How to motivate yourself during the academic year

Hi lovelies,

How are you all keeping?

It honestly feels like I haven’t checked in with all of you, in months!

I’m currently just trying to survive the final four months of my degree, therefore, I have very limited time for writing. However, today I wanted to share three simple ways to motivate yourself during the academic year.

  1. Talk to your friends

Friendships are an integral part of the college experience.

The friends you make in college play a major role in most, if not all, of the college memories you’ll cherish for life.

Although they are great to party with, never forget how relatable they are.

You are all in this academic journey together, therefore, they know more than anyone else, how demotivating, the whole learning process may sometimes be.

College is like a never ending rollercoaster.

There are many highs, but with them, comes just as much lows.

Assignment deadlines are nothing but demotivating – once you finish a task, there’s always another one lingering around the corner. The cycle just never seems to end!

This cycle, often leaves students feeling drained, physically and emotionally, and, as a consequence, doubtful thoughts begin to blossom.

College friends are crucial in times where you may feel this way.

By talking to one another you will soon feel reassured, not alone, hopeful and comforted.

2. Focus on the bigger picture

College is full of endless hurdles, that can sometimes leave you questioning, if you are wasting your time or not. In the process of attaining your degree, you often lose focus of your goals, and although this is very natural, do not allow yourself to lose all hope.

Instead, focus on the bigger picture.

Remind yourself of why you applied to college.

Remind yourself, of the many achievements you wish to accomplish, and never stop striving for what you want! – no matter how hard it may seem at times.

College is a stepping stone to all your future career goals. So give it your best shot!

3. Celebrate little achievements

As mentioned above, college assignments and deadlines are seemingly never-ending.

Therefore, make sure to celebrate yourself, once you’ve completed one.

You deserve to celebrate all the hard work, tears, energy and dedication that you’ve spent whilst completing each task.

By celebrating your achievements, you give yourself, the necessary shot of motivation needed to get to the end.

Staying motivated in college, is imperative to your success.

If you’re anything like me, and sometimes have trouble motivating yourself, try applying these tips to help you stay driven, as you approach graduation.

This college year is almost over, and summer 2020 will soon be in reach, so get yourself motivated, and FAST!

“You don’t want to look back and know you could’ve done better”.

Love, Nyasha x

Why prioritizing yourself, is the best decision you’ll ever make

Hi lovelies,

How are you all keeping?

Before I dive into today’s blog post, I just want to apologize for the lack of content on this blog lately. The reality is that, college has finally decided to take its preeminence in my life again. Deadlines are beginning to pile up on me, and as a result, for the time being, I have no other choice but to prioritize my education, meaning content on the blog will now be limited to when I can, instead of on a weekly basis.

I am not saying goodbye, but I am just giving each of you a heads up, not to be expecting a weekly blog post as I was previously accustomed to. Instead I will try pop on as often as I can, with as much advice, updates and positive energy, as possible!

For the time being, I just want to say thank you for the continuous support that each of you have given me since starting – I honestly feel like I can never say it enough.

For all the shares, comments, words of encouragement and for simply taking the time to read what I put out. Thank you!

Anyways… enough of the soppy stuff. Let’s get into the topic, of today’s blog post;

Why prioritizing yourself, is the best decision you’ll ever make.

Growing up, I was always that child who would drop everything and anything to be there for the people around me.

I have a very giving personality and I never really knew my limit. I would bend backwards for people who would rarely do the same for me.

As I went through my teenage years, I quickly identified this trait and how detrimental it was becoming for me. I was beginning to feel exhausted, frustrated and even angry when I would not receive the same energy I would consistently give out.

I would question my self worth, identity, friendships and life itself. All because I had convinced myself that I loved being a giver. That I am someone everyone should be able to count on, when they are in need.

From a young age we are all taught that giving is the best way to show kindness.

We are all guilty at chorusing the idea that ‘sharing is caring’ – but never explaining to what extent. No wonder why it becomes so easy for some of us to get caught up in unhealthy cycles that may begin to take a toil on our health.

When your constantly the one who gives and gives, you risk burning yourself out. Your well, begins to run dry, and as a result you begin to form resentful feelings.

