March 20, 2013

10 Things I Learned After College

Gone are the days of sleeping in makeup, pulling all nighters, saying "I can catch up on sleep on the weekend!" Now that I'm in grad school, I notice I have different habits then I did in college. Some of these are embarrassing while some are more important lessons I'll be carrying on in my adulthood. The learning doesn't stop after college folks!

1. Sit at the front of the class. I used to think those that sat in the front were teacher's pets. They annoyed me. But now in grad school, I sit in the front because it forces me to pay attention better. I understand the value of it now.

2. Get up 20 minutes before your alarm. It is so tempting to sleep in a few minutes and hit the snooze button. But if you allow yourself a few minutes to wake up then your body is ready to face the day. Don't believe me? Try it. It makes a huge difference. Rather than chugging coffee to wake yourself up, just give yourself that extra time in the morning. Same goes for night.

3. Unplug an hour before bed. I loved that I've learned this lesson especially since I'm such a social media addict. Everyone should do this for some piece of mind... seriously. Turn off the TV, don't sit in front of the computer, avoid looking at your phone. Avoid screens in general but rather read a book or listen to music at least a half hour before going to bed. I get mocked by my friends for this but seriously you need to turn your brain off from all the stimulation from screens. It will lead to a more restful night and there is nothing better than starting your day after a good night sleep.

4. Don't oversleep on the weekends. I have a lot of lessons about sleep (lol!) but it is so important to keeping your mind sharp and your energy levels up. Sleeping in on the weekends is very tempting and I used to do it all the time in college but then it's hard for your body to re-adjust during the week to your regular hours. Be nice to your body and keep it on a regular schedule.

5. You have to work at friendships. Definitely in a busy city like New York where everyone is running around. I've always been the planner of my friends so I always have to follow up about hanging out, which can be exhausting because I'm like why do I always have to make the plans?! but it's just the role I play in the friendship and I've come to accept it. Always working on being a better friend though.

6. How to blend. Yes, sadly. I honestly didn't develop a makeup routine until I started blogging. I would usually wear cakey makeup from MAC because I was breaking out and wanted to cover my acne. Little did I know that MAC makeup makes you break out. Now that I'm nearly 30, I've finally figured out the makeup I should be wearing and how to apply it. We all learn at our own pace (lol).

7. The importance of a beauty routine. Especially as you age, this is so important. In my family, we all mock my aunt who would dedicate an hour every night to her beauty routine. I now feel her pain. I dedicate about 20 minutes or so to my nightly routine (which feels like a lifetime). I used to be one of those girls who barely took her makeup off at night but I know realize how toxic that is to your skin. Now I preach the word to my sister, cousin, friends and anyone else I find out doesn't take their makeup off! There's no excuse especially when there are so may products on the market that take makeup off while cleansing your face like DHC's Cleansing Oil. Other important lessons within your beauty routine:
- Your skin requires different products in the summer vs winter.
- SPF in your makeup is not enough.
- Wash your pillow frequently.
- Wash your makeup brushes weekly.

8. Your clothes should have meaning. When we're broke in college, the temptation is fast-fashion. You're also playing around with your style so you can't even imagine investing in certain items. However, if you calculated the costs of all the H&M items you purchased and threw out within 6 months, I am sure that it would total the cost of a great handbag or coat that would last you years. You don't necessarily need to own more fashion to love fashion. I honestly had a full closet and would always feel like I had nothing to wear. That's a sign you don't have a well edited closet. I'll pass on the advice my friend Alex and I discussed: If you can purchase an investment piece in your early 20s (whether as a gift or a sample sale) purchase a size up because rarely will your body stays the same size (gasp! but it's true ladies...). If Alex and I had bought some fabulous pieces in a size up, we'd still be enjoying them. Except now I'm selling them on Threadflip.

9. Making time for yourself. Especially in grad school, the work load can be overwhelming. I mentioned how I live alone and how that's so important to me. But also after graduation, I learned that you have to be okay with being alone sometimes. As a single gal who lives alone, I find myself alone a lot but I don't feel alone. If that makes any sense. I'm happy to hang out with myself, read a book or take myself to a movie. On the weekends, I like to do a little at-home pampering to get myself ready for the week. As RuPaul says "'If you don't love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else. Can I get a gay men?!"

10. Get out of your comfort zone. Do something that scares you. Often times we just want to keep our heads down, not cause any disruption with work or school but we bring that into our daily lives and it becomes mundane. You only get one life so you should take chances! For me, public speaking is terrifying and now every week in my marketing classes we have to give a presentation. It was painful at first but now I'm slowly getting more comfortable with it.

Oh and one silly one... how to reheat rice. Hint: a wet paper towel! After all that Chinese takeout, I honestly had no idea how to reheat it without making the rice hard. So happy I googled that one!

What lessons have you learned since graduating college?

14 comments:

  1. Is it bad that the tip I was most excited about from this post (don't get me wrong - they were all good tips) was how to reheat rice? Haha. It really is always hard whenever I reheat it - now I know how to fix that!

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    1. lol no it's not bad. Glad I help you learn something :)

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  2. I never knew how to apply makeup until I was out of college. What I did wasn't BAD, but it wasn't very daring. My mother had taught me that there was ONE TRUE WAY to put on makeup, and you only ever wore certain colors. I found one lipstick that she said looked good on me, and that was my lipstick for the next fifteen years.

    Now? I've learned there's only a few colors I should avoid, and even with those, it's just certain shades.

    I've also learned to buy quality make-up. My mother only ever bought drug store brands, so, once again, I followed suit. When I was going to get married, I treated myself to a good kit, and I was amazed. My face felt so much nicer! The products felt good!

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    1. Ahh I see. I was doing crazy stuff! lol My mom and sister didn't wear a lot of makeup so I'd have friends show me like a palette (this is for the brow bone, the lid, etc) but I would blend anything... just smear it across my eye. So bad! Needed my beauty bloggers to show me the way :) But yes like fashion, with makeup you should use the drugstore brands to play with colors to see what works on you but once you find something good... invest in a quality brand.

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  3. ha love this, such great advice! the transition out of college is sooo hard! i agree totally with the buying better clothing items, you have more money spend it to look professional and for the items to last! and seriously i never heard that tip about rice...genius!

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    1. LOL so simple! Yes, I Just saw myself cleaning out so many H&M clothes at the end of the season because they lost their shape or pilled. So wasteful :(

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  4. Great tips! I still don't have a make-up routine (I just can't) but I definitely agree with not oversleeping on the weekends. And I've always read myself to sleep instead of watching TV.

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    1. Very nice! lol why can't you get a makeup routine?!

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  5. Im definitelt that friend that clowns you for going to sleep so early but I'm always the one who's tired so....I guess you're winning lol. Great tips! All of these I'm just now realizing. :)

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    1. Lol you're not the only one. Glad you're learning these lessons :)

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  6. These are all really good lessons! I need to work hard on #8- I dislike so many things in my closet and I need to do a huge closet cleanout soon, maybe even this weekend.

    star-crossed smile

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  7. #3 - my BF and I actually lost the remote to our TV in the bedroom so for the last few weeks we've just read or done some quiet activity before we go to sleep. Def makes a world of difference! We don't get caught up in some pointless bad TV and sleep through the night better too!

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    1. lol a fun way to stay away from the TV. It definitely makes a difference! I challenge anyone to do it for a week.

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