Category Archives: Life

September is Self-Improvement Month

This article was previously published on ing Magazine is Michigan State University’s student-run publication covering life, arts, entertainment and more.
For some, September marks the start of a beautiful fall season: crisp air, colorful leaves and new beginnings. For others, the month simply means a return to routine: busy schedules, daily stress and crippling anxiety. But did you know September is also National Self-Improvement Month? It’s a reminder to embrace growth, change and positivity. You’re allowed to be selfish—in fact, it’s encouraged.

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Simple Ways to Unplug and Unwind

Hi everyone! It’s time for another “Simple Ways” post! Life is already hard as it is, so why make things more difficult? Today’s topic: Technology.

Technology addiction: It’s real. In fact, Asian nations, particularly China, extensively research Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD). According to the China Youth Internet Association, about 14 percent of urban youth there have the characteristics of Internet addicts (Mosher, 2011). I first decided to look into this condition after realizing that I couldn’t look in any direction without seeing someone glued to his or her phone. And I’m completely guilty, as well. It’s pretty ironic that I’m writing behind a computer screen, completely withdrawn from the world.

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Tao Te Ching Passage 63

During my freshman year of college, I took a religious studies course. Growing up in a Christian and Jewish household, I was looking forward to learning about many other religions and cultures. One thing I really loved was studying Taoism and reading “Tao Te Ching” by Lao Tzu. The entire book was incredibly uplifting and the photos added to the exquisiteness and simplicity of it. You can check out the version I read here. I tended to agree with a lot of the philosophies in Taoism. This doesn’t mean I didn’t disagree with some, but a great deal of them really opened my mind and inspired new ways of thinking. Many of the passages are still undoubtedly relevant today. I’ve decided to share one with you.

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Simple Ways to Brighten Your Morning

You know the feeling; your alarm clock goes off and that flicker of panic sets in. You have to face another stressful day, and who knows what could happen? You finally drag yourself out of bed, only to be feeling groggy and restless. You lack motivation and just want to snuggle right back under your covers and avoid everyone and everything. I know this feeling all too well, and I figured that it was about time I started making some changes. Not anything too complicated because as an avid night owl, there’s only so much I can handle trying to do in the morning. I’ve decided to share some simple yet effective ways to start your day right.

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Finding Our Butterfly

I was up north over the summer relaxing on the lake, enjoying the sunshine and the slight wind through my curls. As I later passed under a tree, I noticed a caterpillar struggling to form its cocoon. I watched as it swung back and forth, relentlessly spinning in circles. It was so small and didn’t seem very strong.

When I realized that, I discovered something else; that caterpillar was just like me. Sometimes I feel as if I’m not strong enough. Whenever I have a dream to do something, I tend to say “I can’t” or “I’m not good enough”. And I thought to myself that maybe, just maybe, if that caterpillar makes its cocoon, I can accomplish something too, no matter how large or daunting. I can do something incredible.

So, I kept staring at the caterpillar swinging. When I looked a little closer, I started to notice a small, thin casing around it. It was one step closer to a cocoon. It had faith in itself that it could do something. And I think we all should.