If you relate to ever feeling any of the above emotions because of your tendency to give a little more than is necessary, I want to encourage you to find a balance.

Begin to identify when your giving out of love or when you’re giving out of guilt and negativity.

Unfortunately I can’t tell you exactly how to find this balance for yourself, but what I can share, is how doing so, for myself, has benefited me.

1. I began to value myself

As I mentioned above, over giving caused me to develop negative emotions. It took a significant toil on my self-esteem and made me question my self worth and value. I almost began to feel like it was normal for people to walk all over me. However, once I identified the negative emotions, that stemmed from giving too much. I quickly began to put value on myself.

Now I have learnt to quickly take two steps back, when I feel under appreciated or taken for granted.

I’m not saying that I expect to be thanked or praised when I go out of my way for someone, but if I’m constantly questioning the other individuals intentions, my time will quickly become limited.

2. My giving became much more genuine

If you were to ask me what my favorite characteristic, that I possess is, I would undoubtedly say that it is my giving spirit.

However at one point in time, I found myself giving for all the wrong reasons. I remember feeling guilty and under pressure, to do it all! To give, because it made me look good, or because I felt morally obliged to.

To overcome this, I had to learn to prioritize my own needs, and as a result, I started giving from a cheerful place, once again!

I took care of my own needs, which in turn gave me the energy necessary, to take care of, and put energy that was light, joyful and void of pressure, into others.

3. I began to focus on my own goals

When your a naturally giving person, it is very easy to focus entirely on other individuals, besides yourself.

You begin to focus all your time and energy into them, leaving little to no time for you. You slowly become sidetracked by their life, and slowly begin to divert all attention, away from your own ambitions and plans.

By balancing how much of me, I was giving to people, I began to regain my own zeal for life. I no longer craved that thrill, I got from helping people. I stopped allowing, giving to be the only drive I had in life. I realized I had more to offer!

Prioritizing myself, was and is one of the best decisions I have ever made, because it caused me to develop as an individual. I became an even happier person, because I grew to be content in myself, as opposed to being content in the way others saw me. I started to become (well at least tried…), as invested in myself as I was in others.

To whoever this has resonated with – I beg you to find your balance. Stop feeling guilty. Let go of the pressures of society.

Protect your energy, by prioritizing yourself.

Yes it’s all well and good, to be there for everyone and anyone, but if you can’t even be there for yourself, what good are you?

Reminder; You are allowed to help yourself before you help others.

Love, Nyasha x

The Pressure of Young Success

Hi lovelies,

It’s been less than a week, but it honestly feels like forever since I sat down at my laptop with the intent to blog. I actually miss having all the time in the world for blogging – but now I’m back to routines, time tables and managing college assignments, what a dream!

Whilst getting ready for work, last Sunday I decided to incorporate something new into my morning routine; listening to a podcast! Considering I had a lot of catching up to do, I decided to tune into ‘Stallion’ a podcast hosted by Agnes – Clara Dikoum (available across multiple platforms).

While scrolling through her podcasts, a particular one titled “Pressure of Young Success”, caught my attention. With college back in the works, and graduation 2020 on my mind, the thoughts of success and what to do next, are constantly lingering in my head.

It’s crazy, isn’t it. We go from being children who couldn’t care less about what’s to come, to young people, who desire control in every phase of our lives. If you are anything like me, your mind begins to time travel – and ever so vividly, at that. You begin to imagine yourself 5 years older, financially stable, with a house, car, husband, and a secure job you love. All of which don’t occur overnight but somehow you begin to desire, that this could be your reality.

In May 2018, a survey undertaken by the Mental Health Foundation, found that six out of ten young people, between the ages of 18-24, have felt so stressed by the pressures to succeed, that they began struggling to cope with life’s demands.

Although alarming, these figures don’t even surprise me in the slightest.

In a world that is populated with pressure, not only from your family and friends, but also celebrities, influencers, ‘instagram goals’ and much, much more – it is so hard, not to get sunk into the idea that success occurs over night.

On a daily basis, we are fed unrealistic expectations of what life should consist of, how we should be living, or what stage of life we should be at.

For some of us, our goals are set to be completed by the age of 25 and for others it could be 30.

