• How I Make a Positive First Impression Every Time

    When I was younger, I had no inclination of the importance of a good first impression. I was full of awkwardness and emotions and completely unsure of how to deal with it all, which probably applied to all of us at some point. Allowing negativity to take over, I feared change and resisted making any effort at the beginning of new friendships and relationships. I later realized that the more negativity I put into the world, the more I negativity I got back. The better choice would have been to allow love and friendship into my life, which would have sooner facilitated my self-growth. I’ve learned that starting off on…

  • I Silenced My Voice and Lost My Authenticity

    I had an aching feeling that people didn’t know the real me. I felt like each day I was treated and talked to in ways that didn’t reflect who I was at all. As much as I hated this and I couldn’t be fully myself, I struggled to use my voice to speak up and communicate who I was with the world around me. I was afraid of losing the comfortable sense of identity that I had gained among my friends and acquaintances. But at the same time, I wanted desperately to be myself. It felt like I was a caricature of what others thought of me. I envied those…

  • How to Really Apologize

    Saying you’re sorry can feel incredibly intimidating, especially if your pride is exceptionally strong, which can get in the way of the ability to be fully sympathetic with another person in conflict. The good news is there’s a way to improve And, what exactly makes an apology sincere? Emotional display is key for the success of your apology. If you’re angry or on the verge of tears, your apology probably won’t be received the way you intend, no matter how pure your intentions are. You can research and try all kinds of ways to get yourself into the right mindset for an apology. The fastest and easiest way to obtain…

  • Bullying Isn’t Going Anywhere

    Bullying is an issue that unfortunately doesn’t seem to go away much with age or maturity. I wouldn’t have appreciated hearing this when I was going through it in middle school, but I probably needed to. Middle school was a challenging time for me. It seems to be that way for most people. According to DoSomething.org, “90% of 4th through 8th graders report being victims of bullying.” That’s almost everyone, which indicates many students are likely being bullied while simultaneously bullying others. I attended a small private Catholic school, from kindergarten through 8th grade, with roughly 25 students in each grade. Elementary school was relatively easy going and I developed…