What it means to be in a rut

I always thought the concept of being in a rut meant you never really do anything outside of work and such, and it’s not a million miles off. I truly believed I had stepped out of my rut by going to yoga on Mondays and walking as much as I can. But unfortunately I think I’m still stuck. I looked up a definition and found the following:

a settled and monotonous routine that is hard to escape

 

Yoga has become a part of my routine and yet I find myself dreading it each Monday. I attribute this to a number of possibilities:

  1. My social anxiety (after all, I feel the same sense of dread when going out with friends)
  2. Being an introvert (being in a work all day, my need to be alone and decompress becomes greater in the evenings
  3. Laziness! (I’ll be honest, I hate going home from work and then going back out again, I’d rather just go straight)

But could this be part of the rut I thought I’d escaped? I still can’t motivate myself to do certain tasks (updating my blog being one of them). How much harder do I need to push to escape once and for all?

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Mindfulness and Creativity: Excuses

I’m ashamed to admit that I’m still procrastinating with my courses. I guess I feel I have valid reasons, but deep down I know better. It’s always the same, if this wasn’t happening or if I was in such and such a position, blah, blah, blah!

My main fault is being unable to get up early to do my meditation and writing exercises, as I already get up very early because it takes me over an hour to get to work every day. Right now my alarm is set for 6.15am, giving me plenty of time to do my writing exercise, which I’ll explain more about soon, and do my meditation, before my usual morning routine kicks in.

I keep saying once I finish my college course, then I won’t have to get into work so early in order to make up the time I miss for classes. Or if I could just go to bed early, but…Reddit! Or if I worked closer to home.

Two out of three of those excuses are impossible to change right now: I still have another three months of college. And I can’t change jobs right now otherwise I’d have to pay the €2,000 college fees (my job are paying for my education). So I can’t actually afford to change jobs, which just sounds kind of ironic.

What I can change is going to bed earlier at night. When I say Reddit, I mean I am addicted to it. Every night I go to bed and browse AskReddit or other subreddits (depending) until I’m too drowsy to keep it up. Blame my fiancé, he got me into it!

I can make all the excuses I want, but they don’t stop me beating myself up. I know what I have to do, it’s just fighting against the procrastination that’s proving to be the real challenge.

Must. Not. Procrastinate!

Sex and the City, Looking Back After Ten Years

It has been 10 years since the lovely ladies of Sex and the City bowed out of our small screens and became cemented in constant reruns. For 6 years, we followed Carrie Bradshaw, Charlotte York, Miranda Hobbs and Samantha Jones as they fell in love, had their hearts broken, married, divorced and dated practically every guy in Manhattan they conveniently never saw again once they were disposed of!

Based on the book by Candace Bushnell, SATC opened up the world of dating in modern day New York City through the eyes of four single and completely different thirty-something women. Each episode brought with it new men, new daring outfits and new memorable moments that left lasting impressions on its viewers.

When asked what you’d consider to be a classic moment, the first thing that comes to everyone’s mind is “funky spunk”, need I say more? Carrie’s steamy affair with Mr Big provided the thrills, Samantha’s battle with breast cancer provided the tears, Charlotte’s quest for true love provided the giggles, and Miranda’s…well, Miranda provided a bit of each!

If you’re not a New Yorker, it may seem almost unbelievable that some of the plotlines featured in this show could actually happen in real life, but don’t be so sure! Remember Miranda’s humorous confession after learning that Carrie had been dumped by a post-it note? “I was once broken up with by a guy’s doorman!” It turns out that it was art imitating life, as this actually happened to one of the writers!

It has also provided lessons in love for the novice dater with the infamous line that led to a book and a movie: ‘he’s just not that into you’. And if you make that memorable trek into Manhattan, you will discover the Sex and the City tour which visits some of the show’s hot spots, and in turn, has boosted business for some of the spots.

The show didn’t go without its controversy. The Society of Uncircumcised Men, a group no one heard of until season 2 of the show, raised concern when an episode featured Charlotte referring to her boyfriend’s uncircumcised penis as a sharpie. Sorry, boys!

Unlike Friends, the guest stars were modest and didn’t drown every second episode, the Los Angeles double bill excluded. Well known TV stars popped up such as Sarah Michelle Gellar and David Duchovny (ironic?) with some big names like Heather Graham, Matthew McConaughey and, um…Geri Halliwell.

From lazy ovaries to depressed vaginas, SATC had no limits to what it featured. It is no wonder fans were heartbroken when the series came to an end in 2004. However, it turned out not to be the end when a feature-length movie was released five years later in 2009, followed by a sequel. Still not satisfied? The rumour mill is turning with hints of a third instalment, so fingers crossed!

http://www.edition.ie/culture/sex-and-the-city-looking-back-after-ten-years-6059

Masters has begun

I am officially a Journalism Masters student, and already I sort of feel like an amateur. People around me are writing these amazing articles with excellent writing, and all I’ve written is a lousy survival guide for undergraduate students. I really want to write an article on introversion in third level (you can see I love that topic) but I just don’t know where to start. I’m pretty sure the pressure I’m putting on myself to write it isn’t helping.