This mindset however, can be so unrealistic and detrimental for our futures.

I’m not saying you can’t be successful by the age of 30 – Forbes 30 under 30, already argues otherwise. However, it is important to remember that success is not always measured by power, status, fame and/or money.

The word success is described in the Cambridge Dictionary as “the [achievemnet] of … results wanted or hoped for”. These results are not limited to time and can be achieved on the straight or narrow path, depending on the individual and their resources. By staying determined and consistent, and by accepting failures, set backs and obstacles, we each have the ability to come out on top.

Don’t let other people’s definitions of success define you.

“Love the life you have, while you create the life of your dreams”

Love, Nyasha x

Stop underestimating yourself

Hi lovelies,

Before I get into this weeks blogpost, I just want to say my sincere apologies for not posting one last week. I was honestly so exhausted by the time it got to the weekend, and just kept experiencing writing blocks whenever I sat down to write. Thankfully I’m well rested now, the sun is shining and I am feeling super motivated to conquer the week!

Yesterday as I was scrolling through Instagram, I came across a quote that read “Stop underestimating yourself”.

Tomorrow, I start my final year in college – and I’d be lying to you, if I was to say that, I wasn’t feeling worried and overwhelmed. Quite simply, the thoughts of ‘THE THESIS’ scare me! When I think about gathering all the research involved in it, I start to undermine not only my abilities but also myself.

For some reason, in my head I have managed to construct the belief that I am going to walk into my Research Project module and be flung into the deep end with 0 assistance. However, in reality, I know this won’t be the case. I can be rest assured that my lecturers, friends and family will be there every step of the way – to offer guidance, support and encouragement when in need.

This year surely wont be the easiest but I will definitely pull through it.

“Sometimes when you are the closest to your breakthrough the pressure is the greatest. You have come too far to give up now!” – Joyce Meyer

Whether you are starting college, going into your final year, or embarking on a new life venture, do not underestimate yourself.

Believe in your abilities.

Each of us was born with the potential to do great things – but those great things can only come to flourish when we believe.

“You must expect great things of yourself, before you can do them”

Love, Nyasha x

Summer 2019, Recap

“You know all those things you’ve always wanted to do? You should go do them”

Hi lovelies, 

As we are drawing near to the end of summer now, I just wanted to do a quick recap of my summer, and all it had to offer me. This summer I vowed to myself to live life to the fullest and seize any opportunity to do things I found fulfilling. Although I didn’t get the opportunity to fly out to live my best life, or jaiye at Afronation, I can confidently say that, Summer 2019, you have been too good. 

Despite having started my summer sick and brittle, I quickly recovered after plenty of much needed rest and once better, I didn’t waste any time to start making plans with those I love. 

May

After 10 days of not seeing them, the college girls and I met up for a shopping trip in Dublin City. As someone who used not to be very confident in their navigation of the town, I was pleasantly surprised on how good my navigation was. We spent the day gallivanting, and to end the day we went to TGI Friday’s, on Temple Bar.

June

June was such a busy month for me. On the 2nd of June, I decided to finally bite the bullet and start this blog – meaning any spare time I once had, was and is now spent typing. However, thankfully, it has been such a wonderful and surreal experience thanks to all of you who have been reading them on a weekly basis.

Other than working and integrating blogging to my lifestyle, I also tried to spend some quality time with my family.

This was also the month that I got engrossed in all thing Love Island despite my original dismissal of the show. Without getting into too much detail, I’m actually happy that I ended up watching the show, as I gained some valuable life lessons (suprise suprise!!).

  1. Sisters before misters ALWAYS!!
  2. Be confident in you
  3. Always expect the unexpected

July

As some of you may know this year I was resident more so in Wexford than Kildare – meaning I had little to no time with my family and friends from home throughout the academic year.

July, however offered plenty of time for me to catch up with those near and dear. Roadtrips, cinema dates and everything in between were had.


August

As I am writing this, the month of August is not yet over. However, in the next two weeks I will, most likely be spending, most of my days in work, so I will not have much left to recap with you.

So far I have spent this month attending events such as Girlz Arize and CTY 15 hours of Praise. I’ve also been catching up with friends, embarking on road-trips and engaging in family time.

