Remember birthdays

Birthday is the most important and happy day of the year for anyone. One feels special, expecting attention. It is also a day to connect with your old friends whom you may not have talked to in months. You can just be like “Hey! whacha doin?? any plans?” and the conversation starts. People like it when you wish them. You would like it if everyone you know wished you on your birthday. Won’t you?

Did you wish your professor on his birthday? 

I always try to do so. Last year, I got a surprise birthday wish from my Dean. Can you imagine? He wished me on mine because I wished him on his. He felt obliged. I was shocked he remembered! I realized how easy it is to build connections by doing this simple thing.

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Therefore, I’m asking you to remember birthdays as well. Starting from the professor to the RAs and TAs, make a list of birthdays of all your professional contacts. Wishing birthdays is an easy way to get noticed. You will definitely need their help throughout your college and it would be smooth if they remember you. It will also sharpen your communication skills and give you a bit of acquaintance with them.

Even if you know you won’t be needing their help, it is good to wish people. It doesn’t hurt to put a smile on someone’s face.

Today, make a list of birthdays. Birthdays of every person you know (or want to know) personally (or professionally). Remember to wish them. If possible, wish them on their religious holidays also although some people don’t like to be stereotyped with a religion.

Put a smile on someone’s face today! Who knows, you might be the only one who remembered.

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Back to business

Hey there! I can’t tell you what life changing things have been going around lately with me and I’ve not been able to concentrate on writing. Thank you for keeping patience all this time. I am finally back in action. I shall start posting everyday from now on, except on Sundays.

To my new followers, welcome to my blog. I’m a student just like most of you and I’ve a lot of college stuff to share with you guys. Stay tuned!

Increasing efficiency: get organized

Getting organized is not easy. By organized I not only mean getting your room straight but also your digital and professional life. It is very tempting to be messy because students having “don’t give a damn” attitude are considered cool. I get that. But it will not help you in the long run. When the time comes, you will blame yourself and regret not putting your affairs in order. Sooner you realize this truth, the better. Start today and get organized.

Set goals

dreams

To get anywhere, you must know where you are going. Ask yourself what you want to be in 5 years? Note it down. Break down your goals into yearly bits. Decide what you want to be by next year. What are your dreams? Put deadlines. Break them down into monthly and weekly to do lists.

Start with your room

Always have a tidy and clean room. Creative energy gets blocked by clutter and you are unable to concentrate. Sort out all your stuff and throw away or donate whatever you don’t use. Here are some tips to declutter your room:

  1. A golden rule of thumb is to throw away anything you haven’t used in a year. Of course it excludes collectibles and stuff with sentimental value. But do not cling on to things that get you down.
  2. Make three piles of clothes: one you like and wear often, one for the classy and the ones you saved for special occasion and one for the ones you want to donate. Throw away the rest or recycle. CLOTHES
  3. Make a rule: for every new piece of clothing you buy, remove an old one from your closet. Donate, recycle or throw it away.
  4. Make a place for everything you keep. Do not have a miscellaneous area. It is a trap. If something doesn’t belong anywhere, there is no use keeping it.
  5. Have your supplies ready. It is frustrating to trying to find a pen that works among a bunch of used up ones. Throw away stationery items you can’t use.
  6. Do your laundry once a week at least.
  7. Clean your room at least once a week. dust, vacuum and wipe off the surfaces.
  8. Check regularly to see if you have expired cosmetics, medical supplies and food; throw them away.
  9.  Make your bed first thing in the morning.
  10. Make shopping lists any time you need something. Do not buy impulsively.

Declutter your laptop and phone

  1. Delete the very old messages and update contacts. At least once a month.
  2. Make folders and put things in them on your pc/laptop. Start with your desktop. Keep minimum icons( I keep only 4) on the desktop.folders
  3. Delete songs and movies you don’t like. Everything is available online and you can always download them later if you need. They take up a lot of space.
  4. Keep backup of your personal documents, photographs etc. both online and in DVDs/ Hard drives.
  5. Declutter your inbox. If you have like 200 unread messages, put them all in a new folder named Archive_date_of_today. Sort them later. Do not keep more than 20 emails in your inbox at a time. Empty the inbox every sunday.
  6. Unsubscribe from online newsletters, promotional offers and other emails you do not read but think you might.

Submit assignments on time

No explanation needed.

Check your progress

At least once a week, check if you  are on track. Are you working towards your goals? Are your actions in accordance with who you want to be in a year or two? Stop wasting time. If you are losing track, get back. Stop the activities that don’t add to your efforts of reaching your goals. It is ok to take breaks but do not procrastinate.

Being tough on yourself makes life go easy on you. A cliche but true. Be tough, be organised, be determined. Aim for excellence. Success will be at your footsteps. Good luck!

Learn to cook

Hey there! The title of this post is self explanatory. Learn to cook. I’m not asking you to become a masterchef overnight but at least learn the basics. Trust me, you will have to, eventually. You can not live on take out food all the time and making instant noodles or breakfast cereal is not an option always.

As a student, many of us leave parental home and live in hostels/dorms on campus. Generally you are provided food there but you eventually get bored of it. The cafeteria food isn’t great either and you never have enough money to buy delicious food outside everyday. Most of you would have experienced this. So what do you do? Do you eat the crappy food? Do you buy potato chips or cheaper street food?

If you are like me, prefer to take the middle route. I take the crappy food and reinvent it. Add more veggies, seasoning, sauce or whatever else you feel like adding and then eat it. It tastes good most of the time but sometimes you just can’t eat it no matter what you add.

Therefore, I learned to cook. There are so many simple recipes out there which are easy and get ready in minutes. You can try smoothies, sandwiches, semi cooked foods, two ingredient desserts etc. which can be learned very easily and the ingredients are readily available. Here is an excellent post which lists a number of exciting ways to get delicious food in dorms!

If you can’t do much, learn these 5 skills at least:

1. How to make a simple sandwich. Did you try ironing your sandwich?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pgPBQpkh60I

2. How to use a knife to chop vegetables(seems easy? I’ve seen people who never touched a knife in their life)

3. How to cook eggs. Omelet, scrambled, boiled whatever you like. Easily available and very nutritious.

4. How to cook ramen. There are very different ways

5. Smoothies and easy drinks(e.g. lemonade)

Below is a list of some student friendly websites which offer super easy recipes that anyone can make. Take your pick and try: