Tag Archives: posts

“Self confidence is the best outfit…”

hello aprilHey guys! Happy April ūüôā

This past month has¬†consisted of reading about a guy stuck on a lifeboat with a tiger (the book is called Life of Pi, or should I say, Life of Die…¬†*ba dum tss*), performing at MPA for chorus (and receiving a superior rating!!!), lots of writing (this book isn’t going to finish itself), spring break, meeting Lilly Singh aka Superwoman (AHHH!), performing in my first ever theatre production, getting inducted into Thespians (basically, the honor society for theatre… aka the dark side) and struggling with my self confidence.

Yes. Confidence. IMG_6656

The thing every girl thinks she has until…

You aren’t pretty.”

You need to put some makeup on.

She’s hotter than you.”

No one wants to date you.”

Lose some weight.”

I’m prettier than you are.

You aren’t good enough.

haters gonna hate potatoes gonna potateI know. It seems unreal that girls still get put down like that, but it happens. And from personal experience, allow me to say that it truly does suck.

All throughout freshman year, I struggled tremendously with self love. I didn’t feel comfortable going to school without contacts and eyeliner on, and “pretty” wasn’t a thing I considered myself to be.

Going into sophomore year, I was determined to love myself more and be confident in how I looked, regardless of what I was wearing.

I made a conscious effort to look in the mirror everyday and learned to love what I saw, whether it be a really tired Rina with glasses on, or a Rina with some really nice eyeshadow and a smile. Would you believe it worked?! I was happy with myself and I felt good starting my days.

But of course, this didn’t last for long.theres no need to be perfect to inspire others let others get inspired by how you deal with your imperfections

About a month ago, someone¬†at school called me ugly and told me I was “the most unwanted girl on the planet”. And I hate to admit it, but I let this person’s comment affect the confidence I had built up.

I no longer felt good about myself.

When I looked in the mirror, I detested what I saw and I desperately wanted to change my appearance. After months and months of telling myself I was beautiful and strengthening my self love,¬†I didn’t think¬†I was good enough.

My negative mindset tore me down and caused me to become super insecure. This led up to a really rough night I experienced just a couple weeks ago.

I was feeling especially horrible about myself and when a certain someone made a comment about how my achievement wasn’t a real achievement, I was pushed over the edge. In the moment, I felt like no one cared about me and I could not stop crying. I started wishing that I was better looking, more talented and anything but myself.

I was upset because certain people didn’t like me, but I was oblivious to¬†all of the people¬†who do.

we get so worried about being pretty lets be pretty kind pretty funny pretty smart pretty strongThat night, I vented to three close friends about how I was feeling, and each of them comforted me the best they could. I’d like to share a bit of what they said to me.

Friend #1:Rina, you’re very strong and level headed. Even though I haven’t known you for long, you’re one of the greatest friends I’ve had and you really understand me. You’re the friend that I needed at this point in time and you have no reason to be insecure when you’re such a great person. And if other people can’t see that, so what? To be honest, the only opinion that matters about you is your opinion.

Friend #2:Rina, it’s¬†okay. You’re self confidence does not need to be affected by anyone, alright? You are such a great person and you have me to support you and you have [Friend #1] to support you and you have your other friends to support you. You are good enough, I promise, and there are people who see that and people who¬†don’t. You don’t deserve to feel this way. Thank you so much for your friendship and for being a part of my life. You are good enough, and it doesn’t matter if other people don’t see that, because I do. And so should you.its nice to be told

Friend #3:First off, you’re gorgeous. Second, why does it matter? You are so strong and always such a positive person, and there is no way that one stupid comment should ruin all of that for you. There are so many people who look up to you and who want to be as inspiring¬†as you are. Sure, pretty is great, but it is in no way as important as being the amazing friend that you are.

its not your job to like me its mineMy friends brought a lot of things to light for me. Why wasn’t I paying attention to my opinion of myself instead of focusing on everyone else’s? Why couldn’t I see that I was good enough? And why did it matter that not everyone found me “pretty” when there are more important things than appearance?

The answer is simple:¬†I hadn’t learned how to love all of my flaws.courage is accepting that you're full of flaws and learning to love each and every one of them

When mastering my self confidence earlier this¬†year, I’d focused on loving the physical aspects of myself, but not my personality.

There, mis amigos, is the issue. I’d claimed to love myself,¬†but I didn’t. And because I didn’t love myself, the fact that others didn’t love me was an issue.

This is something common with¬†almost every teenage girl nowadays. We are so caught up in our looks and what others think of our physical appearance that we forget beauty isn’t just about how pretty we are. We are so caught up in making sure others like us that we forget to like ourselves.beauty isn't about having a pretty face it is about having a pretty mind a pretty hears and most importantly a pretty soul

The day you are able to see your flaws and love them is the day that you will truly be happy with who you are.