Overall, like I said at the very start of this blog post, I am very content with how my summer has gone this year. I wanted to be productive in whatever I found myself doing, whilst having a nice balance of work and fun – and I can confidently say I did just that.

“Be spontaneous. Be crazy. Leave your comfort zone and live with no regrets.”

Love, Nyasha x

My Midnight Lament

Hi lovelies,

As mentioned from the very creation of this blog – Nyasha’s Nook, is a space, I created to offer seclusion and security to those in need, including myself. In today’s blog post I wanted to take a more serious approach, which I hope will not only provide healing to me, but also to those around me who have been affected or who are in similar situations.

Without delving into the whole story, during the week, a situation arose, that caused me to utter the words – ‘I wish I was never abused’.

Later, as I was reflecting on those 5 small yet mighty words, I began to realize the effect everything was still having on my life, to this very day.

For many years I was aware, yet doubted the fact that I was ever a victim of such. However over the last year, I have come to realize that I was maltreated. I was taken advantage of, whether knowingly or unknowingly by certain individuals.

Without getting into the nitty gritty of it all, I still always question what my life would have been like, if I had never experienced the things I did. Would I have been more ambitious? Would I trust more? Would I have a higher self esteem? The queries only go on and on…

Despite the fact that the reality of it all, is horrific. I choose to not let it define me. I choose to let go of the hurt, bitterness and pain associated with the sheer thoughts of the experiences. I am deciding not to allow it to affect my life negatively any longer.

Yes, there will be days that it will be a lot harder to pick myself up from the bitterness, but I will at least make the effort to stand up tall, and to encourage those behind me.

The sad reality, is that, each of us has been abused in one way or another, whether sexually, physically, mentally, verbally, emotionally, financially and/or spiritually. These forms of abuse can occur, for both short and long periods of time, and their effects may vary from one individual to the next.

If you are reading this and you are/have been a victim of abuse, these affirmations are for you;

I am loved.

I am appreciated.

I am valued.

I will prosper.

I have a purpose.

I will succeed.

I will be patient with myself as I heal.

“Your past is just a story. And once you realize this it has no power over you” ~ Chuck Palahniuk

Love, Nyasha x

“You will overcome this”

Hi lovelies,

Yes, here I am, actually fulfilling my promise to deliver a second blog post this week. Congratulations to me!

Whilst scrolling through Instagram the other night (as you do), I came across a quote that read “YOU WILL OVERCOME THIS” – and I don’t know whether it was the pink writing the words were displayed on, or the words themselves that resonated with me. But I suddenly felt an undeniable sense of comfort.

I began to think about the post I saw on Instagram, at the start of the week, from an individual who was out for a walk but stumbled upon a teenager who had just received their results – under a tree branch with a rope straddling down, within seconds of taking their own life. I began to think about my family and friends who are going through times where they feel like all hope is gone. I also, began to think about me… and the things that worry me from time to time. The things I think I will never achieve or accomplish.

I then began to think about all the things that I had overcome, such as secondary school, consistent negative thinking, state exams and 2nd year college exams (cause those were a real struggle this year). I began to realize that at one point in time, I also believed that I would never overcome these things… but here I am. These things no longer give me any reason to cry or have anxious thoughts, concerning them.

Today I just wanted to encourage anyone and everyone… including myself, who may be reading this. I wanted to remind you that irrespective of the current tribulation you may be experiencing, YOU WILL OVERCOME! Trust me, I know it’s a lot easier to say when you are not in the moment yourself – but those 4 words hold a lot more truth than you may realize. You will overcome this, no matter what the situation may be. There is hope for you. You are not a failure. You are loved. You will succeed.

Love, Nyasha x

Tips for Settling into College

Hi lovelies,

So after many weeks of promises, I’m finally sitting down to deliver a blog posts that is college related. Firstly, in case I forget to formally say it, I want to wish each of you awaiting results next Tuesday, the best of luck. For those of you, who may be anxiously counting down the hours, just remember that everything will work out, even if it doesn’t seem like it will, at first.

