Friday, January 31, 2014

Friday Five

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Oh you guys, this week has been a pretty good one. I had two snow (really just ice, but whatevs), days and y'all know what that means….so much time for inter webs shenanigans and Netflix! 
Here are the things I've been loving this week :

1 // Darling Magazine + Soul Pancake Video 
This is real, honest, a bit sad, and so inspirational. I have ben showing it to everyone and it gives me goosebumps every time. If you don't have the time to watch Miss Representation (which you'll see in a sec), watch this. They are made by different people and have a slightly different focus, but overall they're both about knowing your worth comes from something more than your outside appearance and learning to love yourself for who you are, not who you aren't! 

2 // Mitt 
This week had a theme and that was documentaries. When I have time for them, I watch about 7 in a row and I really enjoyed this one. Regardless of your political views, it shows a great inside look into Mitt Romney's life with his family and his campaign in 2008 as well as his presidential campaign in 2012. I found it very interesting. 
3 // Miss Representation 
So, I'm on a huge girl empowerment kick right now and I don't see this phase stopping anytime soon. Helping girls to be confident in themselves, their bodies, and their abilities is something I'm really passionate about and this documentary is amazing. If you like my page on facebook (and you should) you'll know that I've been sharing this and ranting about it like crazy, but it's because I love it so much. It talks about not only the image of women in the media, but also in politics and it is 100% worth the hour and a half. 

4 // Casetagram 
Is this not the cutest, coolest case you've ever seen? I thought so. 
I found this because ViviannaDoesMakeup had it in one of her videos and I am literally fighting the urge to buy this one immediately. I am one of those people who puts lots of thought into their cases and tries to get ones with inspirational sayings or things that make me happy (and match the current season aka plaid in winter), and this one is like all of that rolled in to a perfect little ball. At $34.95 they're pretty well priced and resting the urge to buy it is extremely hard. It's super easy to navigate the site and they link up right to your instagram, facebook, or computer pictures! 

5 // Vampire Weekend - I Stand Corrected 
Y'all, I'm obsessed. The first song I ever heard by Vampire Weekend was Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa (thank you 8tracks) and I listened to it for two weeks straight. I have now found this song and again, obsession. It's awesome, just press play. And if you want more, check out my (super cool) vintage playlist here

What have you been loving this week? 
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P.S. - What do you think of my new "Friday Five" header? Like it or go back to my other neon one?


Thursday, January 30, 2014

My (super cool) Vintage Playlist

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I'm a huge believer in the fact that music today just isn't what it used to be. I absolutely love old music and will listen to it over Top 40 stuff anyday (with the exception of One Direction of course). Old music just makes me feel something that new music doesn't. Somewhere in all the cheesiness and angst and amazing guitar riffs, they nailed something that just isn't around much anymore and I absolutely love it. I love knowing that this is what my parents listened to and picturing myself like I'm living in a John Hughes film with my own personal Blane a la Pretty in Pink. Since you got a glimpse of my dorm yesterday, now you can get a peak at what I'm listening to when I'm hanging out here or driving home on the weekends. You're 100% more likely to catch me listening to Billy Joel or Boston over Beyonce. #sorrynotsorry 
So grab your scrunchie, pop in your headphones, hit shuffle, and be the best Carrie Bradshaw you can be. 

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P.S. - not all of these are "vintage," but they've got a vintage feel to them, so I've counted them in. 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

