My need to please people

Hi I’m Catherine and I’m a people pleaser. You could also interpenetrate that as code for lick arse but read this first and see what I have to say.

I’ve always been this way. I like making people happy.  Since I was young I’ve hated doing anything that would upset someone or make them slightly unhappy with me. And if I say something to hurt someone (because sometimes I’m stupid and my filter doesn’t work) I beat myself up and all the hurt I’ve inflicted on them I feel too ( I guess that also makes me empathetic).

I was was that annoying kid in school who agreed with everything you said. Oh you like that song? I do too! I never noticed it till someone pointed it out to me and like most habits, you don’t recognise you have them until someone makes you aware of it. I’m grateful for this person doing this even though at the time it made me acutely self aware of myself. Though this self awareness helped me more conscious that I should form my own opinions on things, I was still a huge people pleaser.

Always being ready to please people caused me to agree easily and not tread on people’s toes.  I just wanted to be liked. As you get older you realise you’re not going to make everyone happy. I’m not going to say that I still don’t strive to make others happy,  but I’ve gotten better at not making it my priority.

I’ve also gotten a lot better at not always agreeing with others. If anything I enjoy when people have different opinions to me, because it opens up the opportunity of a having a discussion. This can make for extremely interesting conversations.

I think it all comes down to finding the balance of makes others happy but not allowing your own thoughts and feelings to be jeopardised.

Do you struggle with feeling the need to please people?

Having a job while in college

This year I made the decision to take on a job while studying in college.

I’m very fortunate that I work enough during the summer in my very busy and my very touristy hometown that I can afford to fund my way through a year of college. (I am also extremely fortunate that my parents pay my fees and my rent, so they money I have is spent on food and everything else in between).

So during my first year of college I had no work and quite a lot of free time. I would look at my friends who were holding down a full time job while meeting deadlines in complete awe at how they managed to juggle it all.

I started second year excited for the oncoming year, but by Christmas college was boring me and everything felt like a bit of a repeat of first year without the glossy touch. By January rolled around I knew I needed a new challenge in my life.

After some deliberation I realised that starting a job in Dublin could be the change I was looking for. I was lucky enough that the company I work for in my hometown is also based in Dublin and I was able to secure hours up there.

Though this wasn’t originally how I planned things to go. My ambition was to find a job in Dublin with a bookshop or something similar that would be relevant to my course; but after handing out my CV’s to numerous businesses and hearing nothing back I decided for now, I should take advantage of what I have and stick with a job I could continue with up here.

One thing that I was certain about, was that this would be only a part time job and that college would always come first.

If you’re thinking of getting a job while in college I think the biggest piece of advice I can give to you is time management. Though I don’t do a crazy amount of hours a week, I still need to watch how I use my time and what pieces of college work I need to prioritise.

But it’s all worth it when Thursday rolls around and my wages land in to my bank account!

Having the opportunity to make an extra bit of money has given me the chance to save more. I’m always trying to look at the bigger picture, and I know at some stage in my life I’ll want to travel for a year or invest in a car, and I think now, when I don’t have a lot of commitments such as paying my own rent etc it’s the perfect time to save.

Working in a different shop that I’m not used to also allowed me to prove to myself that I have the capability to adjust to alternative environments. When I first started working up here, the idea of working somewhere different for the first time after three years was very daunting!

For me, I see working in Dublin as the gradual transition of me moving up here full time, which I see happening as part of my career eventually.

Though I know reading over this, working a few hours in Dublin doesn’t sound like a massive achievement, but for me the move was quite scary but also exciting because it’s another anchor securing itself in the soil of Dublin and tying me down with it.

Do you/ did you have a job while you were attending college?

How did you find it? Let me know below!

 

 

 

My Relationship with Alcohol

During the past year I’ve seen this discussion floating around the internet and it’s led to me thinking more about my mindset with alcohol.

To start off with, I do drink.