“In the end everything will work out fine. If it doesn’t. It’s not the end”

As discussed in my previous blog post entitled “It’s Not Over… It’s Just The Beginning”, there are various routes with multiple ways, to get to your desired destination, so don’t ever lose faith. For those of you hoping to go into third level education, I have been asked to share some tips on settling into college.

In September I will be going into my final year of studying Early Childhood Education and Care in IT Carlow, Wexford Campus. Upon reflection on my first few weeks of college in first year, I came up with the following four tips for those of you, who will be continuing on into third level education in September.

1. Come Prepared

Unlike secondary school, college is based on self directed learning. Lectures are there to help their students, prior to assignments and exams, but ultimately it is the effort the student makes that will earn them their desired result. That is why it is so important to come to lectures prepared. Always have a notebook and pen at the ready to jot down any terms, or better yet assignment hints that are mentioned in passing.

2. Be open to new experiences, friends and opportunities

Whether you are going to college, university or a post leaving cert, it’s important to be open minded. The truth of the matter is, you are about to experience a whole new journey that you can’t always control. Allow yourself to experience new ideas and thoughts. Allow yourself to make mistakes, recognize them and get back up again. Be confident in you, what you stand for and your beliefs. Although college may seem like the next step after secondary school, it is in fact a whole new experience that will shape you not only as a student, but as a person – so allow yourself to experience that journey wholly.

3. Be organized

As mentioned above, college is all about self directed learning. Take my advice when I say, get a planner or even a notebook where you write all your deadlines in order of importance. College will be a lot easier for you, and those around you, if you stay on top of your assignments and readings. If you were one of them students who would leave their homework till the night or morning before a class, in secondary school, I would strongly advise you, not to carry that habit into college as it will only result in tears (*I’m not even being dramatic*).

4. Prioritize your time

College life has so much to offer – a new routine, new hobbies, new friends and new experiences. You may want to experience everything your college has to offer all at once, but remember to try not to take too much on, as you may risk burning out so early on in the year. Try to prioritize getting into a routine of attending lectures and meeting deadlines before you start taking on too much socializing – aim to strike an equal balance of the two.

In finishing I want to wish each of you, all the best, as the new academic year approaches, whether you are going into first year of college or not. I hope the year brings you joy, success and minimal stress.

Love, Nyasha x

Release.

Hi lovelies,

In today’s blog post I have decided to share my inner most thoughts with those of you… like me, who struggle with letting go. Yesterday, as I was decluttering my wardrobe, I noticed that I was struggling to set aside clothes I hadn’t used or worn in months, to either donate or throw in the bin. Although I was no longer in need of even half of them, I struggled to let go of the clutter because of the emotions and memories I had subconsciously attached to them. Later on, when I had completed the decluttering (to the best of my ability), I decided to identify why exactly I had struggled so much to let go of clothes that had served their purpose in my life. As my mind began to wander from this scenario, I found myself questioning my overall ability to let go and declutter in a general sense.

According to Breda Stack, clutter is “anything physical, mental or emotional, that doesn’t serve us or make us feel good”. Each of us has some sort of clutter in our lives, for some this clutter may be the heap of clothes you keep in that corner of your room, and for others, it may simply be the people you’re surround by.

Either way, decluttering is not only beneficial for our rooms, but it is also beneficial for our lives. By letting go of unnecessary baggage, we allow ourselves to release the negative emotions that suffocate us on a daily.

Thanks to Disney’s hit movie Frozen, I have reason to believe that most, if not all of us are familiar with the phrase “let it go”, but have you ever stopped to consider what it actually means to do so?

By letting go, we release all doubt, worry and fear concerning a situation, object, person or outcome. We let go of the things that disrupt our happiness and have seized to serve us on our journey. By letting go we decide to no longer reminisce on what is out of our control, but instead, focus on what is. Letting go creates new opportunities, by stripping away the past. It involves more than just singing ‘LET IT GO’. It is an internal process, that must occur for you to truly feel better. Although I am still working on this myself in multiple areas of my life, by writing this I hope to make a conscious effort to release and be freed from things that have had a hold on me.

I choose to fully accept the experience, situation, and purpose a particular item or person has had in my life and gain control of my present self.