My Dorm Room

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I figured since it's the end of January and I've been in this dorm room since August, it's about time I share my real life space with you! I've been very fortunate this year to be able to live in a newer, bigger dorm this year, and I really love it. It's smack in the center of campus right between the union and the bookstore and has a connected bathroom, which has greatly improved my dorm experience! 
This is my closet! I have a chest of drawers this year, which you'll see later, but that gives me so much more room in here! I have a divider in so I can hang my shorts and skirts separately (which is a huge space saver). At the top I have a small shelf so I store my towels and blankets there (and my yoga mat because I'm just so sporty #neverbeenused), saving space in my drawers, which is where I kept them last year. My favorite thing about my closet divider is all the cheeky things it can hide, shhh! 
I have a love hate relationship with my desk. It comes in two parts and I used one as a night stand since it wouldn't fit in this little nook by the window. It is constantly becoming cluttered which distracts me, so I try to clean it off at least once a week, which makes me much more productive! Stacking = wonderful. I stack my pens and notepads on top of my agenda and push all the small things like my candles and germ X to the very back! Biggest tip? Get a lamp…with a shade. My florescent lamp that shined right in my face last year about killed me. Btw, my dad totally got me that Queen paperweight when I moved in last  year…is that not the cutest? 
As I'm sure you've heard, storage and space management can be a bit of a problem in a dorm. To solve this a bit, I've stashed everything under my bed! Last year, I lofted my bed and had my desk under there, but I like this way much better. I have my fridge, drawers, food box (snacks and groceries), medicine/first aid box, extra pillow, weekender, and laundry stashed under there. It's nice to stack textbooks on top of my fridge and my drawers as it saves space on my desk but is easy to reach! 
My other snacks as well as study supplies are kept in those drawers on my window sill. I keep pencil cases and notecards in some drawers and then in others I have snacks, granola bars, and crystal lift packages. The drawers are also great to put my TV on. It's the perfect height to watch from my bed! I also keep my (illegal) candles and toaster on my window sill and my absolute favorite part is that when I need to, I can pull the curtain and hide all of it! 
Oh, my bathroom. So, a few months ago when I originally planned to post this, I cleaned so you guys could see my vanity and sink area. I took a super clean pic showing all the things I used to have up there, but as you can see on the right, products have taken over. At least we've got lots of space, right?? 
My bed! This is my favorite part of my whole room. I love how I have it situated and decorated this year and how it's tucked away in a corner so you can't see me when you first come in the door! The letters are hand painted that I got from my big and the canvas above my bed was a DIY project using my sorority colors and motto. My pictures are hanging on my "owl line," yet another sorority reference of course! I really tried to incorporate loads of pictures and things from home as I got really home sick and went home lots last year, and am trying to do that less now (to prepare for England, as that'll be major homesickness)! 
So this is my makeshift nightstand! It holds my cork board, my air cleaner/noise maker, and odds and ends like paper towels, plates and silverware, ziplocs, and other things! It has drawers on one side so I just face that away from my bed and it comes in very handy for storing stuff! My favorite part, again, is my cork board because of all my pictures, keepsakes, and quotes! Gotta love Machiavelli! (; 
If you want to see what my cork board at home looks like (it's much cooler), click here
Last of all, my bathroom. It's pretty standard and simple with a shower and toilet. My roommate and I used a shower caddy to save space and I really like it…and yes, we've filled that up as well. #producttakeover 
Overall best tips? 
Utilize your space in the best way possible. Buy shelves that stack vertically, not horizontally. Fold your clothes so more fits in the drawer. Use things for multiple purposes, not just to old one specific thing. 
Personalize your room with things from home and things from college. Command strips are your best friends. Get lots of photos printed and just paste them everywhere, in frames or on cork boards. Get a canvas and paint something on it. Make it yours. 
Clean. I know, no one likes it, but clutter will absolutely KILL your study habits. You can't focus when there are snack wrappers and a million pens everywhere on your desk and you especially can't focus when your room smells of month old food. #horrid #guilty 

What are your dorm room tips/experiences?   photo sarah-sig_zps54eac73d.jpg


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Sylvia Plath Appreciation Post

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So yes, I realize that Sylvia Plath killed herself by sticking her head in her oven. I realize that she was an amazingly talented person who had some very deep, troubling issues (as in she isn't the best to look to for life advice), I get it, but I also feel that some of the things she said describe me better than any other quote I've ever heard/read before, and I'm always going to appreciate that. 
When I was in high school, I read The Bell Jar because it was on my AP reading list and it was the kind of book that is so well loved the pages smell like an old library and the cover feels silky smooth. I knew right when I picked it up that I was going to love it and it didn't disappoint. I'll just throw it out there that yes, it can move a bit slow and lead you to wonder "Where is this going?" and yes, it can be a bit (actually quite a lot) depressing, but in the end, once you've sat and thought about it a bit and really put it into perspective, you'll come to love it, I promise. 
I often say it's the girl version of Catcher in the Rye as Esther is just lost, unhappy, and very depressed…reminiscent to me of Holden Caulfield.  
Back to the main reason I've written these posts - Sylvia Plath quotes. I stumbled across a few on tumblr and then just kept searching for more. I absolutely love them. She said and wrote such relatable things that are so simple but feel so profound. I think she said things that at the time, and still now today, people are afraid to admit and say out loud, and I love her for it. 

I am gone quite mad with the knowledge of accepting the overwhelming number of things I can never know, places I can never go, and people I can never be.

I do not think this could describe my current state any better. It drives me nuts all the places I will never see and experience, all the books I'll never read and all the cool facts I'll never know. The people I can never be is the breaking point for me though. People always tell you that you can be anything you want, but sometimes, that just isn't true. And then there comes times when I want to be so many things and can't possible be (an archaeologist, marine biologist, world traveler/hippie, and political strategist) all at once. I guess it's just a fact of life, but it really, really, bothers me. 
What horrifies me most is the idea of being useless: well-educated, brilliantly promising, and fading out into an indifferent middle age.
This is an ever present fear of mine that I could never put into words before this. I am so afraid of being so smart and good at something and having so much promise and never becoming anyone or making any difference. More than anything else, I don't want to be indifferent or unimportant. 
Why can’t I try on different lives, like dresses, to see which one fits me and is most becoming?
I think at some point everyone has felt like this. Why can't we just know how our life will turn out if we make one decision as opposed to another? Why can't we just know that we'll be happy and not regret choosing something else at the very moment we're at now? 
Please don’t expect me to always be good and kind and loving. There are times when I will be cold and thoughtless and hard to understand.
This is me. 100%, I could not have summed it up better, absolutely love it. My family picks a lot because I am very weird about emotional things and don't really like physical affection, but really, I just have days where it works for me and some where it doesn't. Sometimes, I am the kindest person who will go out of her way for even the strangest of strangers, and sometimes I am cold for no apparent reason and I can do things that hurt people without even real trying and I don't even understand it myself. We are taught that as women we must always be rays of sunshine who are always gracious and kind and loving and so sweet, but sometimes I'm just not. And it's not a sin or a defining characteristic of my personality, it is just a part of me that is what it is, and it's okay. 

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Monday, January 27, 2014

Week in my Life #7 1/2

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Ahh, this week has been so much better than the past two! I am finally back into a routine and it's been wonderful. I've being doing lots of cool things and hanging out with my friends at school and I'm so grateful that I've finally gotten out of my little sad anxious phase. You ever have that feeling when you just feel like you're in the right place doing the right things and you're exactly who you want to be? That's where I'm at for now and I'm loving it. 

This picture is from my Lush bath before I left for school and omg, it was amazing. Golden Wonder is my favorite bath bomb so far and it made my skin so smooth! Taking a bath is such a calming little treat for me since I've only got a shower at school (communal tubs, ew) and this bath bomb made it perfect. It turns your water into the loveliest shade of turquoise and smells very citrusy and fresh! 
These are a few random shots from the past two weeks as I jipped you guys on a WIML post last week. I asked for a white car monogram for Christmas and my poor dad tried so hard but accidentally ordered it in gold. He felt so bad about it, but I found supper cute place to put it…above my bed! I'm actually quite obsessed with it. // My super cute breakfast between classes one day..chocolate chip muffin and coke! // My conversation with my mum that made me crack up! // Favorite purchase of the month practically…colored pens to write in my agenda! #organizationplease 
So living in the South we don't get very much cold weather and especially no snow. On Friday though, we got lots of sleet and ice…leading to us having the day off school and a faux sneaux day (that's how we spell things here)! I started the day all warm in bed with whole grain waffles and cane syrup watching Sherlock then explored a bit was marvelous! 

Oh baby. On Saturday my sorority had initiation and I went to this burger place for lunch that was totally amazing. It's one of those fad places where everyone goes, but they had a seasonal king cake shake that I just had tot ry, so I caved. The meal was $18, but the burger was really good a la bacon, cheese, and honey mustard, and the king cake (special mardi gras cake with cinnamon) shake was sooo good. 
this picture is awkwardly small due to its bad quality, but you can see it in all it's glory here
 On Saturday night, Katie, Hannah, and I went to a Mardi Gras ball in the town where I'm from. I love going to Mardi Gras balls and it was fun to go to one where I'm not the princess and have no responsibilities! The girl in the middle of Hannah and I is Chelsea who was my Junior Miss when I was Miss Scott. It's all a bit complicated for those of you not from here, but it was a blast! The tables were all decorated differently to go with the theme masquerade and it was so much fun! 

