How to deal with stress during an online semester

Hey my loves,

the entire world is still dealing with this pandemic and while everyone’s life has been influenced by it, one that has influenced me the most is the shift in how my College deals with it. It is now my second semester with just online classes and I don’t know about you, but I find online semesters a lot more stressful. While I do think it is necessary to deal with this pandemic accordingly, and I am for online classes, I do feel like some of the lecturers, as the students, are overwhelmed with the situation and how to deal with it.

But, why?

First of all, a lot of the work lays with us, the students. If the lecturer decides to do an asynchron class, which means no video calls or uploaded video presentation, we have to do a lot of work to show that we do something for this class and did enough to gain the credit points. But even if the class is synchron, which means you have video calls or chats each week at the same time, you have to do a lot more than usually. Or at least, it feels like it. For a lot of students, even me, this means more stress and a lot of planning. And for a lot of students this is hard, because they do not know how to plan everything right.

I currently have nine classes, two are for my electives, which means I have seven classes for my major. I plan on writing two papers and take one oral exam, the rest of the classes I am doing for the credit points. This is a lot for a semester and I know that, but I have reasons for this. I am a semester away from starting my master thesis and I want to give myself enough time and space to do it right, which is why I want to have a pretty full semester now. I could have done it differently, but I personally am pretty organized and have found ways to deal with the stress.

Here’s how to deal with stress during an online semester

Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.

Plan everything out

I personally find it very helpful to have a weekly to do list. I like to write my task for each individual class with deadlines down and add things like home stuff to have an overall view. I also like to assign time slots in my calendar to the individual tasks. I plan the synchron classes and the asynchron classes the same, if I have a time slot free between classes where a asynchron class is assigned I will use this time to take a break but also to start the work for the asynchron class. It’s also a great feeling to tick off the to do list. Sometimes it gets overwhelming to see what you have to do in a week, so I like to make sure to categorize them in order of importance. Under each class I put the thing I definitely have to do and which needs the most time and then move forward to the next thing.

Take breaks

Breaks are very important especially when your doing all the work from home. In between classes I have around thirty minutes that I usually spent snacking, watching YouTube, shake my legs or do something at home that does not involve College work. I also make sure to have a lunch break around the same time every day that way I keep a routine down. For more about my daily routine, check out my blog entry from the other day:

It’s okay to ask for an extension

This is a difficult time and it is a stressful time, which is why a lot of lecturers a willing to give some extra time on your hand-ins and exercises. Just be truthful. It happens to the best of us. Accepting that you cannot do it all is sometimes the only way to accept the stress and deal with it properly. But, if you have a good plan and stick to it, it won’t be often that you will have to ask for more time.

Make sure to eat right

It sounds stupid, right? But, I have found that if you take time out of your day to prepare a whole meal and a healthy one at that it helps with keeping up your stamina. I like to eat at least two times a time a meal with vegetables or fruit. Meals and snacks that are well balanced keep your mind sharp and your energy level highs. Try to avoid highly processed food and too much sugar, I also found that I like to keep my caffeine intake low. If I do drink a coffee I like to keep the number at one.

Set boundaries

It is so easy to just keep working into the late hours, but a good night sleep is very important in stressful times. I personally do not work longer than around 7 pm. Everything over that just keeps me up at night. Sometimes, especially when you have something due, it can be difficult to stick to this timeframe, but for most days of the week I like to make sure that around 7 pm I am closing my laptop.

Do something besides College work

If you have a lot to do it is hard to find time to do something other than your College duties, but it is so important to make some time for family or friends or a hobby. I personally like to go for a walk or meet up with a friend to cook and watch a movie. But, whatever works for you is the best. I would suggest doing something physical, because we do tend to sit for a long time.

What do you like to do in stressful times to calm yourself? Let me know in the comments I would love to know.

I wish you all a wonderful day!

XoXo, Jasmin

How to apply your makeup for an online job interview

Hey my loves,

In today’s blog post I am going to talk a little about how to apply your makeup for an online job interview. In this pandemic everything is happening a little different and that includes the job world a lot. 

A video chat call can easily make you look washed out and pale because of the quality of your webcam. I will give you some tips on how to avoid look pale and instead look glowing, awake and ready to tackle anything.

STEP-BY-STEP TO THE PERFECT MAKEUP LOOK

Step One – Skincare

Skincare is a must for a good makeup look. Stick to products your skin knows and do not try anything new in the week leading up to the interview. Make sure your skin is moisturized and peeled for a glowing finished look.

Step Two – Primer

A good primer helps your skin to protect in from the products you are going to put on your face, but it also helps with the makeup be a lot long-lasting. If you are unsure what kind of primer to use ask your local cosmetic studio to help you out. But, generally speaking if your skin is more on the dry side you should use a moisturizing primer, if your skin is more on the oily side you should use a primer that is mattifying and if your have combination skin use a prima that is water based. 

Step Three – Base

Use a product you already know whether it being a foundation, BB Cream or CC Cream. Make sure to blend down the product on your neck. I would suggest using a product that evens out the skin down but doesn’t look and feel to heavy on your skin. I personally love using the IT Cosmetics CC Creme. 

If you have skin blemishes or acne you can use concealer in your skin tone to conceal them, but I would suggest if the blemish is just raised and not red to not put any concealer on it, because it does draw attention to it rather than away.

Before you apply any other products unless they are cream based, you should set your base with a translucent powder. Focus the product on your t-zone that is where we tend to get the oiliest throughout the day.

Step Four – Blush, Contour and Highlight

To get back some color and dimension back to your face we need to add color, shade and light. To shape your face you need to contour, you can use the three method which ist basically follow the line of a three on the outer part of your face with a contour powder. To get a little warmth and a nice summer glow you can also a a bronzer to the hollows of your cheek.

Use a blush that is not like a hot pink use something that is a little bit more natural. If you do want to use highlighter stay away from glittery products, instead of a shimmery product you could also use a powder that is two to three shades lighter than your skin color.

Step Five – Eyebrows and Eyes

The eyebrows are refereed to as the frame of the face so we cannot forget about them. If you are blessed with full eyebrows use an eyebrow mascara to shape them. If you have sparse eyebrow hair or want to change the form a bit you can use eyebrow powder or an eyebrow pencil, but I would recommend setting this with a clear brow mascara.

When you use eyeshadow stick to natural colors – like brown, rose or golden tones. Make sure that your eyes are lifted and appear to be more awake. For that you need to apply a lighter shadow to the eyelid, a darker shadow in the crease and then blend it. If you want to open up the eyes even more you can always add a shimmery highlight to the inner corner of the eye.

Last but not least, apply a waterproof mascara to your lashes. I always stick to the upper lashes that way they don’t adhere to my lower lashes as much, but do what you prefer.

Step Six – Lipstick and Setting Spray

If you choose to use lipstick make sure that it is not a bold color unless that is your statement color you wear on a daily basis. I would recommend using a lipliner before unless the lipstick is a long-lasting one.

Lastly, you should use Setting Spray to set your makeup in place and to revive it a bit with some freshness. Setting spray makes sure that your makeup lasts all day and doesn’t smudge.

All in all, stick to neutral and warm colors to give your face a natural glow and healthy look. If you want to make sure your eyes pop don’t use a bold color on the lips and vice versa. But most important – YOU DO YOU, whatever feels the most like yourself is completely fine.

If you are unsure if what you created is good enough check-in with your friends or family via a video chat. That way you can check if it looks good or if you need to change it up a little.

I hope you guys enjoyed this little entry.

I wish you a wonderful day!

XoXo, Jasmin.

How to make the most of a cold day

Hey my loves,

Winter means a lot of things – cozy sweaters, time with your loved ones, festive music and so much more. But it’s also the season of cold, rainy and snowy days and sometimes you don’t want to get out on those days, because you rather stay inside.

But what could you do to brighten up those days? Well, let me tell you what I do.

Get into the comfiest clothes. Make some hot tea or cocoa.

Speed Cleaning

The first thing I like to do on those rainy days is to speed clean my apartment. I know, sounds not so fun, but honestly starting your day with a task like this will make you feel like you accomplished something that day. 

Hearty Breakfast or Brunch

After I like to make myself some hot coffee or tea, whatever I fancy that day and most likely will even spend a little more time on my breakfast. I’ve been loving oatmeal with a banana and cinnamon lately, so I will likely make that.

