Things I Wish I Could Go Back and Tell Freshman Year Me

The best four years of my life are coming to a close this Friday. I’m graduating from the University of Georgia with a B.S. in Psychology, with an emphasis in neuroscience, and a minor in Art History. I’ll be heading off to Macon, Georgia in July to start law school at Mercer with a full ride. I should feel ecstatic about this next chapter of my life, but now that I’m here all I want to do is rewind.

My parents always told me that I would enjoy college. They told me I would find my people, people just like me that were cool with being uncool and didn’t mind if all I wanted to talk about was the news or science facts or cats. I didn’t believe them. Middle school and high school had been so awful that I didn’t believe that any form of school could be okay, much less actually enjoyed. I wish I had listened to them. I went into my freshman year cautious, guarded, and terribly shy. I wanted to make new friends because I was lonely, but I was so scared being bullied or hated that I really struggled with actually connecting with people. Four years later and I could become BFF’s with just about anyone. I re-learned that the world is full of good intentions, but not always good people, and that’s okay. Being kind and open will get you much further than being cautious.

I’ve never been good at math and science, or at least not as good at that as I am at writing. My parents always encouraged me to follow my passion, but I was dead set on having a career that would allow me to make enough money to support a family. I chose science as a freshman because I saw the potential for a safety net – I could go to school and do just okay and still end up making enough money to be considered successful. Three semesters into my science courses and I was calling my dad, in tears, on a monthly basis because I hated my classes so much. The one thing I learned from this? Do something you’re good at for a career, and save the stuff that makes you happy for your weekends. Science fills me with wonder and excitement, but taking science classes made me want to pull my hair out. I just flat out wasn’t good at them, so I didn’t enjoy them. It made science feel like a chore rather than an ambition. You might disagree with me here, but my advice is to never let the thing that brings you joy become your day job, because then it feels like a chore.

Walking into college, I decided that I wasn’t here to have fun, I was here to make a career for myself. I was so driven. I wanted to work in a lab and have internships with the CDC and go places. Only in my junior year did I actually stop myself and say “hold up, I have the rest of my life to work, but if I go out with friends or wake up early to watch the sunrise instead of applying for a second job I’m going to have so much more fun”. Junior year I changed my mindset, added a minor that made me happy, stopped freaking out about adulthood, got an internship in something that wasn’t science, decided on going to law school instead of getting my Ph. D. (still might happen one day, though), and started living. Wow. Not only did my quality of life improve, my grades did too.

Now that my undergrad life is coming to a close I’m beginning to realize how much I have truly loved this chapter in my life. I’m glad I embraced it, even though it took a few semesters. As I head off into law school I am reminded of how lucky I am that I have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.

Go Dawgs!

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On My Radar

This week’s and next week’s blog posts will be on the shorter side because it’s exam season. Best of luck to everyone studying their butts off (and thanks to those procrastinating by reading my blog).

For anyone else still on a Thanksgiving food kick, here’s a great GrubHub post on a chef’s Thanksgiving week. All of her “spontaneous” dishes sound like they’re to die for

Pediatricians swallow Lego heads to prove a point.

See how the New York Time’s Best Books of 2018 compares to Goodread’s Best of 2018 

Here’s my top pic from both of the above articles! 

The great red cup debate. Great for instilling political controversy and for keeping those holiday brew lattes nice and warm. 

This looks like something I need to do to finish the debut novel I’ve been working on since high school.

For your listening pleasure this week.

Florida Georgia

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This was my first time going to The World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party, otherwise known as the Georgia vs. Florida game in Jacksonville. While I didn’t have a single cocktail there (my liver is probably grateful for that haha) I did indulge in way too many sweets and treats. Sometimes you really need some stadium junk food to get you in the mood! Plus the bag checkers let me bring in my Cheerios because, let’s face it, I am truly a soccer mom at heart.

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After a Dawgs win, the weekend couldn’t have ended on a better note!

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My Everyday Life

Life has been super crazy, as it always is during October. Between midterms, Homecoming, birthdays, weddings, and so much else I feel like I haven’t taken a deep breath in about three weeks!

