Tag Archives: stress

You Know It’s Time To Slow Down When…

It was the beginning of September of last year. I was finishing up a summer full of work and classes, plus several training sessions for the internship I’d be doing for the upcoming academic year. I was scheduled to take the LSAT, and I really needed to get started on my applications. In addition, the fall quarter would start soon, and I was scheduled to take 16 units, including 12 honors units. Something wasn’t right. 

The problem wasn’t that I spread myself too thinly. The problem was that I approached the situation at hand poorly. My doctor kept trying to get me to do yoga, and to “talk to myself” about the problem. She also really wanted me to seek help. And I tried to, but it is incredibly difficult to schedule an appointment with the counseling services at UCLA. I suppose we’re all too stressed. 

My health deteriorated quickly. I would snap at my wife constantly for not being able to get a good score on Reading Comprehension. I became this person I hope I’ll never see again. Though my bad and bitter mood wasn’t my main concern. I fell sick. The type of sick where you need to see your doctor every day, and you are weak all the time. This made things worse. 

I stopped working. My wife stepped up and began to work for the both of us; in addition to taking me to the doctor and making sure I was taking my pills on time. I missed a lot of days in my internship. I couldn’t take the October LSAT, and almost missed the December. Actually, I probably shouldn’t have taken it then, but I couldn’t postpone it any longer. I struggled with my classes because I didn’t do well with the narcotics. I didn’t want to, but I was forced to slow down. No more yelling, no more stressing. I couldn’t even walk at the same speed I do when healthy. 

I am ashamed that it had to get this bad for me to get it. But I did. I have felt overwhelmed since then, but I strongly believe I’m a lot better now. One of my professors said it better: “problems are problems because we make them be that.” You may disagree, but in my eyes, he’s a genius. I could have been excited to take the LSAT and show off my abilities, or that I would be challenged with honor courses- instead, I chose the low road and made things worse in the end. 

I know it may sound obvious to say that how you approach things makes a difference, but is it? You’re in control of your thoughts, ideas, and attitudes. You may not be able to control if someone crashes into your car, but you’re definitely capable of controlling how you’ll react after. Will you be stress and crying or will you stop and realize that this is just another part of life (accidents happen…)? It’s up to you.

Mrs. This One

Along the Lines of Revising

Hi everyone. I’m currently blogging from one of the UCLA labs and I gotta say it feels a bit weird (and a bit chilly) to say the least. Now that I’ve managed to mess up my remote access, I got no choice than to do the work I’d like to do home at school. I just finished the project I lost last week (see: “And We’re Back”) and about to start on this big research project worth about a third of my grade- fun, huh? In any case I figured a break would do me great.

I went to see my psychologist today and the best thing I got out of it is something I already knew (but stubbornly ignored as much as possible) that I create my own stress. Sure one thing is to say that and another is to write a paper when your rent is due the next day and you only have the money. In that case it is almost impossible to avoid the stress. But the doc has a point- I am the only one who can produce that stress… regardless of the situation, without me, there would be no stress.

She asked me a very important question, “if you think next quarter will be busier than this one, what would you do then?” I really couldn’t come up with an answer. I just knew that I need to look at my life a bit differently. I want good grades (who doesn’t?!) but I also have to be realistic that because of work, I simply may not have enough time to get everything done. We could say that this may hurt me when I apply to grad school, but I’m human- this is the life I have and I just need to work with what I have (I feel like I have said this before).

So today I have revised that part of me. I am starting to stop myself when I begin to worry sick about stuff that is not in my control. I need practice but I’m hoping that eventually it will come naturally.

-Mrs. This One

Time to Revise

Three more class sessions and then we’ll have finals- damn, this is going by way too fast!

It seems my next quarter will be quite more complicated than this one. How did I get myself into this situation? I’m not quite sure. I should start buying the lottery… and maybe if I win (knocking on wood), I can take some time off work. And if I don’t win, I would just be a few dollars off a week and the wife might have a word with me about my new unhealthy habit- whoa, I just went down a very dangerous road.

Let’s backtrack a bit.

A fellow blogger of mine blogged recently about the “what ifs of life.” And my comment to her post made me think about what I’d say to myself. “Enjoy life as much as you can” came to mind. I’ve been so stressed, sick, and worried lately… I have an appointment with a psychologist tomorrow… I should be doing my homework instead of blogging… I’ve been feeling like I’m not in control of my life anymore. Sure I have my fun, and sure I do think I’m happy… but not as much or often as I’d like to.

I’m letting school and work be a bigger part of my life than I’d like them to be. Yes, I love to learn and make money, but those two things are not as important as the things that go on here under my cozy roof. But lately, it seems like all I talk about is school or work- I’m even writing about it now! So maybe it’s time to revise.

Time to enjoy life again.

-Mrs. This One

Paying Our Dues

I’ve feel like I’ve been needing to take a deep breath for a while. At the end of last quarter, I thought that school couldn’t get any more stressful than it was last quarter, and I was truly looking forward to this quarter because of the classes I decided to take (History of Rome from Caesar to Constantine; Seminar on the Russian Revolution with my thesis advisor, Prof. G; Intro to Sociological Theory with my wife). Boy, I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Let me clarify, it’s not that I’m not enjoying my classes. I am loving them. I know my wife is loving her classes, too (for the most part…). I just had no idea that this much stress was possible! Both my wife and I are working 24 hours per week (her: MWF; me: MWThF) and are taking more than full time units (her: 15!; me: 13). This leaves very little time for things like sleep, cleaning, or cooking, which, ultimately puts more stress back on us (no time to cook leads to paying for meals leads to more time devoted to working to earn money leads to less time used on homework leads to less time being able to sleep leads to sleeping when we should be doing things like cooking or cleaning… repeat).

Long story short, I’m looking forward to a bit of R&R over spring break. We are visiting my wife’s family in the South, and I have never been anywhere that I consider “southern” (I went to Orlando to Disney World a couple times… not really the “south”). I’m very excited to start in Atlanta and work our way inland to Alabama. I think it’ll be a good trip, but I’m not sure how much relaxing I’ll be able to do since I’m quite nervous about meeting my wife’s family.

I have higher (farther) places I’d like to go as well. Today, as always, I got a deal in my inbox for TravelZoo. I decided to poke around the site a bit because I had a few minutes to kill. I was bombarded by deals across the Atlantic for $499 4 nights in Dublin (air and hotel included) and Paris for $1099 for a week (air and hotel included), and I couldn’t help but daydream about the future when we’ll be able to travel more…. But for now, we will continue to pay our dues as starving, working, married students trying to support ourselves and each other without going crazy. Wish us luck for our last month of class this quarter (we need it!).

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