Today I got the amazing opportunity to speak to first year students coming to McMaster about the importance of getting involved. I got a chance to talk about some ways for students to find balance between their academic lives and their social lives, some awesome clubs and societies available at McMaster as well as a lot of volunteer opportunities outside of the campus.
Most importantly, I was extremely thankful to have a chance to talk to students and tell them what I wish someone told me 3 years ago and that is to get out there and make a difference because you can. I was happy to share my volunteering experience with the MS society of Canada as well as being part of SAS at McMaster and the importance of understanding that these opportunities are not just to further ones career, but to grow as individuals and learn more about yourselves and the community around you. There is so much goodness in helping others and making small positive impacts in the world and the only way to do that is get yourself out there and use your strengths and most importantly your weaknesses to make a difference and change not only your life but other peoples lives.
Near the end of my presentation there was a question and answer segment where one girl in the audience asked me how I manage to keep my mental health in check and not get too overwhelmed. To that I answered that question with a question by asking “what does everyone else do?” which is where 90% of the audience said they either watch Netflix all day or just stay in bed. After admitting I used to think that laying in bed all day was the perfect “mental health/me day” I now know how wrong I was. The importance of staying healthy busy is crucial. Go for a walk, go to the gym, read a book, journal, meditate, organize your room – stay productive. The busier you are and the more little accomplishments you make (like organizing your class notes everyday) the more healthy and less stressed your mind will be.
I’d like to thank McMaster University for allowing me share my experiences and giving me a platform in an encouraging environment to speak.
August 27, 2018
If you have not yet had the opportunity to read “The Slight Edge” by Jeff Olson I would highly recommend doing so. The book explains the importance of consistently making (and sticking to) small positive changes and that those small changes will compound into big results. For example, reading 10 pages everyday of an inspiring book or meditating for 10 minutes everyday are both daily habits that will lead to big changes over time.
The one daily habit that I found significantly helped me over the past few months has been daily journalling. I did not realize how much was going on in my own head until I started to write it down. I write down 3 things that I must do by the end of the day (like organize my closet or do 30 minutes of yoga). By writing things down you feel more obligated to do it – kinda like making a promise to yourself. Moreover, journalling has helped me get rid of any negative thoughts I have. If i’m having a bad day or upset about something then I write it down and after I write that negative thought, I make sure to then write 5 positive thoughts. I write down what I am thankful for and recently I started to write what a successful future looks like to me and things I can do to get there.
Life can get very overwhelming and stressful at time and I encourage everyone to partake in daily small positive habits that will make you feel more productive and less stressed. It really is the little things that make the biggest difference.
Thank you for reading and have I hope you have a productive day.
The other day I got an email from the MS Society of Canada saying they have received my application and that they have accepted me to their volunteer Peer Support program. This program allows people diagnosed with MS who have come to a point of accepting their diagnosis in order to help newly diagnosed people. I am over the moon excited about this.
I have been saying this a lot in my recent posts however its because I stand behind it with my entire heart and that is that you CAN make a positive impact on this world. Your voice CAN be used to help and improve the lives of others. However, one can only positively impact the world if they choose to positively impact themselves. I could not and would not apply for the position of helping others accept and find the positives within their disease if i did not find the positives within mine.
There are terrible things that happen to people all over the world on a daily basis and there are so many people that take those terrible things that happen to them and share their stories in the most beautifully inspiring ways. There are people who have survived fatal diseases and horrible accidents, who have lost loved ones or who people who have had all of their freedom taken away and they take their stories and inspire people. They do this to give others hope and exemplify the wonderful power of optimism.
I am so thankful for the opportunity to share my story with others who have MS with the goal of inspiring them to share their story too.
Thank you for reading.
I have always been the person scared to go out of their comfort zone. I get scared that I might say the wrong thing or something uninteresting and no one would listen or care. I always thought my voice did not matter in such a big world.
Recently however, I’ve realized that I could not be more wrong. The most important thing we can do is speak our truth, share our opinions and have a voice. For a long time I thought being diagnosed with MS was going to ruin my life. I could not find a single positive from the card that I was dealt. Until I remembered that I have a voice. I now truly believe I was diagnosed for a reason. I was put on this earth to help people.
I encourage everyone to take their shortcomings and find strength, opportunity and growth in them. Trust me they are there. There are people going through the same thing just waiting to hear your story. Waiting for reassurance that they are not alone and that they too can make positive changes.
Stop letting anything or anyone stop you from sharing your story. Your voice does matter and it can change the world.
Thank you for reading
- When you smile at a stranger they will almost always smile back
- Don’t be so hard on yourself. Life is a process and the most great things do not happen overnight. Keep working hard and you will get to where you want to be.
- Stop for one minute every single day to enjoy the present moment. Whether you are on a beautiful beach or in traffic. There is beauty absolutely everywhere. Appreciate it. (Shoutout to Eckhart Tolle’s Power of Now)
- Love the little things. Sunny days, flowers, fresh air, dogs, birds chirping, a cup of tea.
- Learn to say yes. Say yes to opportunities you’re scared of and take risks. Sometimes the greatest things come out of the most unexpected situations.
- Learn to say no. Do not let others take advantage of your kindness. Stand up for yourself.
- Make your bed. Once you learn to keep your own room/space organized it’ll become a habit surrounding everything else you do. Organization saves lives!!!!
- Love with your whole entire heart! The gift of giving someone all your patience and love is the greatest gift you can give and receive.
- Some people are going to be real meanies. Do not let anyone dull your sparkle. 99% of the time people take out their jealousy by acting rude. Brush it off and move on.
- Your mom is your best friend. That lady would go to hell and back for you. Tell her you love her every single day.
- Exercise for yourself. If your goal in life is to look like Kendall Jenner than do you my friend. However, if you do not care to look a certain way then do it for your mind and soul. Exercise really is free therapy.
- Be thankful for everyday. Every morning that you wake up is a miracle. Many people around the world did not get the chance to see today.
- Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Learn from one another and do not disrespect someone’s view.
- Siblings are really annoying but also the best friends ever. Take time to bond with them and help them in any way you can.
- When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Sometimes life can throw some pretty nasty curve balls at you. Learn to take negative situations and turn them into opportunities to be more thankful, more present, more empathetic and more kind.
- Find your something. Find something that makes your day a little brighter. Whether it’s journaling, going for a walk or reading while having a cup of tea.
- Forgive those who ask for forgiveness and forgive those who don’t. Don’t hold grudges. It is a weight of unnecessary stress on your shoulders. Learn to move on from the negative because trust me, there is a lot more positives.
- Date your best friend. Be with someone who is going to push you out of your comfort zone and loves to watch you succeed. That’s the person you’re going continue to grow with.
- Soak up as much vitamin D as you can! There is nothing better than a warm sunny day. Take every opportunity to get outside and play! Go to the beach, kick a ball around, go for a hike!! Get outside!!
- Dogs are heaven sent. Studies have shown that cuddling a puppy reduces stress in humans. Personally, stress is the major cause of my MS flare ups. About 6 months after I was diagnosed we got a puppy and I have had minimal serious attacks since. I am a full on believer that puppies have the power to save lives.
- Love yourself. You are strong, smart and important and you have the power to achieve anything your heart desires. Never let anyone tell you differently.
Thank you for readingJuly 11, 2018 2:04 pm