‘How to’ column

The Talon answers your ‘how to’ questions


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Erielle Ocampo, Opinion Editor

We always seem to have questions that need to be answered. So we asked the fellow students at Rochester to send a few “how to..” questions that they would like to expand their knowledge on! Thank you to everyone who submitted a response, enjoy!

How to be more open-minded:
Being open-minded especially when your opinion differs from others could be a hard skill to adapt to. One way to be more open-minded is by making sure you’re trying to see others’ perspectives and putting aside your own biases to truly understand their point of view. Also just spending some time to reflect on what you say and do can bring you one step closer to achieving this idea. Don’t be afraid to also do research on opinions and topics you don’t quite know about! The great thing about learning is that you’re constantly expanding it. Understanding the other side can help you see more of where they’re coming from. Remembering to keep things positive, especially when you’re in disagreement with another, can help ease the tension. Some ways of doing this are comprehending what they’re saying, not replying off of emotions, and just stating that you see their point of view.

How to wake up early:
Now, this is one of the hardest things for me to do, especially after restless nights. There’s really no way of getting yourself to naturally wake up unless you train your internal clock. This is called your circadian rhythm. It’s your body’s way of telling you when it’s time to wake up, eat, etc. If you’ve ever found yourself waking up earlier than usual on weekends after a few months of school this is to blame. Some hacks I have found helpful are setting as many alarms as needed. For me, I set them in intervals of 5 minutes. Don’t get me wrong it’s super annoying but it totally does the trick! Another thing is forcing yourself to immediately get up. I don’t know about anyone else but I have a bad habit of going on my phone right when I wake up. By forcing myself to turn on the lights or grab a drink of water, my body will have a harder time falling back asleep. It’s more about discipline than anything. Also, morning affirmations could be helpful. I know some people like reassuring themselves that they’re going to have a good day and that this day can only start if they wake up.

How to manage school, work, and still have a social life and time management:
Managing a busy schedule while also wanting to have fun can be exhausting but it’s possible. Time management is one of the most important factors. For me, keeping a planner with all important due dates helps me so much. Every day I include things that I know need to be done and things that can wait. I usually wait until around the weekend to socialize with my friends and family. Work is one of the hardest things to work around especially if your job isn’t that flexible with your schedule. Most jobs understand that you’re a student and factor that into scheduling. If you have extra time before you have to go in, getting easier assignments done can help you slowly check off your to-do list. Managing your time could easily play a toll on your mental and physical health. Always make sure you’re putting yourself first and not over-exerting yourself.

What’s your advice on managing a serious relationship while figuring out college and the future?:
Relationships and the idea of creating a future together can be tough to figure out. College and the future alone is a scary topic and including someone in it can be as well. A lot of people have the mindset that a long-distance relationship won’t last especially in the years to come, but I don’t believe that’s true. By talking it out with your significant other as well as taking into consideration your own future, you both will be able to work it out. But it all comes down to if you’re both willing to put in the effort. Little things like working out when you will be able to see each other, communication, and trust are such an important part of making serious relationships work. “Absence makes the heart grow fonder,” Not being able to see them can lead to a more meaningful time spent together when you’re able to see each other again. At the end of the day, no matter how far apart you both are, you both still share that special connection.

How to not be overwhelmed by stress:
Stress is a topic that for some people is hard to apprehend. Stress management is a hard concept to develop and incorporate into your daily life. Overwhelming yourself can be both detrimental to your mental and physical health. Anxiety, burnouts, and headaches are all common symptoms of overworking yourself. Over the past few years of high school, I have come up with a good system to have just the right amount of stress to keep me going. The most important thing is to make sure you’re checking in with yourself. Make sure you’re not pushing yourself too hard to the point of breaking down. I also believe that time management is such an important factor to tie into your life. What really helped me throughout the years was being a planner. I would schedule out my week and homework for the day. I would include deadlines, events I have to go to, and overall life. Stress doesn’t always have to be a negative thing. I have learned that stress can be a great factor in pushing yourself, but always to a certain extent. At the end of the day, you’re doing perfectly fine no matter how much stress is being pushed on you. There is never anything wrong with putting yourself first!