Article writing has never been my strong point. I’m hoping this course will change that, but I also wish that everyone was just as amateurish about it as I am. Instead I’m surrounded by people who have gotten articles published in well-known publications. Write articles for fun (fun!) and therefore have a load to submit to our college newspaper.

It’s not my intention to self-pity myself on this. This is the only place online where I can let this all out without my classmates knowing what’s on my mind.

The end.

Why Introverts Shouldn’t Work in Retail

I begin my MA in Journalism in a little less than a month, and I’m well aware I’ve made no real attempts to write an article. I always have ideas, but I rarely put them down on paper. So here is a first draft of one I have been working on, which I know needs a lot of tweaking, and it doesn’t even look like it’s finished either. But if I don’t post it, I’ll never finish it. Opinions are welcome! I heard a quote that went something like, ‘when you finish your first draft, forgive yourself’. I can’t remember who said it.

All job listings have certain requirements for the positions they’re offering: good computer skills, excellent phone manner, fluent English, etc. Retail job offers in particular look for someone who is a people person, outgoing, a team player – basically someone who thrives in social interactions. It is pretty obvious that if you consider yourself having none of those characteristics, then you should probably avoid applying for retail jobs. Money is money, however, and in times like these beggars can’t be choosers. We must take what we can get.

I consider myself introverted, but that isn’t to say that I prefer being alone for a majority of my day. I do enjoy social situations, but with people I know very well such as family and friends. I have a tight-knit group of friends and that suits me perfectly. I don’t want to be one of those people who has thousands of friends on Facebook and has plans for the entire week. I like to have time to myself, to recharge. What happens to your phone if it isn’t recharged? It stops working. That’s not to say that I stop working if I don’t get time alone, but I become uneasy.

Retail is a pretty easy area to find work in, providing you have some experience. I applied for my current job as a sales assistant so I could save up for college, which, after two years, has finally come to fruition. While it is easy to get into, it is not easy to stay there. If you work in retail yourself, you know what you have to put up with. There are dozens, if not hundreds of websites dedicated to rants of the retail worker. As a frequent reader and contributor to some of these websites, I have nothing but respect to those who can keep up a good manner even in the face of such horrible and unnecessary abuse from customers. No, I don’t freak out at customers, the best I can do is change my tone to sound a little irritated, but mostly I hate confrontation full stop and I will do anything to avoid it.

Managers and team leaders expect you to interact with your customers, to chat to them, or at least greet them to make them feel like they’re not just another face in the queue. As a social pariah, this is not easy for me. Sure, there are occasions when I am in such a good mood that I’ll talk to anyone, but most of the time I just want to scan the customer’s items through, take their payment and send them on their way. Next!

It’s easy to talk to customers whom you can relate to. For example, when I see a customer buying cat food, I am instantly interested to hear about their feline friend(s), as I have a cat myself. It’s the same with dogs and other animals. I am a great animal lover. Most of the time it is me who has to begin the conversation, but sometimes you get an extremely chatty person who will talk to anyone and I find it difficult to keep them going with my ‘oh right’ and ‘I see that’ responses. I’m not interested in the economy, or how we should get rid of the smaller coins in the Euro. Yes, I do think it’s a disgrace that we don’t have paper bags for the clothes or the wine, but I can’t do anything about it. Even if I agree with them, they stand there expecting me to come up with a solution, which I’m convinced involves me magically pulling said out of stock item out of nowhere.

Guest Speaker

A friend of mine has been asked to teach a five-week course at Dublin City University (DCU) to secondary school students who are interested in studying psychology and/or technology. We both studied Psychology Applied to IT so he’s asked me to be a guest speaker. I agreed mostly on the grounds of not wanting to add to my list of regrets. “I should’ve done this, I should’ve done that…”

What will I talk about? It’s been a three years since I graduated and yet I’m supposed to talk about my time doing the course and my research project. It’s something I’ll certainly have to brush up on!

I’m meeting said friend today for lunch to discuss it further. I know I’ll be a nervous wreck, and considering I suffer with anxiety, I just hope I can make it through without running for the hills!

It’s Been A While…

I talk about my first week of my writing course and then I shut off. Apologies for that. In fact, I completed the six-week course just this Wednesday last. I’m glad I did it, in spite of putting my stories out there and allowing myself to be criticised by people who wouldn’t volunteer their own work. I don’t wish to sound bitter, but it annoyed me a little bit.

More detail on my course coming soon, but I should announce that I have been accepted to study my MA in Digital Journalism (formerly Journalism). Very happy!