually realize that it was time to change my thoughts and step out of my comfort zone.
Four things that you will learn from stepping out of your comfort zone.
You Become More Independent
I was in a long-term relationship of 7.5 years. In the last couple of years together, I came to realize our relationship wasn’t moving forward but I didn’t know if ending the relationship was the right choice. I was dependent on him, and I kept thinking our relationship would get better and something will change.
Over time, I finally admitted to myself that I am just comfortable being in the relationship even though I am not happy and so we ended. Getting out of this long-term relationship was scary, and many uncertainties were going through my mind. It was my first big step in getting out of my comfort zone to be on my own and so far, being on my own helped me discovered that I am a strong woman who can do many things on my own.
You Will Discover that There are Many Different Career Opportunities
Here is another long-term commitment of my life. I was working for a fast food company for ten years, and yes, this was my childhood job. Eventually, it was time for me to move on because my passion and interest didn't align with the company anymore. While updating my resume and job searching, I realize that I don’t have a lot of qualifications. So, I thought to myself, should I stay with the company because I knew that I could do the job and get a paycheck. But this was was the wrong choice, too.
So, I quit my job. Luckily my friend from a recruitment agency hired me and put many in many job placements. Now, I work in the agriculture industry that I didn’t even know it existed and I find my current job challenging and rewarding at the same time.
You Experience Challenge and Growth
Facing challenges in life forces you to put yourself in uncomfortable situations, and this is what makes a person grow. These situations enable you to learn new skills, adopt new habits and experience new things. For example, verbal communication can sometimes be challenging for me at work. I would have to think about what to say and how I am delivering my messages and if it is effective while considering who I am talking to. Over time, I have acquired new ways to communicate with different people at work through experiences and feedback.
I think that communication can be a consistent challenge to many people and can sometimes leave you in uncomfortable situations with the wrong choice of words. Read, A Deeper Dive: Communication Is Key, But why? To help you be more aware of effective communication. Being aware of how you communicate can help you move forward in work and life.
You Overcome Fears
No More “I Wish” and “I Can't-Do This” and more of “Just do it.” As mentioned previously in my blogs, writing is one of my fears. I had procrastinated for many years before I pursued blogging. From encouragement from my amazing friends, I finally did it. Here I am writing to the world. Now I know it’s not scary as I imagined.
I believe that getting out of your comfort zone helps you be a better version of you. At least you could say I’ve tried and I could see that I either succeeded or failed. If you don’t go for it, you will always ponder on what could happen. As we all know that time is a precious so don’t waste time.