Without further ado, let’s jump right into some real time footage of my everyday life this fall.

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Homecoming came and went in the blink of an eye. This was my last year on the executive board and being able to plan all of the events will definitely be something I will miss about being an undergrad.

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Will celebrated his birthday in Atlanta this year. Both of our families were able to get together for brunch and we had so much fun!

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Fall is here and I’ve broken out my favorite leopard print loafers to celebrate.

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Celebrating with friends after midterms couldn’t be more fun. So thankful for all of the people UGA has brought into my life!

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Recently

I’ve had a lot of things going on in my life since 2018 started, and it feels good to stay so busy!

I went to the Rose Bowl!

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And then I went to Disneyland…

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Google Art has a super cool app out that lets you see which paintings you look most like. I’m not sure if I agree with this one

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Valentine’s Day was spent with close friends and Will, and it was so good. Will got me a Valentine’s azalea! How pretty is it?!

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Will and I went to Canada for President’s Day weekend.

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I’ve had a blast meeting all the graduate students touring UGA looking to work in Student Affairs – we’re looking for a new Homecoming GA!

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We’ve also been doing “socials” to get to know one another better. Here’s a pic from a recent trip to the Museum of High Art in Athens.

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I got accepted into Psi Chi, the International Psychology Honors Society. I love getting to do community service projects with my new friends!

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I’ve started re-watching Pretty Little Liars. It’s been a good mental break for the middle of the day.

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Here are links to all the recipes I’ve tried recently:

Zucchini fritters

Sheet pan recipes

Make at home egg McMuffin (except I make mine without any meat)

Garlic kale quiche

If you want to keep up with what I’m reading you can always follow my Goodreads account by clicking here.

What have you all been up to this year?

xo Bailey

 

 

Being a Leader in 2018

My Homecoming Committee and I attended the 2018 Collegiate Leadership Conference this past weekend. I learned more than I could have imagined I needed to know, but  I really want to share some notes from our keynote speakers Dr. Jan and VP Wilson.

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This was taken from the UGA Homecoming Instagram. Give us a follow @ugahomecoming !

The first keynote speaker was Dr. Jan. She spoke about what leaders are, and how we perceive them. For me, the big take away item was that a leader is anyone who inspires others and brings people together. Here’s a Youtube video recap of the story she talked about that I thought was most inspiring: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IQlxLBqgFKc

Dr. Jan is an incredible speaker, as well as a mom, so she always has great advice. She reached out to me after what I thought was a failure during last year’s Homecoming and taught me how to grow from my slip-up. While she didn’t coin this phrase, she teaches to lead with “lollipop moments”. Here’s an awesome Ted Talk on that: https://www.ted.com/talks/drew_dudley_everyday_leadership – Lollipop Moments

Leading with intentionality was another big take away from CLC. Jake Carnes (UGA alum, Arch Society alum, and former Homecoming King) gave a TedEx talk called How We Can Cultivate Intentional Compliments. Check it out:

VP Wilson was the final keynote speaker of the day. I hear a lot from him because of his close relationship to the Arch Society. I know it’s going to be good when he gets up on stage. He somehow says exactly what I need to hear every single time. In Saturday’s speech he gave us 10 tips for being a better leader:

  1. Find ways to be happy
  2. Ask for help
  3. Start with a yes
  4. Listen more than you speak
  5. Pay attention to the world around you
  6. Work (“grow up and shut up”, if you signed up for a job follow it through)
  7. Integrity should be 24/7
  8. Plan ahead (What type of leader do I want to be in 10 years?)
  9. Work for the common good
  10. Let it be YOU – What can YOU do about solving a problem? (Don’t think that someone else will get to it, often times they won’t, so take charge)

A good question to ask yourself, VP said, is “What problem can I tackle in my immediate world?” Too often do we point out problems and expect that someone else will get around to them. Leaders take charge, no matter how small an issue seems.

A great speech that talks about tip number eight is Matthew McConaughey’s winning speech for Best Actor. Give it a watch here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wD2cVhC-63I

What tips do you have when it comes to being a leader?