I was what some people would call a late starter to the whole drinking scene, and I didn’t have my first proper drink until I was seventeen during a work party. It was the one and only drink I had that night, and I went home feeling giddy and happy.

Even nowadays I don’t drink an awful lot. I never had the wild teenage years where I’d pre drink at friends house, sneak naggins into nightclubs or get sick in the taxi home. Do I think I missed out? No. I think if any of those scenarios had happened I would have hated it. I’ve only begun to enjoy drinking recently and that’s because I do it with people I feel comfortable with.

Some of my best memories have been when I’ve been drinking. Getting tipsy with my friends in my local pub, falling into a deep conversation with my friend in the smoking area or pulling my friends on to the dance floor to an over played pop song.

I drink for two reasons:

I drink because it gets me drunk. Typing that out makes me sound like I have issues, but let me put it into more context. Friends after college may enthusiastically suggest a few cocktails and I decline.What’s the point in buying two cocktails for twelve euro at five o’ clock in the day when I’ll just be going home afterwards. It’s expensive and I’m not getting the buzz.

I also drink because I feel awkward if I’m with a group of people and I’m the only one not drinking. That sounds like peer pressure but I don’t feel any pressure to do it, I just prefer not to be the only one sober.

I suppose these reasons sound like I have an unhealthy mindset but I think this is the way society portrays the way we treat drink and I’ll admit I’ve been conditioned to think this way.

But at the same time alcohol isn’t effecting my life negatively so feeling this way towards drink doesn’t bother me.

Though I sometimes do panic that I don’t go out enough compared to other students my age. I’m told that college is the best years of my life and I’ll regret it when I’m older that I didn’t take advantage and get drunk more often. But in these moments I remember what my (very wise) friend once told me.

“You’ve been worrying that you don’t go out enough since you were fifteen. Going out and getting drunk all the time isn’t you and you shouldn’t feel ashamed to do that. If going for lunches or coffee dates is how you socialise that is completely fine. You shouldn’t constantly put this pressure on yourself to socialise in a situation that you don’t enjoy all that much”.

So there you have it, I have a pretty stable relationship with drink, but it’s not 100% positive all the same.

Can you relate? What’s your relationship with alcohol?

Life without egg & dairy !

Hello lovely people! What you may or may not know is that I once took egg and dairy out of my diet for a whole year. I know that many people decide to cut out certain foods out of their everyday life for one reason or another.  This blog I’ll go through my reasons to choose this lifestyle, how I found it, and why I eventually gave it up.

 

For my whole life I’ve suffered with a common skin condition called eczema. For anyone that is unfamiliar with it, it’s basically where you have very sensitive skin and your skin can often be red and dry. Having eczema often left me really self-conscious and I would usually get my eczema baldy on my neck or arm. Curious classmates would turn to me and innocently ask “what was wrong with my skin”.  I hated it, and along with all this I would often be restricted from using a lot of skin care and make up products because of the uncertainty with how my skin would react. My doctor was well acquainted with me and with each visit of me nearly in tears because of my appearance he would continue handing out different types of special creams that would clear up the problem but never fully got rid of it.

 

I was always up to trying out new ideas and products to combat my eczema and one day mom asked me “what if it’s what your eating?” This idea had never dawned on us before and we decided to look into it. I went to my local nutritionist and got a blood test done, within a week it came back that I was allergic to egg and dairy. As a pure lover of all things chocolate and cheese this news came as a shock for my thirteen year old self. But my mom who had a full lifetime experience of my eczema clung onto this piece of news with hope. With her encouragement we set about filling ourselves with knowledge on the whole idea of living life without egg and dairy. Cow milk was replaced with rice milk, soya butter was used instead of regular butter and I set about the kitchen trying to teach and create my own recipes. I learnt how to make my very own vegan chocolate chip cookies using an egg replacer from the company Orgran (http://www.orgran.com/products/174/) If you’re wondering, it’s basically powder mixed with water.

