Wednesday, September 17, 2014

My Two Favorite Apps for Productivity Did a Thing!

THE BEST THING EVER HAS HAPPENED! Yes, I'm serious. No, this is not an exaggeration. So you remember back in July when we talked about my three apps I use to be ultra productive? Well that hasn't changed at all. What has changed is my two favorites, Todoist & Sunrise, have made a baby!
Right after I shared that post, Sunrise contacted me letting me know that they were excited to announce that soon there would be a collaboration with Todoist. Which, of course got me so pumped. But I thought maybe they meant in the next year or so. Nope. They did it already. BAM.
For those of you still not sure what I'm talking about or why I'm so excited, let's take a closer look:

I use Todoist as a project managing system. At any given one time, I'm working on upwards of 10 projects big and small, so there's no way I can remember what needs to be done when without it. Todoist by itself is an amazing tool, but sometimes, I really just want to look at all my projects in a calendar view just to get a real sense of my time. And so I can make sure that I'm caught up in Senior Portfolio, Design 4 & my internship requirements, hah. 
Which is where this update comes in. See those grey boxes? They're tasks from different projects in my Sunrise calendar. Which is amazing. & As I mark things done on Todoist, they show up with a little check in Sunrise. WUT. <3
And if I don't want to open Todoist (say I'm on the go and just have a quick second to see what's due tomorrow) I can just open Sunrise, click on the grey box and a more detailed to-do pops up. They both have made it super easy to switch back and forth and keep the transition of projects pretty much just pure gold. 
All you have to do to get the apps to link is log into Sunrise and "add a calendar" on the side. Link up your Todoist & you're done! Super easy. I'm still not sure how to get the to-do's to not be grey, so if you figure that out, let me know! xx 
Either way, I couldn't be happier with this update and I can't wait to streamline my productivity even more! Have you used either of these apps? What do you think? 

Main image source

Monday, September 15, 2014

How to Get Motivated to Clean

I'M A PRETTY MESSY PERSON. I can't ever seem to keep my entire apartment clean. I envy those people who live magazine-perfect lives all of the time (my best guy friend being one of them-- hate him.)  and wish that one of them could come be my house keeper. But I think my messy-nature boils down to two things: 1. I have too much stuff; 2. I have no honest motivation. 
Yes, I'd love that magazine-perfect apartment. And yes, when I'm throwing a cock-tail party, boyfriend and I deep clean the crap out of my home and make it sparkle, smell divine & appear as if I'm one of those polished gals. But most of the time, I don't care that much. My close friends know me. A couple of them have even lived with me. So when they come over and I say "excuse the mess, it's not normally like this I'm in the middle of _____" they know I'm lying. And they love me anyway. So on a normal day, no real motivation. 
However, my sanity is needing some deep organization and decluttering, so I've figured out a couple methods that when joined together, really help me get the motivation to power through and get it done. 


I work / go to school / do homework / run a blog during the week. I can spare about 5-15 minutes a weekday towards picking things back up. But weekends are when I dedicate a good chunk of organizing / deep cleaning done. Most articles / blogs say that the best way to do it is 30 mins or more a day. Whatever. Mama ain't got time for all that. 

Clearly, Pinterest should be the first stop. Look at places, organizing spots / tips that appeal to you and what you're looking for. For me, that's glamorous, glamorous, glamorous. I saved the above photos to my phone & any time I started slowing down, I'd pull them up and remind myself what I was trying to accomplish.

You know what jams get you pumped. Play them. For me, that's peppy, fun girl power goodies OR some angry break up music. Hah. I just like a good ol' break up jam. (Boyfriend and I are fine, chill.) 

Every 30-45 minutes, take a break. But, don't lose momentum. Don't sit for too long & look at more inspiration when you are sitting. Keep finding eye candy that'll keep you motivated. Maybe dance a little. 

Normally, I'm not too sentimental as far as stuff goes, but I'll admit that I've held onto the same couple dresses throughout the entirety of college. Why have I held onto them this long? The short of it: some of them were expensive and I used to absolutely adore them, and one in particular, I keep hanging onto for the day that I somehow (miraculously) become a different body-type, hah. (It's just so cute!) 
But I read this article that talks about how to declutter in about 30 seconds by asking yourself if you were out shopping right now, would you buy this item? Styles change, attitudes & needs change. So if you wouldn't buy that item now, then toss it. (Or donate, or sell, or give to your bff.) 

