Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Where is my identity?

As a college student I'm involved in a lot of different things. I have 3 jobs, I'm in clubs, I'm on different committees, I'm involved in my church. I go to meetings, I go to work, I make important e-mails and phone calls. I meet with girls from youth group, I give advice, contacts parents. I do homework, write papers, study. I go to work, I go to class, I am all over the place. Lately, I have been getting enjoyment and fulfillment out of my commitments. I'm doing important things, I feel needed and I like that. It's left me questioning my motives and prayerfully considering;

Where is my identity? I desire for my identity to be found in the arms of Christ. For my importance to be found in His Will. For my foundation to be built on His good and holy name. I want 'Daughter of the King' to be the only title I find fulfillment in. I long for His name be the only name I seek and for anything I do be done for his glory and not my own. But that is not the case.
The path I'm taking is marked by God but if all else falls away- am I okay with simply being His? Am I living as though he is one part of my whole identity or the foundation on which all else is built? If every title, every relationship, every GPA point and excellent letter of recommendation were striped away would 'follower of Christ' as my identity be enough to satisfy me? Would I be able to dust myself off and continue because Christ is my foundation and he is unmovable?

The honest answer is no. 

I put a lot of pride into being liked, into being busy and to giving the persona that I do it all and rock at it. It's a fault and I often ask prayerfully- "Am I doing this because I feel God's leading or for my own pride and ego?" I need to take time to stop building my resume and start building my identity in Christ. I need to recognize that I will not always be a student or a nanny. As years pass I will drop those titles and pick up new ones. I will become a wife, I will become a mom, a therapist. Names, titles and commitments will come, go and morph as I grow and change,

but I will always be His.

8 of 100 days of happy

Care packages. I'm happy for care packages. My best friend and I, also endearingly referred to as 'Gwemily' go to separate schools. We have busy schedules and we don't always get to talk. However, we are basically the same person and have a schedule set that we each visit the other twice a year. Gwemily takes on Pittsburgh is quite the adventure. We always send each other packages and things throughout the year to encourage one another. She's better at it than I am- however she has one coming her way!

Monday, September 8, 2014

7:100 days of happy

I was going to try to catch up but instead I will pick up where I left off with day seven. This is what makes me happy today. New work-out clothes (Walmart- around $8 each!) that I don't work out in, and getting off of work early in time to catch a nap before night class. Sometimes it's the little things. 

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Life Management Binder for the College Student

Real talk for a moment: college is hard. It is nothing like high school and it's hard. College with ADHD is a whole new level of challenging. It feels paralyzingly impossible at first. My first semester I was handed a syllabus for all six of my classes. With the reading and assignments for the whole semester. That I have to keep track of in that planner I never opened past the first week in September. And I have to read 450 pages a night. In an environment with 50 other people around. all. the. time. It took dropping out, coming back, getting on medication and serious dedication to actually feel like I wasn't drowning.

It's a learning curve and it takes a lot of patience to find what works for you. One significant change I made was in the way of organization. Sometimes I felt so terribly dumb and behind because I learned differently and struggled to stay organized. There is NOTHING wrong with taking charge of your education even if it is in a different manner than that of your peers. 

On Pinterest I kept coming across "home management binders" and thought "college kids need this". After searching and searching I couldn't find one so I made my own. In this post I will give an outline of what I did to organize the important things in my life. I will include the printables in the future.

My binder has:

-A cute title page
-Tabs and sticky notes
-Class Schedule
-Textbook rentals
-Shopping List
-Meal planning
-Bank Account Information
-A folder insert for important documents

First, I made a pretty front page so I would actually want to open it.
Flawless, I know.

I have tabs and sticky notes I use to mark/note anything throughout the binder. (Note: I ended up using these less than I thought I would. I realized later they were more for show ;) 

I also keep a master list of my class schedule in my binder. The first few weeks of the semester it's helpful to have the class times, room numbers and professors names. I also keep their e-mail/office hours written down here so it's easy to reference. 

I rent my textbooks and I frequently forget where they're from and when to return them. I have learned the hard way that the "late fee" is not a joke. I keep this list of my rented books and when they're due so at the end of the semester I am not scrambling to return them. 

This is the first year I don't have a meal plan so grocery shopping and cooking is all new to me. However, I generally eat the same things on a daily basis. I wrote out a general shopping list to have so I can plan ahead for cost, where to shop, etc. 

Every Sunday I take the time to plan our my meals so I know what to buy or the ensure I won't be making any last minute stops for food. 

I have multiple bank accounts and I lose track of things easily so it is helpful for me to have all of this information in one place.

I have a pocket to keep all of my important things. I have my check books, my passport, my passport pictures, my social security card. I also have two envelopes one for my checks and cash to go into my account and one for tips from work. 

My organizational system is ALWAYS changing but this is how I keep my most important documents and information straight. Other management binders might include a calendar, a planner or an assignment list. I have a very specific calendar system that I may share in the future- so I don't keep that in my binder. 

How do you you stay organized? How do you manage ADHD in college?  

Thursday, September 4, 2014

I am a broken vessel

I am a broken vessel. I am entirely stained with mistakes and flaws. I speak out of line and I judge too harshly. I disregard God's word and doubt his promises. I blatantly put my needs first and ignore God's call to something else. I have stayed idle in my faith out of fear of rocking the boat, I have remained still when god's call is to "go". I am lukewarm in my faith simply because being on fire for God means being outrageously uncomfortable and unqualified. I am broken, flawed and completely imperfect. Despite everything that should be a disqualification for doing God's work- God has worked in significant and holy ways through me. God has and will continue to use my mistakes for his glory. God looked at the flaws, looked at the mess, look at the mistakes and said "I'll take it". For it is not through my perfection that I am used for God's glory. It is through his perfect love that my imperfect being can be used as a vessel for his good works. It is through humbly accepting the Grace for which I am so undeserving that I can be used as a power house for the kingdom of Christ. I myself am so unqualified to serve the King but he gave his life so that I may live abundantly. His only son died for my sins and that is all of the qualification I need. Christ's death gives hope as I strive to live in humility, to walk by faith and to love as Christ loved. Through perfect love and undeserved Grace I can rest in the arms of Christ despite my imperfections. I am a broken vessel but I am forever his and he will use me for his glory.

Monday, September 1, 2014

6:100 Days of Happy

My Apartment. I'm happy for my apartment. Mostly my room. My teal and red side of the room. My perfectly coordinated, overly matchy room. Matching makes me happy. My color scheme makes me happy. Pictures of my friends make me happy. Organization makes me happy. I'm living in an apartment for the first time and I feel like a grown up. I have to make my own meals and if I don't, I starve. I felt undeniably old remembering that I had to actually make the food I eat, not just swipe into a cafeteria. I have to cook and clean and do laundry. I have to work and do all the things I've done for the past three years but it feels so much more 'adult' when you do it from an apartment and not a tiny dorm room. So, my comfortable, organized, teal and red, shared with my best friend room makes me feel comfortable. At home. Less adult like. I don't know why. But it makes me happy, so that's enough. I'm happy for my apartment, mostly my room.