Spending quality time with friends

If I don’t have anything to do for the blog or Uni I like to call up friends and ask if they want to hang out, because let’s be honest watching a movie or cooking food with friends is just so much more fun. I love playing board games with my friends and am currently building an awesome collection of games.

Festive movies or TV shows

I put on a Christmas movie or a show I am currently watching. Recently I’ve been loving Somewhere Between and V Wars, really into both for some reason. Or Virgin River. But, if I am being honest I am just waiting for the next season of You. I freaking love that show. What are some of your favorite TV shows at the moment? Let me know. I’m always intrigued to try something new.

Self Care

If I have put something on I have already seen I most likely paint my nails or do some light brain storming or spend my time on Instagram. At some point or the other I get bored so I will switch up what I am doing, I love reading so I sometimes will read a couple of pages of the book I am reading. But, I also love doing an extended skin care routine. Check out my latest entries: My Skincare Routine and Best Beauty Buys in Winter

Baking and Cooking Comfort Food

I love baking, especially around Christmas time.

I’ve recently started a new thing on my Instagram called Monday Cravings where I share my favorite recipes. Check out my first two IGTVs for some inspiration for some great cookie recipes. @thedawnofinspiration

After baking and cooking I always end up on my couch watching a movie I haven’t yet seen. Sometimes, when I am not in the mood to watch anything, I just love to watch YouTube videos or learn to play the guitar.

What are some of your tips to make the most of a cold day? Let me know in the comments.

I wish you all a wonderful day.

XoXo, Jasmin.

How to survives as a College Freshman

Hey my loves,

I don’t know about you, but I was hella scared back in 2013 when I was a freshman. I didn’t know what to expect or how it turned out, but looking back on it the past few years have been such a great learning curve and all-in-all pretty amazing. I made some lifelong friends on the way which is such a nice bonus.

But, I also could have done a lot of things differently in the beginning. So, I thought it would be nice to tell you what I would do if I were a freshman now. Which honestly I’m kinda am again, since Monday is my first day back into classes as a Masters student.

Socialise + Make friends

Don’t be afraid to talk to new people. They’re all scared just like you are. Meeting new people and making friends is the best way to hold you accountable whether it being doing homework or actually going to class. With a friend it’s always more fun and you feel a lot more motivated.

Pick classes you think are fun

It is so important to also pick classes that you find interesting, you lose focus so much more likely if you’re not interested in the topic and there is nothing worse than having to finish a course that is absolutely boring. So if you have to have such classes in your schedule make sure to also pick ones that you really want to take.

Know where you have to go

I know for myself that my campus is really big and you don’t have every class in the same building which can be very tricky if you don’t know your way around. So make sure you always check out where the rooms/buildings are beforehand and always keep a note in your phone where the class is, trust me if you print it out or write it in your physical calendar you are much more likely to forget those than your phone.

Don’t buy too many supplies

It is highly likely that you only end up using your laptop, a pen and a few highlighters. You won’t need a lot of the stuff you thought you need. I now only buy new printer paper and post-its at the start of each semester, because honestly you don’t need much else.

Attend orientation + learn about the resources your school offers

That’s honestly just a given at this point, I think. You’re starting a new school, possibly one you don’t know much about and possibly without knowing anyone. So make sure you go to orientation. It truly helps with socialising and to clarify any questions you might have. Orientation is also a great way of finding out what resources your school offers, which might be handy in the long run.

Go to your classes

If you go, half the work is already done. Trust me on this. I thought I do not need to go, but it turns out going to your class is not only fun but also half the work. Well, almost. But you also get to see other people and socialise and get to strengthen your character with team work and other in-class activities.

Enjoy your time

It is important to focus on your school work, but it is also important to enjoy your life as a student. If you don’t find a balance between work and life you quickly become overworked and stressed. So find something to do besides College things.

If you have any other tips leave them in the comments so freshman can be as informed as they can be.

I wish you all a wonderful day!

XoXo, Jasmin.

How to write a Bachelor Thesis

Hey my loves,

I did it! I actually wrote a Bachelor thesis and got a good grade on it.

