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  • Articles, College, Confidence, School

    5 Things I Wish I Could Tell my High-School Self

    high school advice

    5 Things I Wish I Could Tell My High School Self

     

    If I had the choice to travel back in time to my first day of high school, to do everything differently, there’s no way I would do it. High school played its part in shaping me into the woman I am today. If I had a choice to send a letter to my 14-year-old self, however, I would give that girl supporting words and advice on how to carry herself. Words that I think every high-schooler should live by.

    Be okay with being alone.

    You’ll run into days when it feels like nobody is on the same wavelength as you like everyone else lives in a different dimension. Don’t strain yourself to fit in with the “cool” group. Don’t try to find a boyfriend because it’s what everyone else is doing. You’re always going to be your own best friend, so the sooner you accept yourself for everything you are and everything you’ll become, the sweeter life will be.

    Get comfortable with being uncomfortable.

    This is going to play a big part in preparing you for life outside of high school. Ask yourself, what’s the worst thing that could happen? Take risks. When you challenge yourself and push your own boundaries, you open the door for beautiful, unexpected things to happen.

    Don’t worry what others think of you.

    Tell yourself this every morning when you wake up. And again in the middle of the day. And again. And again. Everyone is so concerned with what they’re doing and how they’re portrayed during high school, not what others are doing. Focusing on your own happiness and success will lead to the best memories.

    Stop worrying about the future.

    I was notorious for this in high school, and consequently, it tainted my final two years. Trust me, you’ll do well on that test. You’ll be accepted into a good college. You’ll find a career doing something you love. There come a time and place to focus on those thoughts, but don’t stress out about it too much right now.

    Realize that high school doesn’t last forever.

    You might not believe it right this moment, but you’re going to miss the hallways you stroll down each day. You’re going to miss those homework assignments because trust me, they get a lot harder. You’re going to miss seeing those familiar faces every day. While there may be some excruciatingly painful parts of high school, you never realize what you’re going to miss. Don’t take a minute of it for granted. Don’t be in such a hurry to grow up; be present in each moment.

    Just take the moment to soak it all in, because when you look back you’ll think that is so high school. Think about that and other advice in the article “It Will All Be Over Soon.” 

  • Articles, College, School

    The Final Pages of your High School Chapter

    The Final Pages of your High School Chapter

    High school seems like it lasts a lifetime. And then, in the blink of an eye, it’s over.

    Before you realize it, you’ll be cheering on your team at the last home football game, hardly registering the fleeting experience due to the overpowering noise from the bleachers and marching band.

    Soon after, you’ll be adding the finishing touches to your makeup, preparing to slip into your last prom dress.

    Although it may seem like a relief, in a few short months, you’ll be walking into harshly lit hallways and classrooms for the final time. You never realize how much you’ll miss the rooms that had the supernatural ability to make five minutes seem like a full hour.

    Speaking from personal experience, it’s easy to wish away the final days of high school. It’s easy to see everything from a negative perspective– too much homework, too many responsibilities, too little sleep.

    Don’t fall victim to that mindset like I did.

    Enjoy the time you have left with your friends; although you may spend eight or more hours with them now, soon, you will all be dispersed throughout the country, living different lives.

    If you’re involved in sports, give your full effort without taking the game too seriously. Some of my favorite memories began with goofing around with my best friends at track practice. This will also be the last time someone forces you to exercise… take advantage of that.

    Go all-out during spirit weeks and pep rallies. You’re not going to remember how silly you looked, you’re going to remember how much fun you had doing it. Don’t dull your high school experience by worrying about what others think.

    High school is a whirlwind of stress and emotions, but somewhere in between all of that mess, lifelong memories were made. Don’t take the time you have left for granted– live in the moment. Spend that extra hour with your childhood friends.  Dominate the dance floor at prom. Attend every sporting event that you possibly can, and don’t be afraid to cheer at the top of your lungs.

    These are the final pages of this chapter of your life. Make the most of them.

    Check out this letter from a college student to a high school senior. And remember you’re only in high school once!

    Even though you may be starting your senior year, that doesn’t mean you don’t have a chance to grow and change. Here’s some advice on how to your own person in high school

  • Articles, Cooking, Food, GirlSpring.com, Health

    More Smoothies to Keep Your Summer Cool

    smoothie

    Summer is approaching fast, and so is the excruciatingly high temperatures that come with it. In order to beat the heat this season, hydration is a must– and what better way to accomplish that than with fruity, satisfying smoothies? 

    Below are a few simple, refreshing recipes to help you cool down this summer, sipping by the poolside. All you need to do is gather the ingredients, blend together and enjoy! 

    Pineapple Mango Smoothie

    Ingredients: 

    • ½ cup of pineapple juice
    • ½ cup of canned coconut milk
    • 1 cup of frozen mango
    • ¾ cup of frozen pineapple
    • ½ of a frozen banana

    You can modify this recipe by using a different substitute for milk or adding spinach or kale for a healthy twist. 

    Find the full recipe at https://www.iheartnaptime.net/pineapple-smoothie/.

