Everything will be alright in the end...

Wow it been a while since my last blog post. Let's see well I survived through finals week! Now I am back in lovely West Virginia. I was quite excited when I got out of my car because I thought that I heard someone playing jingle bells as I exited the car, only to realize that it was the firing of shot guns. No surprise there...it's dear season in West Virginia.
So last night I went to check my grades and realized that I had received a failing grade for a class that I didn't even know was a class or that I was enrolled in. Right now, I am having some difficulty getting it worked out but I hope that it can be resolved in the near future.
On another note, I am so glad that I read Paul Matson's blog post this morning. The main focus of the post was gpa vs. experience. Based on the evidence in the blog, it seems that in the world of journalism it's important to be well-rounded in both. After reading the post, I feel so relieved. Hopefully, I am on the right track.
Right now, I am just looking to the future and hoping that things will work out. As one of my favorite quotes says "Everything will be alright in the end. If it's not alright it's not the end" things will always work out. If not, I can always reference one of my favorite Tom Petty songs "I won't back down." Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Finals Week and Final Thank Yous

Hello! I hope exam week is going swiftly and productively for all of you…stick with it, we’re almost there! So, this week has contained a series of interesting twists and turns. Bethany are living life Facebook-free after having trusted individuals who shall remain undisclosed change our passwords for us (just as a warning, this course of action is not for the faint of heart). It’s been rough, but I feel I can safely say that I’ve gotten more studying done without the pressing need to change my status to “Nadine hates finals” or “Nadine is considering life as a hermit in the foothills of the Himalayans.” Anyways, on to the point of this post: this week in particular, I’ve had time to think about all the wonderful people in my life—both here at OU and at home. I’d like to point out something that our old buddy Matthew Kelly says about the people we meet in our lives:

Along the way you will meet many people. Some of them you will help, assist, advise. Others will help, assist, and advise you. It has been my experience that when you think you are there to help someone else, chances are they are really there to help you.
People are a gift. Each person that crosses through your life is a chance to love, a chance to really live.
Cherish people.

I’m not sure why this week I have been struck with this feeling of intense appreciation for all the friends and family I have in my life. Maybe I’m just sleep-deprived or experiencing some kind high brought on by an excess of Starbuck’s coffee. Perhaps it was the snow last night that looked so beautiful as it fell. Or maybe it’s the knowledge that after a few days I will have my first quarter as a college student under my belt. Whatever the reason, I am radiating the spirit of Thanksgiving and it feels amazing. I encourage you to do the same—take a step back and look at your relationships, both the failures and successes, the prominent ones and the seemingly minor, and say a little thank you for what these people taught you that you couldn’t have possibly learned on your own. Spread some love this upcoming break, I know I’ll be trying to! Until then, good luck on all your finals and have a safe trip home, or wherever your journey is taking you this winter.

The Communication Principle

So yesterday I was just sitting in the laundry room waiting for my clothes to dry while Bethany was jetting around being Miss Involved (she won the spotlight award at PRSSA!) and I started to think. Recently I’ve been wishing that I could understand people better and relate to them more. You know, just be able to see where they are coming from. I know this is kind of mopey, but I swear this post has a point. I was reminded of a book I had to read in high school called The Rhythm of Life by Matthew Kelly—particularly one chapter called The Communication Principle. I think if we all took the author’s advice on how to talk to people, the world would be an easier place to live in. Here’s what he says:

Let others talk. Avoid arguments. Don’t complain. Give honest and sincere compliments. Appreciate people. Always compliment more than you criticize. Compliment before you criticize. Invite input. Never be afraid to seek advice. Never criticize someone in front of other people. Be aware of other people’s desires. Find joy and pleasure through taking an interest in people. Only talk about yourself if asked. Smile—it is contagious and opens people’s hearts. Learn to listen. Remember other people’s names, it is music to their ears. Remember people’s birthdays and anniversaries—it shows you care. Encourage people to share about themselves. Engage people where they are—talk in relation to their interests. Help other people to discover their uniqueness, to feel special and important, without patronizing them. Respect other people’s opinions. Admit when you are wrong. Be kind and friendly to every person you meet. Ask questions people respond to positively. Encourage other people in their dreams. Try to see it from the other person’s point of view. Hold up ideals. Challenge people gently. Talk about your own failures. Appeal to higher motives. Always look for yourself in others and others in you.
Be clear, concise, open, and honest.

So dear readers, I encourage you to think about that list. What do you struggle with the most? I know for me it's seeking advice and admitting when I'm wrong. Until next time, let's all take Mr. Kelly's advice and be clear, concise, open, and honest...we all could use a little more of that in our lives.

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