As usual, Sunday was spent with family and driving back to school. It was such a refreshing breather and I'm ready to tackle this week and all I have coming up! 

How was your weekend? How you been getting snow where you are?

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Friday, January 24, 2014

Friday Five

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Wow, this week has been a bit of a crazy one. I'm just starting to settle into this semester's routine, but none of my books have arrived so I am stuck with all this free time I know I won't have next week (totally not complaining, I just wish I could get a head start). I totally jipped you guys and didn't post a "Week in the Life" on Monday, but I'm going to add the highlights to next week's update. As far as anxiety and stress goes, after sitting down and coming up with a few solid ways to handle anxiety, I feel like I've gotten a much better hold on it for the time being! Anyways, these are the things I've found so amazing this week, enjoy! 

1// Amy's post on Sonder 
Literally everything Amy does is cool. Sometimes she posts things and I'm just like, HOW ARE YOU SO COOL AND AWESOME? When I read this post it mediately hit home with me and I literally book marked it to show everyone. When I was little I used to sit on the play ground and watch all the cars go by and wonder what people were doing and make up little lives for them. It always amazed me how many people there were in the world and how they each have their own little life that is just like mine but completely different as well. It still amazes me to this day that across the globe people are waking up every morning and doing the same things I do, but in such far away places and wow, it's overwhelming. I highly recommend you go check it out! 
photo taken from Amy's linked post
2// Gold Foil Prints
So as you guys know, for no particular reason, my life has been a bit wobbly lately. I am generally a very happy go lucky person who doesn't dwell on little things, but as of late it's been a bit harder than usual and I've need some serious inspiration. I love quotes and I love gold…enter gold foil prints. I really love this one, but as one print is $22, I may just customize some on Etsy and put them in my room at home! 

3// Keep Calm and Blog On
Oh you guys, I have stumbled upon yet another bloggy soulmate. Her blog is pink, and girly, and dainty, and perfect…she is obsessed with anything and everything British…and she has traveled to all of my favorite places. I am just in total, full on crush mode right now. I can't even…

4// Whistle and a Light 
This is the song on the Miranda Kerr Shop Style commercial and I just love it. It's very lively and upbeat which I think is perfect for these dull winter days. 

5// TSM Article
This article is called "Quit Crying Rape" and is obviously about a controversial and touchy subject, but I really enjoyed reading it. I think our culture has definitely made it okay for a girl to regret her decision and claim that she was raped and then the man in the situation is immediately given no chance to explain or plead his case. We are so accustomed to automatically assuming that girls are victims while men are predators and see it as so open and shut, but sometimes the fault can be split evenly down the middle. Girls who claim rape when in actuality they just made a bad choice royally screw up the girls who are actually forced against their will and/or are violently attacked by making light of a situation and turning something very serious into a way to cover their tracks. 

What have you been loving this week? 
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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Getting to know Sarah Smile Pt. 2!

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So this first installment of this little thing happened because I was a bit bummed and what's better at cheering you up than making your friends answer questions about you? Practically nothing. Every time I get an email back from one of my friends I just die laughing, so I thought I'd share another set with you! It's so cool for me to see all the different parts of my personality that come out with different people, so this time it's my bezzie Katie and my roommate Victoria. One lives with me and the other practically does, so I guess they know me pretty well. (;

Katie and I have known each other since senior year. We originally became friends because I liked her neighbor, but I'm so glad that brought us together because we're working on year 3! Katie is my forever Valentine and Mardi Gras Ball date and is always there for the rough times because she is so much better at handling emotions than me. 
How did we meet?
·      I’m not exactly sure how we met but I do remember that we bonded over a certain neighbor of mine who shall not be named (that is definitely a Harry Potter reference by the way).

How long have you known me?
·      I’ve known you for three years.

What is my best quality?
·      I think your best quality is that you are very confident in who you are and anyone who meets you can see that.

What's the funniest memory we have together?
·      Prom Night… enough said.

If you had to describe me in 3 words, what would they be?
·      confident, clever, classy the three C’s

What is my favorite thing to do?
·      Shop…even at the expense of your wallet.

