The Routine.

Last night, for the first time in a long time, I kind of had a nervous break down. I sat down and started writing my to-do list for the next few weeks and I realized something, I’m in way over my head. Maybe it’s the stress from the school year that has still yet to fully disappear or maybe I’m biting off more than I can possibly chew – nothing new there; either way, I had to call one of my closest friends and just vent.

The advice he gave me seemed so simple, “take each day as it comes and stop worrying.” Okay, he’s a hot-shot journalist in the making and I’m probably misquoting him and fitting the PR stereotype, but his advice was definitely something along those lines – I promise.

So what do the next few days mean after the pep talk from my good friend and post nervous break down? Change of routine.

  1. Plan out meals: I’ve lost weight since I returned to Austin. Not because I’ve been working out more, but more because I’m forgetting to eat most of the time or don’t realize just how much food I need to pack for lunch so that my stomach doesn’t start growing around 10 a.m. or 3 p.m.
  2. Get off the grid: if you know me well, you’ll know that I am attached to my phone and laptop – technology is my life, not only in my professional life, but also my personal life. My phone is usually on silent, but I have the vibrate feature on, so it buzzes every five seconds from a text, phone call or email. Before going to bed, I vow to put my phone on silent, shut down my laptop and just sleep as a normal person is intended to.
  3. Go to bed before midnight: this is more of a personal problem. No matter how tired I am from being at the office, I can never seem to get myself to fall asleep before midnight. I’ll lay in my bed at 10 p.m., telling myself I’m going to fall asleep and then not actually falling asleep until a little past midnight. I have to be at the office at 8 a.m., so you can see why I strongly dislike this inability to sleep.
  4.  Relax: I have this note taped to a shelf on my desk that reads, “smile, don’t stress, stay classy.” In high school, my BC calculus teacher referred to me as his “little Asian ball of stress,” I know it was a term of endearment and he was probably one of the best teachers I’ve ever had, so I wasn’t offended at all. But the fact holds true, I stress out far too much and usually it’s about the little things that shouldn’t matter. But here’s the difference between my stress and the average person’s, I pent it up for as long as I can, which results in the hot mess of a break down.
  5. Forget the schedule: I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, my calendar is my life. I have always been one of those people who writes down everything she has to do and checks it off on a daily basis. The problem? By the time I figure out when to schedule my social life, everyone has already made plans. So here’s to being more lenient and actually making time for people who matter to me. I’m not saying I’ll just flake on professional or academic commitments, I’m just saying I’ll be more likely to agree to “Hey! I’m free right now, wanna have lunch?” if a friend requests it.
  6. Exercise: I’ve been doing this a little more often. I’ve learned that running calms me down – A LOT. I feel accomplished, productive and according to Legally Blonde, exercising releases endorphines and endorphines make people happy.
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