    Strawberry Lemonade Smoothie

    Ingredients: 

    • 2 cups of frozen strawberries
    • 1 cup of ice
    • 1 cup of lemonade

    Simple, sweet and sour! This strawberry lemonade smoothie would be perfect at a picnic or pool party. Add a flavor to your lemonade, such as strawberry or raspberry, for some extra flavor.

    Find the full recipe at https://recipeforperfection.com/strawberry-lemonade-smoothie-recipe/.

    Watermelon Peach Smoothie 

    Ingredients: 

    • 3 cups of chopped watermelon
    • 1 ripe peach, sliced
    • ½ cup of plain coconut milk (refrigerated, not canned)
    •  A handful of ice
    • Mint for garnish (if desired) 
    • 1-2 tablespoons of honey to sweeten (if desired)

    Since watermelon is mostly water, this smoothie won’t only satisfy your cravings, but it will quench your thirst. 

    Find the full recipe at https://www.seasonalcravings.com/watermelon-peach-smoothie/.

    Peanut Butter Espresso Smoothie

    Ingredients: 

    • 1 frozen banana
    • ¼ cup of peanut butter
    • 1 teaspoon of espresso or instant coffee powder 
    • 1 tablespoon of maple syrup

    Ditch your boring cup of iced coffee this summer with this energizing, refreshing smoothie. Coffee is a must-have in my everyday routine, so I’m always looking for new, delicious ways to consume it, like this recipe. 

    Find the full recipe at https://thealmondeater.com/peanut-butter-espresso-smoothie/.

    Smoothies are easy to make, taste amazing and will cool you down in the upcoming hot weather– what more could you possibly be looking for? These recipes, plus some other GirlSpring smoothies, will quickly become one of your summer staples.

  • Articles, Relationships, TV

    Relationships on “The Bachelor” = Bogus

    the bachelor

    The country is currently in a craze over this season of “The Bachelor” on ABC. Will Colton find a wife at the end of this season? Will he have to forget about Cassie, his one true love, and choose one of the other two girls? Will he ever find his way back after jumping over the fence?

    It’s hard to escape all of the hype over this season, and over the show in general; you have to admit, even if it’s cheesy and mindless, “The Bachelor” is contagious. It’s inescapable. One of my favorite days of the week is Monday, because it means I can curl up with my friends on the couch, turn on the TV and become enveloped in the inevitably dramatic episode.

    Admittedly, I’m obsessed with this show, similar to most girls around my age– but that doesn’t mean I’m not aware of its unrealistic, unhealthy aspects. I grew up watching “The Bachelor,” and after a few real relationships of my own, I can confirm the show is a hoax.

    It’s impossible to establish a meaningful, loving relationship in six weeks. It just can’t be done. “The Bachelor” teaches young girls that love comes easily and effortlessly, when in reality, most of the girls on the show are exaggerating their emotions, believing their efforts will result in a marriage.

    It’s Reality TV, Not Real Life

    You can’t truly understand everything about a person in six weeks. The bachelor or bachelorette is forced to make decisions based on the little information they have, which, unfortunately, usually only consists of physical appearances. Theoretically, in this show, the love of someone’s life could be sent home on the first episode; the connection is never made, teaching viewers that all relationships are based on looks. Real life isn’t like that.

    The extravagant dates, international travel and seemingly natural “connections” aren’t part of a real relationship. Regardless of being called a reality TV show, “The Bachelor” isn’t real. It’s entertaining, but fake.

    If you find yourself watching this show, wondering when your picture perfect guy is going to pick you up in a helicopter, fly you across the country and propose to you… stop. Don’t base expectations of your love life on this show.

    It’s okay to admit you like watching “The Bachelor.” We all do. But it’s not okay to believe the authenticity of those relationships, believing that’s how love is supposed to look. Real relationships don’t need a script.

  • Articles, Fun, GirlSpring.com, Makeup

    Summer Beauty Must-Haves for a Natural Look

    summer beauty must-haves

    Let’s face it: we all feel a little prettier in the summertime. Sun-kissed skin, wind-blown, natural hair and minimalistic makeup all complement each other for a less-is-more look.

    Although it’s easier to sit poolside or run a few errands with a bare face, some summer events require a bit more effort; instead of caking on makeup or relying on lots of products, highlight your natural assets with these summer beauty must-haves. 

    Sunscreen

    Sunscreen is the ultimate beauty secret; by actively protecting your skin, you’re setting yourself up to look more youthful and radiant, now and in the future. Most times, you can even find multiple products in one, such as a moisturizer, skin perfecter and sunscreen. 

    Affordable products can be found at Target, Amazon, or the brand’s website.

    Waterproof mascara

    Whether you spend your days in the pool or the weather is excruciatingly hot, waterproof mascara is a summer staple that will benefit everyone. Longer lashes can complete any makeup look, regardless if you’re pairing it with a few other products or using it by itself. 

    A neutral nail polish

    Summer = sandals season. If you’re anything like me, your days are spent either barefoot or in comfortable sandals, and being self-conscious of your toes is the worst feeling. Since jewelry is less common in warmer weather, a neutral polish, such as light pink or white, is the perfect summer accessory. 