No matter the situation it is important to always remember that you cannot alter the past. We must enjoy what is folding right in front of us without worrying about our needs, desires and wants in the future.

“In the process of letting go, you will lose many things from the past, but you will find yourself” ~ Deepak Chopra

Love, Nyasha x

Shauna’s Summer Social

Hi lovelies,

So last weekend, I was fortunate enough to attend Shauna Doyle’s very first event – ‘Shauna’s Summer Social”. I have been following Shauna’s Instagram for a little less than a year now, but I immediately fell in love with her content because of the authentic online presence she conveys across all her socials. I also love that she is very much an all round blogger and does not shy away from any category – this really stood out for her at her event, where she discussed all things makeup, fashion, biodegradable glitter, sustainabilility, relationships, love island, mental health, future goals and much much more. There was literally something for everyone.

In today’s blogpost I decided to share some highlights I captured, of the outstanding event. Shauna really went above and beyond with every single detail in order to host a fabulous blush babies event that was instagrammable.

Shuana’s Summer Social was held in the luxurius River Lee Hotel, a member of The Doyle Collection, in Cork. Upon arrval, each attendee was greeted, offered a glass of orange juice and photoraphed by @johnarthurphotos infront of the Blush Babies moon gate.

As I walked into the room more, my eyes quickly gravitated to each and every detail. Shauna did not miss any opportunity to personalize the event and make it her own. The whole room was embellished with baby pink tones, stamped with her logo. It was evident that she was involved in the entire organisation process.

As we all approached our seats, waiting for us, was the goodie bag Shauna had teased prior to the event, along with a programme and slithers of cake made by @traceofcakes.

Inside the programme, along with the schedule of activities and sponsors, was a page dedicated for us to jot down ‘what we learnt’, our ‘wishlist’ and ‘notes’. This was a fantastic addition to the programme as it gave each of us an opportunity to write down any products, tips and word’s of advice, that were mentioned as the event progressed. Once we were all settled Shauna then went up and welcomed us all, to her very first event. She spoke with such humility and gratitude, not only to her sponsors, friends and family, but also to us, her blush babies who support her on a day to day.

She then moved on to the first segment of the day, which was ‘Makeup’, where she was joined by Caoimhe (@caoimhebhmua) to do a makeup look on Lucy (@lulusbits). Throughout the process, Shauna and Caoimhe were generous enough to share all their tips, favourite products and answer the ‘hape’ of questions we all had. Once the dewy makeup look was complete, Shauna then invited us all outside for some lunch.

Moctails @thehitchingpost.ie Cupcakes @traceofcakes

After lunch we went straight into the the ‘Styling Session’. For this session, Shauna invited Ali (@ali123_), who is a student brand ambassador for Boohoo, to talk all things fashion. Shauna and Ali had both brought staple pieces from their wadropes, to give us tips on how to style them. I loved that they discussed sustainable fashion in this segment and how it is okay to wear an outfit more than once. Something I had never considered, that Ali mentioned was, if like her, you’re someone who loves wearing dresses and then struggles to switch the outfit up for another occasion, maybe try buying trousers/skirts and tops so that you can alternate pieces to switch up the outfit. The minute she said this it immediately resonated with me, as I am that person who buys dress after dress but never has any other way to change up the outfit besides the original way I wore it. I can’t wait to try out her tip next time I go shopping and see if I can save myself a few euros in the long run.

The final segment of the day, after another short break, was the ‘Q+A & Panel’ where Shauna was joined by four other fabulous ladies.

@carolbyrne30 @aoifeesull @niamhdebrun @cliona_o_hanlon

Together they discussed how they became the influential women they are today, while sharing the reality of their lives behind the screen. Each of them had their own experiences and goals which I really loved hearing about as there was something for everyone to relate to. They did not shy away from their truth but instead shared their raw real life experiences.

All in all, I really and truly enjoyed #shaunassummersocial. The time and dedication she put into the organisation of it all, in the months leading up to it, was really worth while. I wish events like this were on every single weekend. The whole event was very intimate and felt like a massive sister chat.

I am very excited to see what is next for Shauna, but for now I will hold onto what is now a fond memory of mine.

Love, Nyasha x