But how did I managed to write my thesis in the first place?

In today’s blog post I am going to tell you my tips and tricks on how to write a good thesis. I will give you a step-by-step guide and even a timeline which you can use to write yours. Maybe you are in a similar situation as I were – working, having courses, maintaining a somewhat social life – or maybe you have no clue how to even start.

The key to everything is PLANNING.

Without a good thoughtful plan you won’t manage to put everything under one hat. You have to have somewhat of a structure or else you lose sense of time and workload. In this blog post however the focus will be on the Bachelor thesis schedule. For that I created a to-do list that you can download, if you want to. It gives you a rough idea about how you should manage your time.

If you want this planner, you can download it as a PDF here.

Finding the right topic and researching for it is the hardest part in my opinion. There are so many options out there and a lot of research, too. So finding the right topic can seem endless. What I like to do is look roughly over the topics we discussed in class, look at the literature we talked about and write down key terms and then just start researching for topic ideas. I also like to have a look at a combinations of topics, so I’ll always look if there is a second book we talked about that I could use, too.

After you find your topic you have to find secondary literature and you need to remind yourself here to NOT go overboard. If you have a topic to which a lot of people have done research filter out the ones who are similar, only use the ones who seem to have an original idea or go further into analyzing than another. Set yourself a limit of secondary literature, I’ll always go by the rule for one page I am writing at least one secondary literature. With 30 or more pages you already have 30 secondary literatures. Also, start organizing them after topics right away or else you’ll lose your overview very quickly.

Finding the right words to start with seems almost every time impossible, so what I like to do is just randomly start with something I had in my mind while reading through all the secondary literature. It gives you a starting point and from then on it should come to you quite naturally, if not, that’s okay, too. We all have a different process of writing. Trust in yourself and trust in what you are capable of.

One last tip: Always plan in two or three more days for each chapter than you think you’ll need. It always comes in handy to have some extra days.

I hope I could give you a good insight into my process and helped you along the way. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.

I wish you all a wonderful day!

XoXo, Jasmin.

Going on a Trip as a College Student

Hey my loves,

in today’s blog post I am going to talk about how I afforded a three day weekend away in Berlin with a friend for under 200 euros.

Now the main key is definitely timing. As a college student you are much more free with your time and not necessarily bound to any of the major travel seasons (at least for us students here in Germany). So, it is definitely always cheaper to travel off season. Another important factor is to set yourself a price limit, we had a price limit of 150 Euros per Person and we stayed in it (excluded is food).

Now we scavenged the internet for any possible offer. We ultimately landed on a page that only offers short trips (kurzurlaub.de). And we found a four star hotel for 70 euros for 2 nights and breakfast for one person, which is an amazing deal. Now, here are my tips to find something similar:

  • Don’t just look at one page for offers, we ultimately looked at four different sites and even Facebook. You could also check out Google, tripadvisor and so on, and of course AirBnB is always an option.
  • Don’t be set on a travel date, in the long run it is much better to be flexible with your dates. The one thing that was important to us was that we would be gone for a weekend and not under the week. But most of the times some of the offers are even better for under the week so if you have the possibility to go under the week I would highly recommend doing so.
  • We traveled with the DB (train), which was at the time the cheapest offer for our time frame once we found a hotel. We could have flown, but even with the cheapest flights we would have had to pay for luggage and that would have been a lot more than what we ultimately paid for our train tickets (we spent about 75 euros for the round trip)

Our total for hotel and train tickets was about a 150 euros for each person and we spend about 50 euros each for food and other things on the trip itself. Our total was almost exactly 200 bucks, which for 3 days in a big city is amazing. Don’t you think?

What are your tips and tricks? Feel free to share them in the comments. I would love to know. Also, next week you get my holiday entry about Berlin, so stay tuned!

I wish you all a wonderful day!

XoXo, Jasmin.

How to avoid Christmas Blues

Hey my loves,

in today’s blog post I am going to talk about how avoid Christmas blues or specifically how I try to avoid it. I feel like Christmas time is such a busy period that you sometimes forget to take care of yourself. I do that a lot even when it is not Christmas, so I always need to remind myself of that.

