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Jess G

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Jess G last won the day on April 14

Jess G had the most liked content!

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  1. Feeling Conflicted

    Thanks for your thoughtful response and kind words. For the record, I did feel tons better today. In retrospect I think it's something not unlike the rage you can get from being "hangry", but instead of resenting whatever meeting, class, or accident of logistics that is separating me from much-needed calories, I could only direct that frustration at the fact that my draft didn't exist yet and by extension myself for not having done it. It helps to be able to remind myself that this is A Thing(TM) that human brains do. I would be more surprised if my brain wasn't unhappy with me for subjecting it to stress and sleep deprivation.
  2. Feeling Conflicted

    The main question here is, how does the way you think about self-care change (if at all) when you feel like you've fallen off the wagon? Long winded version: I'm going to level with you guys here--I didn't do a great job with self-care this week. For a number of reasons, I had a pretty rough week and didn't get ahead on work like I had planned... and realized too late that I needed to draft a research paper by Friday afternoon. Nothing for it but to work through Thursday night. It's something we're culturally told (in the US, anyway) is something that college students do. We know it's not a good thing to do. Sleep is important. Health is important--ostensibly mores than grades in college. But an 18-22 year old in reasonably good health can recover more quickly from a night of lost sleep than a late assignment. So here we are. I'll admit I'm feeling odd and conflicted about my all-nighter. I haven't done that before. I don't know exactly what I expected, but I thought I'd share a few observations: It was easier than I'd thought to stay awake. A bit of coffee, a 2 AM shower, and two 90-minute naps got me through. I thought that would be the hard part, but it wasn't. I got hungry. I suppose it makes sense, being active much longer than usual, but I hadn't expected that. Lucky I had some healthy food in my room so the urge to stuff myself with the nearest junk food wasn't a problem. Controlling your environment really does help. I live in a single room, so I was able to keep the lights on and pace as necessary without disturbing anyone. Napped in my clothes so I wouldn't mentally transition to "night mode". It went fairly well until about 4 AM. That was when I really started hitting the wall, and as my body wore out, my mind also became less disciplined: there was less coherent thought about folk music of the Cold War and more "you're never going to finish this. Why are you doing this? This was a bad idea. You don't belong here. This isn't going to work. You need sleep. You can't write like this..." It was very, very hard to get out of that rabbit hole. By midmorning today, I felt... better? I was more or less fully functional today, which was unexpected. I'm slowing down now, just waiting for something that resembles my normal quittin' time so I can get back on a schedule. Helps that I got to ride a horse this afternoon. Don't know if it was the moderate exercise or the animals themselves, but I felt sooooo much better after the ride. So I guess in the end everything turned out... okay? I finished my draft. It wasn't anything spectacular, will need plenty of revision in the coming weeks. But it was done. Still, I can't shake the feeling that staying up like that was a mistake. I didn't like the person I was at 4 AM. The exhaustion dredged up pretty much every fear and doubt I had in the back of my head and wouldn't go away. So long story short, I accomplished my goal, but I compromised... something... doing it. Not sure what yet. Plan for the weekend: equalize. Reestablish routine. Maybe get ahead, because I don't want to do this again. I'm no stranger to little sleep, but this felt different. Curious to know any of your thoughts, if this is something y'all have dealt with before.
  3. Green Grass (Focused.af Discussion)

    First of all, that drawing is amazing. I'm definitely in the "work things through rather than starting from scratch" camp. Starting over seems like it would be easier, because the early stages generally tend to be. With a blank slate, you have so many options open, so if one doesn't work it doesn't feel like a big deal. But as a project takes shape, your options for progress narrow. It gets harder because you have a better idea of what you want Your Thing to be, and you feel compelled to work through issues rather than find an easier solution. That's a good thing. It means your project is starting to exist. Whenever I feel like scrapping something, I remind myself that the same issues will crop up with the new project. It's just a part of making something--something I can be proud of, anyway. So then it becomes a question of whether I actually like the new idea enough to take the time necessary to start from scratch. Otherwise, stay the course. PS: got distracted five times while writing this just looking at your comic. Looks like you've got a fantastic sense of humor!
  4. Web Development Stuff

    I was reading this topic this afternoon and it reminded me of a computer science problem I had been stuck on (nothing fancy, beginner JavaScript stuff). I got to thinking about a particular bit of code and how only one part of it was broken. One stroke of inspiration and quick jaunt to the computer lab later, and what do you know? The code works. Thanks for the unintentional inspiration!
  5. Self-Care Through Weariness

    So I know the title sounds pretty contradictory--we generally think of self-care as something that decreases fatigue, not as a cause of it. Exhaustion is bad. We're afraid of running out of steam, of burning out. But stay with me here, and let me know if there's something to this or if it's just the tiredness talking. If you haven't gathered, I am tired.af right now. But for one of the best possible reasons. Horseback riding is something that makes me stupidly, unreasonably happy. I started when I was tiny, and have been riding for nearly a decade and a half now. A ride--even a really difficult one--can drag my mood from "depths of stress arghhhhh" to "that just okay joke is comedy gold right now because I'm just so happy" in the space of an hour. This morning, I left my college campus at 4 AM to travel to a competition a state away, stood around in freezing weather until mid-afternoon, rode for 5 minutes, stood around some more, finally made it to a hotel, did some homework, and now await another early morning (followed by another long drive back to school). The way these horse shows work is a lot of people do basically the same thing one after the other, and then the judge decides who did it best. Think of it like dance, but if everyone had to do the same routine. That means the day is very long, repetitive, and difficult to explain to visiting family members. ("No, did you see that rider's leg slip around the turn? That was what confused the horse, so he didn't have a very good jump. ...I know he didn't knock it over, he didn't have to, it's about form and posture and stuff....") All of this might sound like a rough day--and it is! It's a very demanding operation, and it carries the risk that tiny, tiny mistakes can knock you out of the ribbons--we're talking one foot moves one inch in a direction it's not supposed to go, and you've ruined the round kind of mistakes. It's tiring, sometimes it's frustrating. I'm soooo tired... but with the same floaty, unspoilable good mood that I always get from working with horses. It's a good tired. It's a fulfilling tired. I suppose it helps that I did well in my class today, but I've found that the feeling is still there even if I don't. I still spent the day hanging out with my teammates, in an environment saturated with the thing we all love. Maybe there's something to that. Tired is good, as long as there is a reason for it. Rest is important, but even more satisfying when it feels earned. You have to want the tired. With that, I have to be awake again soon, for another day at the shows (and tons of responsibility when I get back to campus). So good night, and let's make exhaustion afraid of us.
  6. Hi, Call Me Jess!

    Hello there! I've been floating around the edges of the SCS community for a few months now, so I guess I'm overdue for a proper introduction. I'm currently a college student (history is my jam). When I'm not holed up studying, I'm probably playing the violin or stealing time out at the barn with the equestrian team. Ask me about ponies! I love a good story--books, film, and more recently audio drama (thanks, Wolf!). I'm in the process of moving away from "mental health via brute force". I say from experience: yes, you can actually convince yourself that you aren't tired/angry/stressed right now through sheer force of will; no, it's not a very good idea to do so. Looking forward to getting to know you folks better!