 

Truthfully it was a tough year. Firstly I didn’t receive any support from my doctor who scoffed when he found out what I was doing and criticised me by saying that people who cut out calcium in their lives only ended up having osteoporosis. Secondly managing a diet without egg and dairy is easy when you’re in your own home. But I found socialising outside of home with the temptation of food all around me very hard. Going for meals wasn’t the same, if anything it was depressing looking at a menu full of food that I couldn’t eat. Because let me tell you this, EVERYTHING has egg and dairy in it. Food is such a main part of everyday life and when you put restrictions on your self on what you can and cannot eat, it is naturally hard. But more importantly did these changes in my diet do anything to help my skin? Initially my skin got worst, the worst it had ever been, but this was how my body was reacting. After years of eating something that technically I shouldn’t have been eating, my body was trying to cleanse itself and as a result my skin has to get worse before it got better. But finally my skin started to show signs of improvement and it even started clearly up. But mentally I was down, I found the whole experience depressing and found no enjoyment in eating if I wasn’t doing it at home. After a year I started to slowly bring egg and dairy back into my life and personally it was the right choice.

Nowadays my skin is a million times better, and I eat all the chocolate to my hearts content. I know that people reading this could criticise my decision to return to my own ways but for me it was the right choice. Though I understand reading this that it seems that  I hold a negative view on the whole experience, there was pros alongside the cons.

PROS AND CONS OF BEING EGG AND DAIRY FREE

PROS:

  • I educated myself on food and became accustomed to reading food labels and learning what I was putting into my body.

 

  • I found a love for rice milk (way lighter and tastes nicer then regular milk and I still drink it today) and I became brave with my food choices (hello tofu)

 

CONS:

  • I was egg and dairy free (I wasn’t vegan and I can’t find any term online that defines the type of diet I was on because I still ate meat. If anyone knows, feel free to tell me!) way back in 2010, at a time when veganism was still yet to hit the mainstream. So there was very few if any choices of food suitable to my needs found in restaurants, cafes or supermarkets.

 

  • I hate putting people out of their way, but going to friends houses I was that picky guest who you panicked about before she arrived (WHAT WILL WE FEED HER).

 

To the people who are vegans/ vegetarians etc. I take my hat off to you. Maybe in the future I might try out one of those lifestyles, but at the moment I am happy as I am!

 

I hope this post wasn’t too long but I wanted to go into as much detail as possible, so I could pain the best picture . Obviously I’m not qualified on any of the things I talked about (lol I’m only 19), but if you have any questions on anything I discussed or you just want to share your own experience that would be lovely! Leave a comment down below! 

Learning to Drive

Hey there!

So last week I passed my theory test (can I get a whoop whoop!) and now I’m finally on the road (unintentional pun) to learning how to drive.

A couple of months back I wasn’t really that bothered on learning. Ya ya in this day and age it’s kind of essential/ all my friends are learning/ my parents want me to, but the idea of driving kind of scares me. I’m being trusted to drive a vehicle…like holy crap what if I kill someone?

It’s only after doing my theory test last week that I’ve gotten excited to learn and more importantly to gain more independence. No more persuading mom to drive me somewhere, hey I can do it!

Let me tell you though, if you want to learn to drive you need to be committed. Not for the long lessons behind the wheel, but for how expensive it is! I don’t know about other countries but learning to drive in Ireland isn’t cheap. So far I’ve paid over 100 euro and that’s even before I’ve sat behind the wheel. My theory test cost €45, a required eye test was €15, passport photos €6, and finally the learner permit was €35! For older people who want to gain that independence later on in life and never got a chance to learn before this, it can be very off-putting.

For the past week mom has been taking me for a few driving lessons around our estate. I still have a long way to go though- I need to take twelve official stamped driving lessons before I can sit my driving test. The big goal that I would love to achieve is to be able to drive by the end of this year!

The question I’m going to leave for you guys is: do you have any funny driving related stories? Or if you can’t drive have you ever wanted to learn, if not then… why not! 🙂

Bye for now

Rearranging Stars

x

Exam Advice (from someone who’s been there done that)

Hey there!