Take care of yourself

Take time out of your busy schedule even if it is only 30 minutes, but those 30 minutes will make a difference. I like to take this time to take care of my skin or listen to a podcast, but I usually do both. What I also like to do is baking, it is so soothing to me and always takes my mind of everything. Check out my favorite Christmas cookie recipe right here.

Spend quality time with the people you care about

Another thing I like to do to avoid getting the Christmas blues is to make time for my friends and spend quality time with them, which is why it is so important to me that we hold our annual Christmas Dinner. I wrote a little blog post about how to organize a Christmas Dinner Party, which you can check out here. It is so important to spend time with your friends during this time, most of my friends are like family to me, so it’s always extra special.

Watch what you eat & Exercise

Most of the time we don’t necessarily connect our food habits with our mood, but unhealthy foods can actually have a big impact on that. So one tip of mine would be to watch what you are putting into your body. I am not saying you shouldn’t indulge in all the Christmas foods, but I believe that a good balance is important. I also like to stay active during this time, whether it is a workout or just a long walk. 

What do you do to avoid Christmas blues? Tell me in the comments, I would love to know.

I wish you all a wonderful day!

XoXo, Jasmin.

How To Plan A Christmas Dinner Party

Hey my loves,

In today’s blog post I am going to talk about something I like to do every year together with my friends and that is a Christmas Dinner Party. I always host it, because Christmas is one of my favorite times of the year and I love to cook and bake for my friends and I feel like they are looking forward to it as well.

I will give you a little insight into my planning as well as a cute Pinterest board with all cute things regarding a Christmas Dinner Party.

Finding a date

The first thing you will have to do is find a date that works. The past couple of years I created a group text, but this always led to confusion and it took way longer to find a date than it was necessary. So this year, I have decided to do it a little differently. In order to find a date that would work for most of my friends I created a poll with https://doodle.com/. I’ve suggested, I believe it was two dates and then send an e-mail around inviting my friends to the poll. It was super easy this way so that I had a date by the end of the week.

Theme & Food

When everyone answered I then proceeding with writing them individual text messages with the same content: the date, time, place and asking them to bring something to the Dinner for appetizers and desserts. I also told them the theme of the party, which this year will be: AROUND THE GLOBE. We will all create different recipes from all over the world.

Now I have given myself the big part of the dinner the main course and, to be fair, in the beginning I definitely had my problems with finding the right recipe, but after some careful consideration I have decided on a few things (which will I share in a post about the Dinner later this December, because it will be a surprise to my friends). But here are some delicious recipes I have found while researching: Christmas Dinner Party – Recipes

Decoration

Now next stop on the planning to-do list are decorations. While my living room is already decorated for Christmas I am planning on created a few cute décor pieces for the various tables we will be sitting and eating at. I am going to keep it a little low key, since the Dinner part is such a huge part of this part. So I will mainly focus on creating beautiful plated foods, as well as, maybe DIY-ing some flags from all around the globe and creating some cute name pieces and menu cards. Here some of my inspirations: Christmas Dinner Party – Decor

Music

Last but not least, the music! I always create an individual Christmas playlist for the party, and here are my top 5 songs that will most definitely go onto that list this year as well. 

1.      Maria Carey – All I want for Christmas is you

2.      Michael Bublé – It’s Beginning to look a lot like Christmas

3.      Kelly Clarkson – Underneath the Tree

4.      Train – Shake up Christmas

5.      Pentatonix – God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen

What are some of you favorite Christmas songs? Tell me in the comments, I would love to know. Also, be excited about the actual entry about the Christmas Dinner Party. Coming to you soon.

I hope you all have a wonderful day!

XoXo, Jasmin.

How To Save Money As A Student

Hey my loves,

in today’s blog post I am going to talk about how to save money when you are a broke student. Now I am not talking about saving up money for a house or a car or for traveling, what I am talking about is saving money for your everyday life – such as groceries, beauty products, stuff for your apartment or things you need for College.

Groceries 

You can save a lot of money on groceries and you might miss out on some great things. The first thing you have to remember while grocery shopping is “Is this something I want or need?”, because there lies the biggest fail while spending the money at the grocery store. What I like to do is to plan out my meals, but leave some room for things I want to change. I also incorporate weekly deals of my local grocery stores and stock up once a month on items like vegetable cans, frozen veggies and fruit, pasta, rice as well as things like oil, flour and sugar, basically everything that can last you a long time.