Recently, I’ve noticed that as I grow to love different aspects of myself, certain people don’t like me anymore. That’s going to happen. But the day I learn to love myself fully is the day the right people will love me. I’m going to be judged no matter what I look like and what my beliefs are, but I won’t be loved by the right people until I’ve learned to be myself and love who I am.there is nothing more rare nor more beautiful than a woman being unapologetically herself comfortable in her perfect imperfection to me that is the true essence of beauty

In other words, if someone doesn’t like you for who you are, then they aren’t someone you need in your life. When you are yourself, the right people will like you.

Be yourself. Be confident. Love your flaws.

Your flaws make you who you are.

And you are beautiful.

Until next time,

~ Rina Raj

Advertisements

When You Finally Finish Your HW at 3am… :/

hello-marchHi guys! It’s already March, can you believe it?¬†ūüôā

I’m super excited for the rest of this month. ūüôā My grades are good, I¬†just turned 16 (AHHH), and I’m making progress with my book!

All in all, 2017 is going good as of yet.

However, the new year has had great fun in kicking my butt with insane allergies, rehearsals (not that I’m complaining), class selections for next year (YIKES) and sendingbrian one of my closest friends to Canada for 2 years… *cries*

Oh, and lots and lots of HOMEWORK! -_-

Homework has never been something I’ve deemed necessary to complain about (and definitely not anything I thought I’d ever write a blog post about), but since the school year started, I’ve found myself being very stressed about my assignments. And because I am determined to have good grades all year, I’ve been losing a lot of sleep and personal time over it.

I knew that it couldn’t be just me that was experiencing¬†this, and so I decided to reach out to other high school students and see how they felt about homework. I created a survey and received responses from 50 high school students, the majority of which attends my high school.

Some stats that I gathered from the survey results are:

  • The majority (62%) of students go to sleep either 11p.m. or later on school nights.
  • The majority (56%) of students get up at 6am on school days.
  • The majority (48%) of students spend 3-4 hours on homework¬†each night.
  • The majority (68%) of students receive 3-4 homework assignments every day.
  • The majority (62%) of students have 2-3 days to turn their assignments in.
  • The majority (60%) of students say they enjoy homework depending on the class subject. The other 40% said they do not enjoy homework at all.

just-me-when-i-finally-finish-my-hw-at-three-amNow, looking at the stats and keeping in mind that there is¬†only 24 hours in a day, we can infer what a typical high schooler’s day is like.

The day would start at about 6am, which is almost an hour and a half before school starts (in my case, it starts at 7:20am). The school day would then commence for the next 7 hours (in my case, school ends at 2:20pm).

If we assume that the majority of high school students participate in some sort of extracurricular activity, tacking on another two hours after school to compensate, then the average high schooler would get home around 5pm.

Following the stats I gathered, the average high schooler spends anywhere from 3-4 hours on homework per¬†night. ¬†Assuming they start their homework as soon as they get home, they’d be finished¬†with their homework around 9pm. As relayed in the stats above, the average bedtime is 11pm, which leaves about 2 hours¬†in the day for eating, showering, chores, etc., and provides¬†7 hours of sleep before they’d have to get up for the next day.

High school students are not exaggerating when they say the majority of time is taken up by education!

I asked a few of the students that responded to my survey if they had any additional thoughts on homework, and these were some of the responses:

“The first day of school, I got 5 hours of homework and I thought it was ridiculous. Also, please tell teachers¬†not to plan PROJECTS during¬†exam week. Also, please don’t give us homework on our exam week because we need to study!!!! Also, don’t give us homework over breaks. That’s why they call it a break. Lastly, LESS HOMEWORK ON THE WEEKEND. One more thing, since I have 5-6 hours of homework a night, and I go to bed at 10, that leaves me with 1 hour to relax when I get home and 1 hour to shower. And that’s it! I have to cram in dinner everyday WHILE I’m doing homework. Ok I’m done.”

“I understand its importance in school, and students need to play a huge part in lessening the too-much-hw-too-little-timecomplaint and the culture of hate against it. However, the work is indeed growing in intensity, and not for the best benefit of the student. It is important for everyone to keep in mind things are best in moderation if they are intended to be good at all.”

“Mostly a waste of time.”

“It is a waste of time that you could use to do be¬†productive.”

“It stresses me out and doesn’t help when teachers assign extra homework that is unnecessary. If I need help with something, doing it wrong multiple times later at night isn’t going to help on tests or in the long run.”

