I was watching Big Hero 6 last night (for the umpteenth time…) when I realized just how much GoGo’s catchphrase resonated with me. “Woman up.” If you browse deep enough into my blog to find the first few posts, you’ll know the start of 2016 was not a good one for me. I highly doubt dropping out of law school will be the worst thing that ever happens to me, but it’s taught me a lot about pulling on my big girl shorts and taking on the world.
I’m in a much better place now, but I’ve also been busy as hell. Going back to work after a year and a half of doing nothing but studying was tough to adjust to. My routine used to be going to classes in the afternoon, studying all night until the wee hours of the morning, and sleeping in until noon. But now I get up at five in the morning, go to work, go to the gym, go home and work a little bit more, and then go to sleep. And I suspect things will get harder next year, which is when I’m considering starting my master’s degree. I’ll really need to woman up then.
So how do I go about that?
1. Pull my hair back in a high ponytail or bun.
I love my hair – it’s got quite a bit of volume to it, and since The Big Chop back in 2013, and then again in 2014, it’s grown out some. But sometimes, I feel like all of that just gets in the way, you know? Nothing makes me feel quite like getting down to business
to defeat the Huns than putting my hair up in a high ponytail or a sock bun.
2. Make a cup of coffee.
It’s possible I’m entirely too addicted to caffeine. But hey, whatever gets the job done, right? Not to mention, the process of brewing a pot in and of itself is pretty relaxing. And the smell. Oh glory be, the smell of freshly brewed coffee. Nothing like it to get one all calmed down and happy, is there?
I’m gonna stop now.
3. Drink a glass of water.
There is absolutely nothing in life that can’t be helped by drinking a tall, cold glass of water. Plus I’m sure we all need to be a little more hydrated anyway. Where are all those New Year’s resolutions that say to drink more water this 2016? Get to it!
Want to add a little flavor (literally)? Here are some delicious recipes for fruit-infused water! Citrus and cucumber is my favorite.
4. Clean my room.
I don’t know about you guys, but cleaning my room is just so therapeutic. Perhaps there’s a tinge of procrastination involved there, but you can’t deny that purging your bedroom and seeing it all nice and neat and organized helps you feel like you’re getting your life back on track, am I right? (Also, it can’t hurt in the long run. Only this time, make sure your room stays clean!
5. Take a nap.
Sleeping truly is the “have you tried turning it off and back on?” of the human body. I’ve yet to encounter a situation where I didn’t feel just a smidge better after a nap.
Of course, this method of womaning up comes with its own risks. You could wake up, like, I don’t know, ten years from now. Be warned.
6. Read a book.
Books are my first love. Long before I discovered what a joy it was to shop for shoes, makeup, and airplane seats, there was nothing I liked better than darting into a bookstore and prowling through the shelves for a new friend to take home. Years later, it’s still my best way to unwind from something that’s been bothering me. Anytime I feel tired or stressed, I head over to the nearest bookstore and pick up something new, or if I haven’t got the time, I grab an old favorite from my bookshelves and lose myself in a familiar world.
7. Work out.
Working out. Can’t live with it, can’t live without it. I curse myself every time I go to the gym or a yoga class because holy shit my body was not meant to bend that way, but after I finish my workout, I find my mind is clearer and it’s easier to think. When you’re exerting yourself that hard, you’ve gotta focus on what you’re doing, make sure you’re doing it right so you don’t hurt yourself. There’s no room for overthinking. It’s the perfect way to decompress.
8. Go window-shopping.
Part of it is the exercise, walking around and getting your heart rate up. The rest is just the sheer wanting the pretty things in the window. It’s a great way to get your mind off of things.
I will extol to the moon and back the virtues of writing down your feelings. Everyone from therapists to your local high school guidance counselor has, at one point, suggested writing as a method of managing anger and other strong emotions.
This is partly why, aside from the obvious personal reasons, I’m super uncomfortable sharing my journal with anyone. It’s usually full of all my negative feelings. My boyfriend has this theory that the reason why I’m such a positive person all the time is because all the bad stuff I feel, I put it away in my journal.
Sometimes, you just gotta sit down and work through what you’re thinking and feeling without trying to distract yourself. This is where meditation comes in. I learned to meditate as part of my yoga discipline, and it really helps, let me tell you. When there’s nothing but you, your mind and soul, and whatever problem you’re facing, you get this sudden clarity and inner peace that really forces you to evaluate your situation.