Beauty, Fashion & Lifestyle

We all know that shopping is one of the deathliest things to a student, you want all the things and you buy a lot of things that you might not really need. But the truth is, sometimes we need new clothes, new makeup or new furniture. And you can save money – there are especially a lot of student deals. I personally love to use Unidays, they have the best deals for my personal usage, but I also just like to Google for coupon codes, sometimes you find amazing deals. Another thing, which I feel like not a lot of people are aware of a newsletter coupon codes, they are rare, but truly worth it. 

College

Now as a student you probably are spending more money for College than anything else – from student supplies, books for your course to computers and printers. It can get expensive, so you got to be smart about it. As for laptops Apple always offers 10% off for students, which might not seem much, but you pay for quality. As for supplies I always like to go to the dollar store or anything where you can get your supplies for as cheap as possible. For books I like to find used books or change out books with other students that is a great way for you to save money.

Ultimate Guide to Saving

If you like to get more ideas on how to save money head over to Coupon Follow and check out their amazing guide: Ultimate Saving Guide

I hope I could give you an insight on how I like to save money!  What are your tips to save money? Tell me in the comments. 

I wish you all a wonderful day!

XoXo, Jasmin.

How I Deal with Stress – An Honest Answer

Hey my loves,

a couple of weeks ago I talked about how I managed to write three papers simultaneously, as well about my personal development story, so I thought it was about time that I talk about how I deal with stress. This also comes at a time where a lot of things are happening and I am under a lot of stress.

honesty.png

As I am writing this I am laying in my bed dealing with the last bits of my cold that knocked me out an entire week and has put me back with work for college a lot more than I would like. The past three, almost four, weeks haven been stressful on so many levels. About three and a half weeks ago I had a bad fall, which ended with me in a cast on my foot and pain in my arm. My doctor prescribed me rest and I took it, for three days instead of the two weeks he told me to. But I am almost healed now and do not have much pain anymore, so all is good. But that kinda just started a mountain of new stressful things. As college has started again in the beginning of October I found it hard to find a balance between eating right, taking time for myself, working out, as well as maintaining the oversight about the work I have to do for College. So instead of using my new learned tools I tumbled down a path of unhealthy choices and no-time spend for myself which ultimately led to me being irritable, in a bad mood and not taking care of myself enough. The stress level only got higher when I was not able to workout because of my fall.

Well, long story short, PMS kicked also in, harder than it had been the last six months and I was, and for most of the week, I still am a mess full of anxiety attacks and mood swings, but weirdly enough this week of being sick with the cold is turning everything around again. Last week I turned 27 and I had two of my best friends with me and we had the most fun I had in a while. We had a dance session for almost an hour and it just felt so good to feel my body and to exercise, quite frankly. But the day after, I got sick and hit with it hard. But instead of letting myself get dragged down by it even more I decided enough is enough, the moments I feel better I do something for myself. In the past two days, where I have been feeling a lot better, I even had mini dance session of ten minutes for myself. And, let me tell you, how good that felt, even though I was exhausted after it and fell straight asleep.

Now, this post is supposed to be about how I deal with stress, but the truth is: I do not know. Because every time I think I have an answer to it, something new comes up and throws me off-balance. But what I do know is that if you keep a positive attitude a lot of the things might not be as bad as they seem. And sometimes it is okay, not to be okay.

But one thing I want to make sure is that my PMS is not getting as bad next time as it was this time, and in order to do so I have to make sure to put my health, mentally and physically, first again. As soon as I am no longer sick, I will get back into a routine workout situation and as of this week I am trying to figure out a way to incorporate healthy lifestyle and food choices into my busy life again. Basically, I started WW again, just to keep myself motivated to eat healthy and to eat at all. Most of my days I simply forget or am too tired to cook or eat at all, and that’s not a lifestyle I want to live.

So I guess my tip for you would be to take it one step, one day at a time and just realize that you do not have to be on your A-game all the time that it is okay to put yourself, your health and your mental health first.

I hope you all have a wonderful day!

XoXo, Jasmin.