    Liquid blush

    Sometimes a pop of color is all you need. Powder makeup, whether it’s foundation or blush, looks cakier as the weather gets hotter. By choosing a liquid product, your skin will thank you for not being suffocated. It lasts longer, too! 

    A soft eyeliner

    For a nighttime look, a little something extra is required; by investing in a brown or gray eyeliner, you’ll be giving your eyes the pop they need without looking too harsh. 

    Highlighter 

    Paired with the glow of your perfectly tan skin, highlighter will give an extra shimmer to complete your dewy look. A little bit goes a long way and can completely transform your natural makeup look. 

    Standing alone or paired with these other products, any of the listed summer beauty must-haves will heighten your natural beauty, without stealing the show. 

    A natural and quick makeup look isn’t only for the summer. A simple routine is great year-round, so check out ours!

  • Articles, GirlSpring.com, Music

    Living Life Like a Metal-Head

    I am a 20-year-old college woman who listens to heavy metal music. Yes, we exist.

    Assuming most people have never been to a heavy metal concert, I can assure you there’s nothing else in the world quite like it. I was raised on the genre and have been to my fair share of eardrum-bursting venues; I have been an accidental mosh pit member more than once.

    From the outside looking in, these gatherings may seem like a mob of tattoos, piercings, and alcohol; I don’t look like I fit in. But the best part? You don’t have to.

    Never in my life have I felt more comfortable than when I’m at these concerts, jumping and screaming along with a band and thousands of my closest friends.

    In those moments, I feel closer to strangers than some of the people I’ve known my whole life.

    I understand the music is scary; I never understood why I was attracted to the metal community until this summer.

    A few weeks before the fall semester started, I attended a Breaking Benjamin and Five Finger Death Punch concert with my family. I could hardly contain my excitement as we pushed through crowds of all-black clothes and multi-colored mohawks.

    I learned valuable life lessons that day, and it didn’t hit me until Five Finger Death Punch snarled the song “Jekyll and Hyde” into the microphone.

    Heavy metal concerts are the most accepting environments I’ve ever been in. Every single person in the audience is vastly different, but when we’re all together, we’re a family living the same experience. No phones were out—we were only focused on connecting with the music and each other.

    We had nothing in common except for the music.

    Although I didn’t realize it until that very moment, metal concerts have been teaching me my whole life to always live in the moment and be accepting of others. And it’s shocking that something most people perceive so negatively has had such a positive impact on my life.

    Metal-heads have it all figured out.

    It doesn’t matter who you are or what you enjoy—we all need to live life like it’s a heavy metal concert.

    Want to know more about Heavy Metal? MIT has a brief history of it. Here is a playlist of the best metal, headbang away:

  • Articles, Body Image, GirlSpring.com, Health

    Love the Skin You’re in

    Is there really such a thing as the “perfect body?” Even models and actresses who are deemed to be the pinnacle of beauty are judged and insulted on the covers of magazines, the Internet, and entertainment TV shows. Most of the pictures we see are airbrushed or photoshopped, anyways.

    We See the Infatuation with Our Bodies Everywhere… Since Before We Can Remember

    If even our idols are body-shamed, is there any hope for us “normal” people? If stars have to alter their bodies to feel comfortable in their own skin, how are we expected to?

    Allow me to let you in on a little secret: the perfect body doesn’t exist. It’s a myth. It’s a fabrication.

    Nowadays, Instagram models, fitness gurus and everyone in between strives to achieve body perfection with a small waist and big butt. But guess what? The nineties were all about big boobs, long legs, and thigh gaps. Before then, especially during the fifties, the “hourglass figure” was all the rage. Dating all the way back to the Renaissance, you exhibited your status and wealth through your weight; being well-fed was the ultimate test of beauty.

    Marilyn Monroe, one of the most well-known sex symbols, would be considered “fat” by today’s model standards. Let that sink in.

    Marilyn Monroe

    Need help keeping up a positive body image? Look at some ideas here!

    Just because We See what’s ‘Ideal’ doesn’t mean We Have to Be That

    Although society always seems to have its own opinion on beauty, none of it really matters. Loving yourself and embracing the body you’re in is the highest form of perfection.

    Some girls are always going to carry a little extra weight on their stomach, regardless of how much cardio or toning they do. Some girls will have cellulite and stretch marks their whole life, but others might devote their energy towards gaining weight, forever unable to do so. Girls with naturally bigger boobs might save all their money to receive a breast reduction, while others dream of buying implants their whole life.

    No matter the body type, every girl spends years and years trying to come to terms with how they look; some never reach clarity and acceptance. In this era of social media, body-shaming and comparison worsen the issue.

    It may take some time, but we all need to make more of an effort to embrace not only our bodies but everyone else’s as well, supporting other girls whenever we get the chance. There will be some difficult days, but we all need to accept the same mantra: every body is the perfect body.

    body positive

    Everyone’s journey to being healthy is different, check out one girl’s story here.