“A lot of homework is unnecessary and provides more stress than it does to help the student understand the material, especially when a student doesn’t understand the work assigned.”

“Homework helps, only if I understand the topic. If I don’t understand the topic, it’s very complicated and boring. This usually means that I’ll have to look up a video on that topic so I could understand it.”

homework-what-are-you-doing“We shouldn’t have it. It sucks.”

“It’s ok but I feel like it’s so much!”

“Why, unless it’s unfinished class work?”

“I hate it. It stresses me out.”

“Although I don’t receive much homework this year, in my past three years of high school I have spent countless nights stressing over it or just giving up on it all together which in turn, made me fail a lot of my classes even though I did well in the class.”

“It’s not fun.”

“Teachers should give a more manageable amount of homework.”

“I find it useless, sometimes my teacher only does notes and relies on me to practically learn it myself just to do a homework assignment.”

In my opinion, homework isn’t entirely a bad thing. In fact, I find myself learning from it every day. However, I also find myself having little to no time to relax and focus on myself, my health and my relationships with others.

I’m not saying we shouldn’t have homework at all. I’m saying there needs to be a balance.

Based on the way many high school students view homework, I think a way to solve the problem would be to lessen the amount of homework each student is given per night. Homework should be no more than two hours per night. And to make sure students enjoy the process of homework, teachers might want to be more creative when assigning homework. For example, I personally despise reading and taking notes out of a textbook, but I absolutely love foldables and educational competitions like Jeopardy.

When learning and homework can be described as fun and interesting, it’s not all that¬†bad.

How much of your time is dedicated to homework each night? Do you think teachers should give less homework? And if so, how can we make that happen?

Share in the comments below and let’s discuss! Parents, you’re welcome to join in too. ūüėČ

Until next time,

~ Rina Raj

 

 

Amy’s Summer Dilemma – What Would YOU Do?

Hi everyone! Thank you for all the wonderful comments on my last post! ūüôā

Recently I encountered a situation that my friend is going through and I just had to write about it. For privacy reasons, I won’t use her¬†name. So lets call her…. Amy.

Amy has big dreams for her future. One of the reasons Amy and I are such good friends is because we are both striving towards the same career goals.

Amy wants to become an actress and a musician. This summer she decided to become a bit more passionate about it by taking several theater camps and joining a band.IMG_1872

Amy’s parents are divorced and so her dad usually takes her most¬†of the summer. A couple of days before school ended,¬†Amy’s dad gave her a very difficult decision to make, and it was a huge surprise to her.

Her dad told her that he wasn’t going to take her to and from the camps, or band practice, and that she had to choose between her family (him) or herself.

Amy’s dad has never been very stable with his schedule and has been cancelling weekends as long as she can remember. So Amy decided to do what her dad always does to her.

She chose herself.

Amy feels like her dad doesn’t support her dreams and her goals for the future. After constantly telling her that she needs to show more passion towards¬†acting and music, her dad makes it seem as though she is¬†selfish for choosing to take summer camps and have band practices while on his time.

This is a big deal to Amy. She feels as though she was making the wrong decision and being selfish for choosing herself over her family.

But in truth, she’s not being selfish at all.

She’s following her heart, and when following your heart, it can nIMG_1875ever steer you wrong (or can it?).

Amy was under the impression that she would¬†still see her dad on the weekends and during the weeks when she didn’t have any camps.

But boy was she wrong.

Amy’s mom received¬†an email from her dad saying that due to the camps and his schedule, he wasn’t going to be taking Amy at all over the summer.

Amy was torn.

That night, she had a mental breakdown and couldn’t stop crying.

She was an emotional wreck for two or three days after, then she decided that she didn’t want to spend her summer in tears. She was going to make the most of it.

She scheduled longer band practices, wrote more songs and did IMG_0775whatever she could to take her mind off of it. Everything except calling her dad.

Amy is at a¬†point where she doesn’t care anymore. She’s made it pretty clear that she’s done with the drama. She’s decided to not call her dad throughout the summer and to just take a break. The thing that shocks both Amy and myself is her contemplation of not visiting her¬†dad for the rest of the year.IMG_1874

After being let down time and time again by her father, on his weekends, Amy’s decided that it‚Äôs her turn to choose herself.

She’s going after her dreams, with or without her dad’s support. And I have to give it to her, she’s a strong and talented girl.

Now I have a question for all of you my readers…

IMG_1873If you were in Amy’s position and had to make a choice, what would you do?

Please share your comments in the area below. Amy and I are really interested in reading what you have to share. She could really use some advice and support.

Thank you for reading my blog post everyone. I hope you all are enjoying your summer so far! Until next time! ¬†ūüėÄ

– Rina Raj