OCD, Nine Years On.

OCD, Nine Years On.

This year will be nine years since I started experiencing Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (and six since I started doing something about it).

I think a lot of people who knew me when I started college are aware of this but I’m choosing to write about it now, nearly a decade on from the first instance of it (during my Junior Cert!), and six since I sought help, as I have a much better perspective of my experience than before.

There are two days in my life that could categorically be dubbed ‘the worst days of my life’.

The first one was when I was 18 on a family holiday in France and the other when I was on a trip to Achill Island in 2013.

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6 Lessons I’ve Learned From My First Office Job

6 Lessons I’ve Learned From My First Office Job

Hello New Graduates

Welcome to the Real World of taxes, graduate programmes, conferences, long client phone calls, and insurance. It’s not a pretty one. In fact, it often gets really, really ugly. Gone are the days where having four classes in a day was a justifiable complaint, when you could skip a lecture every now and then, where you spent all day and all night labouring over an essay like you were giving birth. Now you’re into what they have been complaining about for decades – the dreaded 9-5.

There are many things you won’t miss. The exams, the study, the essays, the meetings with lecturers or speaking out at seminars but the stress and emotions associated with them, they now come in different forms. You will still stress about writing papers, submitting reviews, passing interview questions or questions from your superiors. Deadlines still exist, as do hangovers, correct email etiquette matters now more than ever but it’s not all bad – in fact, you begin to relish evenings, weekends and bank holidays where you don’t have to come home to more work.

Sure, work life can be stressful but at least you’re spared of the constant fear of how your performance will impact your grade nine months down the road.

I’m out of college 18 months now and I’m in my first office job just over four months – I’ve had stints in shops and internships in the meantime – and I think I’ve learned more from being a so-called “professional” than a student. It’s as if college life prepared you for the basics but nothing can prepare you for everything that it contains.

I’ve prepared six lessons I’ve learned from the last few months of full time office work – including my internship – that I would have loved to have known when I graduated. Remember that starting a full time job is the first step on a very long ladder. You can’t see where it ends but you know that taking that step will bring you closer to whatever it is.

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One Year On

One Year On

It hit me today that I am one year out of college. There is a new horde of graduates receiving their results and planning their summer and subsequent future right now, just like I did last June.

As I’ve said countless times before on this blog, your college results aren’t a reflection on how good you are. There’s this myth that floats around that says in order to do well in life, you have to do well in school.

I debunked this wayyyy back 

It’s simply not true. No matter how much tutting you get for not getting a first, or getting a 2:2 or even a fail. School and college structures sometimes don’t suit people, courses are not always examined in the right way, or even some degrees are not what they’re cracked up to be. You could be good with science but the course you chose just wasn’t what you wanted. Examining intelligence in one medium is not indicative of that intelligence.

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Dear Graduates

Dear Graduates

Hey Class of 2017,

In the words of Elle Woods, “we did it!”. Well, you did. I can no longer claim “graduate” status thanks to you guys. But there is a serious congrats in order. You’ve navigated through the jungle that is university and have made it out the other end.

How are you feeling?

Mixed emotions? You may feel excited, relieved, worried, frustrated, scared, all of which are completely valid. This is a time of serious transition and it’s going to be mentally tiring. For the foreseeable future, you will have no more exams, no more assignments, no more lectures and no more incoherent TAs. Just think about that. This is your first time out of full time education for, what, sixteen years?

Yeah, just let that sink in.

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Six Graduate-Life Myths

Six Graduate-Life Myths

We all know them. The things you are told or tell yourself during those final years of college. The things your relatives tell you at family gatherings whilst their dentures protrude from their lips, “once you graduate, you’ll get yourself a good job” or “you can’t work in retail your whole life”.

Or perhaps, they are things that you’ve been telling yourself since arriving at college. Your parents alluding to, often subconsciously, that once you graduate, you have to find a good job that will get you through all the way to your dying days.

I did catch a tweet the other day that kind of summed it up (even though it’s supposed to be in jest).

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Dear 2012 Me

Dear 2012 Me

Dear Sinéad,

Well, how do I put this?

You’ve made it to college and it’s nothing like you think it is. You have all these bright fresh ideas in your head and are preparing to dominate. You’re going to join thirty societies, you’re going to ace The Phil maidens debate, you’re going to pass all your classes and still have a social life and plenty of rest.

You poor thing.

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What I’ve Learned Since Leaving College

What I’ve Learned Since Leaving College

I’m out of university some 9 months now. And in a lot of ways, I feel like I never went. Yeah, I might feel weird walking through campus now and again, but overall, I don’t feel like it’s been a massive culture shock.

I’m somewhat settled now and whilst I am putting into place the skills I learned in college, I don’t miss it all that much.

(there are days when I’d much rather be in the publications office drinking wine and listening to music but I’ve done that a few times now since leaving college)

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Life after college: 10 things that help the transition

Life after college: 10 things that help the transition

It’s not something that is really talked about. I know when I was in university, I saw graduating as the easiest thing ever. I mean, it *appeared* to be fine. You graduate, you get a job, you earn money, you roll around in said money. Easy, right?

As Donald Trump* would say, “WRONG!”

Well, not wrong, but it’s far trickier than that. When you’re in college, that transition between college and the no man’s land of “life after college” is not particularly dealt with.

As I said, you can just assume you will be fine and then push to put it out of your head until your final exam, and then until graduation, but believe me, once those come and pass, you will realise that all the hyped up fantasies in your head were nothing more than that, hyped fantasies.

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10 Ways I Tackle Boredom

10 Ways I Tackle Boredom

It’s something we’re all familiar with. That feeling of staleness, of repeating the motions to the point you can do them in your sleep. It’s not pleasant. And often, we’re sucked into it before we even know it. It’s exactly how I’m feeling at the moment.

I’m in that all too familiar limbo period between getting a job and waiting for it to start. I don’t have the finances to take a short break or to do something different every single day. I get up late, I wander around until I decide to go get a coffee and waste some more time until my rehearsals begin.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m absolutely loving this time off from college and work life, it’s what 21 year old me would have died for, but there are days when I have this little bubble of sadness in my chest at how I have nothing to do.

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Stop Striving For The Perfection You Think Someone Else Has

Stop Striving For The Perfection You Think Someone Else Has

Every now and then, I go through phases of wanting to improve myself, where I take mental clippings of things that inspire me and strive to attain them, or at least copy them to the best of my ability.

I identify who I want to be (at least for the moment) and trawl through Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, to see how it can be done. It’s this weird, heart-in-the-throat kind of feeling. A kind of excitement, a feeling that I am going to be better than ever, that I am going to be the IT girl who can do everything and anything.

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