No for real. Host a party. Nothing will motivate you to declutter, organize and clean quite like hosting a little party. Big house parties not your thing? Me either. Try a dashing cocktail party or a maybe a tea party or brunch! 

So get at it! Do you have any tips for getting motivated to clean? Are you one of those magazine-living type people or more like me?  I'd love to hear! xx 

Thursday, September 11, 2014

How To Survive a Stressful Internship

SOMETIMES, THINGS JUST DON'T WORK OUT QUITE LIKE WE PLAN. This goes across the board, of course, and in the case of internships, it can be rather heartbreaking. I myself have had four internships thus far and have enormously different experiences, ranging from love at first sight, to happy but not perfect, to just meh, to straight up hell. 
Besides the obvious reasons to do internships: 1. getting a job / building your resume / networking; 2. real world learn experience; 3. class credit, Internships are a wonderful way of crossing potential career directions off your list and narrowing your focus. They're also wonderful in helping you figure out what kind of place you want to work in. Because when possible, you want to make sure you're finding the job that has the atmosphere you'd be happy in for a long time. 
So for me, I've worked in marketing, social outreach, digital agency life and now editorial / magazine design. From these, I've learned a couple things about myself: 1. Environment matters to me. (I want fun, and where I feel like I'm part of a team.); 2. Cubicles are my personal hell; 3. I'm happiest when designing print-based materials or any kind of editorial design. 
And for the most part, my internships have been pretty helpful and eye opening. However, that being said, I did have one internship that was pure hell. I was shoved into a cubicle, openly picked on, left out of group things that were talked about right in front of me, ignored, made example of, had my designs ripped up and tossed aside for far - far- more mediocre work and just generally treated as a subpar human. There were times (more often then I'd like to admit) when I left on my lunch break, got in my car, drove half a block and just cried. 
The catch was I needed the money. It was my only paid internship & it paid really well. I also had made a commitment for the entire summer. And I'm one of those people that when I commit to something, I follow through. 
I was at this internship for 3 months so I actually learned a couple things on how to survive a stressful internship that I'd like to share with you. This obviously applies to internships, but can easily be applied to jobs in general. 

Everything is made significantly easier when you have someone you can talk to, someone on your side. Maybe it's another intern or maybe it's someone in a different department. If possible, find that someone. I still don't recommend gossiping or anything like that. But maybe you and your buddy can go on walks during lunch and catch up on non-work stuff. 

If you're at a place where you're getting a 30 min- 1 hr lunch, take it. Go for a walk; go to lunch; get out of the office. Do something fun even! There was a Target really close to my hellish internship and I'd often pop over for a bit of browsing / retail therapy. 

Something I did not do, but honestly should have: talk to someone about how you're being treated. The CEO of the company was a really lovely man who probably would have stepped in had I asked him to. I dreaded the thought of everyone else feeling like they'd won somehow by getting to me, which was why I never said anything. But I should never have let those people get away with it. They were bullies, straight up & it is NEVER ok to treat someone like they did, especially as an intern! Damn my pride, though.

I did a lot of breathing exercises at my desk. Every time I'd find out that something I'd been working on for weeks had been tossed aside (especially for subpar work) I was angry. Really angry. But when you give yourself a few minutes to breathe and try and clear your mind, it really does help. 

Especially if you're not taking this internship for school credit. This one, for me, just so happened to not be for credit, so I was quite lucky in that. However, I'm sure if it had been for credit, I could have gone to my advisor for help. As it was, eventually it just became too much for me. With three days left of my internship, I walked out.
Because at the end of the day, there was absolutely no reason for them to be treating me that way & for me to continue to sit there and be someone else's emotional and verbal punching bag. Yes, I could totally have stuck it out and finished those three days. But for me, those three days gave me a chance to be with my family and take some much needed time to lick my wounds and unwind. And frankly, it was my giving them the middle finger on my way out. 

Sometimes, people are jerks, work is hard & sh*t is just stressful. I hope you never have to deal with something like that, but if you do find yourself in a stressful internship (or job), please remember you're beautiful, talented and way-- WAY too awesome for that crap. "This too shall pass" right? Right. 
Have you had a stressful internship or job experience you'd like to share? Or any tips on how you survived it? We'd love to hear them all! xx