So most schools in Ireland did their mocks this month (pre exams that are preparation for the Leaving Cert in June, or A Levels and SATS as they are called in other countries). And now that midterm is over a lot of students will be getting their results backs from their mocks.

As someone who did their Leaving Cert last year I thought I would dedicate this blog to advice/ techniques for exams to anybody who thinks they need it.

  • The mocks don’t always honestly reflect the true results you will get in June. Yes I think the mocks are brilliant to prepare students for the ‘proper’ exam, but if you get an A in biology remember that you mightn’t get the same grade in June. The amount of people who told me ‘the mocks are always harder, everyone goes up a grade in the real thing’,  when really that isn’t always true and it can put you in a false sense of security. So my advice is use the results as feedback but don’t obsess over them, their done, now start preparing for the real thing! 🙂
  • Eat and drink. I know you’ve heard it a million times but lets refresh your memory why don’t we! During exams and studying day in day out it can be easy to neglect eating a healthy diet. You might be too tired or lazy or just rather curl into a ball and eat a tub of ice cream (I know I did) but no this is not the way my child! Eat a balanced diet, your body and mind will thank you for it. Also drink lots of water, it hydrates you and helps your brain with all that studying you’re going to be doing.
  • Have some deep sleep. Try and at least get a 8 hours sleep (I’m going to say 8, you maybe might need to get more but who are we kidding if we get at least that we’re doing great!). Also the earlier you go to bed the better, I know it’s hard when it going midnight and you’re nearly done that essay you have to hand in tomorrow, but maybe you could leave it for the morning, or finish it during a free class? PRIORITIZE! If you find it hard to sleep because your worries and just general stresses of life are keeping you awake (I know I’ve been there), try this little technique I use. Lie flat on your back in bed, close your eyes and concentrate on the darkness around you. Now starting from your toes, tighten your muscles while breathing deeply, move on to your calves, your thighs, your hips and keep moving up till you get to your shoulders. Remember to keep breathing deeply the whole time while focusing on the darkness around you. Do this as slowly as possible and you should drift off in no time! Another technique I found online is the ‘4-7-8’ breathing technique, it’s really interesting and I find that it works, I’ll leave the link to it for you to check out! http://www.byrdie.com/how-to-fall-asleep-fast
  • Get up and move. Finally a bit of exercise never did anyone any harm. It can be hard when you’ve just done 7 hours of school, it’s raining outside and your motivation is gone out the door, but it really will make a difference to how much information you will retain from your study session that night. Now I’m not expecting you to run an hour on a treadmill or chase a ball around a muddy field (but if you’re into that fair play, keep it up!), instead if your like me and the thought of playing sports makes you freeze with fear (I have the coordination of a one-legged penguin) , the easy act of going for a refreshing walk might just be up your alley and is still getting you to move about. Grab your dog while you’re at it, or start a little group with your friends to go for a walk together every day after school!
  • A piece of paper doesn’t define your life. Exams are important, they can help you take a step forward into the career you want to go in. But if you don’t get the results you were looking for, a piece of paper with a fancy stamp on it doesn’t define your life. Take a day to be upset if you have to (I did) but then move on, you WILL find another way to get the job you dream of, maybe there’s a backdoor into the course you want to do, maybe apprenticeship is a possibility? No matter what there is always another way and if you don’t get the results you want don’t let that dishearten you!

That’s basically all the exam tips and tricks that I have to offer. I hope some of them are remotely useful! If you are doing exams this year good luck, you’re nearly there! Something important I feel that could be taken away from this is that you could be the cleverest person and do well in all of your exams, but none of that truly matters at the end of the day if you are not a decent human being.

Are any of ye going through exams at the moment? How are they going? If you’ve ‘been there done that’ like me do you have any advice you would like to share? 🙂

Bye for now!

Rearranging Stars

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