What is my least favorite thing?
·      Try new foods

Do I have any weird quirks?
·      This is the weirdest thing I have ever seen someone have an issue with, but you don’t like to look at cold meat…I had to heat up your food for you because you were gagging and saying that you probably couldn’t eat it because you saw it cold. And I just want to clarify it was cooked cold meat. It didn’t even look like it had been alive and kicking a couple hours ago. I just don’t understand.
(I just don't like to touch or look at cold meat, okay? Especially if the gravy turns all jelly-ish…yuck)

Who is my favorite person in the world?
·      Harry Styles
So Victoria is my roommate in my dorm this year! We had a bit of a rough start because my OCD self asked her to change sides of the room so I could have her side due to the better fung shui (yes, I am that strange), but I'm so glad she was understanding and didn't think I was a totally creep because we get along so well now! She has also coined the phrase "Do it for the blog" which is what we say when I do something stupid or crazy just for this little bloggy blog. Her boyfriend Dalton is also hilarious and I've become like their child - nice way to say constant third wheel - and I'm so glad they allow me to go on adventures with them! 
How did we meet?
We met in our dorm room one night before I headed to IHOP! 

How long have you known me?
I have known you for about 4 months now. It's felt longer though!

What is my best quality?
Your best quality is your ability to always look good for class. I usually go to class with a messy ponytail and makeup, but you seem to always look fabulous just in case you ever cross paths with Harry.

What is my worst quality?
Your worst quality is your lack of resistance when looking at J Crew online. Your wallet should learn to flee and hide when that happens.

What's the funniest memory we have together?
Funniest memory? That's a hard one. I'm sure it involves Dalton somehow. Or maybe it was us complaining about a confiscated lamp.

If you had to describe me in 3 words, what would they be?
3 words? Stylin, smilin and sassy (the good kind of sassy though)

What is my favorite thing to do?
Your favorite thing to do is anything that involves Harry Styles, online shopping, or watching YouTube bloggers with accents

What is my least favorite thing?
Your least favorite thing is when our suitemates take hour long showers.

Do I have any weird quirks?
Weird quirks? Hmm... Not really.  Something that amazes me though is you never get tired of Fruit loops. If I were you, my taste buds would eventually stop tasting them!

Who is my favorite person in the world?
Favorite person in the world is me of course... Just kidding. It's either Harry Styles or (insert oatmeal sweater wearing blonde here)

Any extra info that you think is important?
Extra info about Sarah: The way to her heart is through a bag of fruit loops. She is always up for a Walmart or Target adventure. She is almost always smiling or laughing. You will see her name on lawn pick cardboards one day when she runs for something with politics. 

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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Room Tour Part 2!

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A bit ago I decided doing little sneak peaks into my room at home would not only be a neat idea for a post but would also force me to clean my room. However, it would seem that I have circumvented that yet again as I've chosen to do my bulletin board next! (;
If you didn't see my first post where I showed you my vanity and told you about my inspiration for it, go check it out…after you read this post of course! 
I started this bulletin board sometime in middle school. Someone gave it to me as a present and I'm so glad the they did! Every time I get a pretty sticker, a cute card, or any little thing really, I find a place to pin in on the board. Honestly, it's gotten quite full and after taking these pictures and remembering how much I love all my little keepsakes, I've decided to get another board. There are so many things on there now that I can't share all of them with you, but I'll share a few of my favorites! 

 In the bottom right corner I have the stamp from a Christmas present from my mum because it came from London and then the Union Jack flag print that came in the box with my tangle teaser. Every time I see these little tidbits I think of England, all the hard work I'm putting into getting there, and how amazing it will be once I'm finally there. #cantwait
You can also see the corner of a birthday card I got from my family because when I was younger I went to sleep very early and they used to tell me to put my teeth by the sink…as in false teeth..hence the card. 
Starting at the top left, I have my page pin from working at the capitol over the summer, another cute birthday card, my name tag from sorority rush, an LSU flag from orientation, my Winter Conference name tag (I swear, a post on this is coming soon!!), my number 7 tag from when I tried out for color guard freshman year, and yes, that's a Jonas Brothers poster in the background..I guess I've always had a thing for rockstars. 

 Yep, right in the center is another name tag from a program I interviewed for before I started at LSU. I have my card that came with my Tory Burch boots, because, I mean, I must keep every memento from those babies. I have a ticket from a Taylor Swift concert I didn't even go to just because I found it and she performed on my birthday, so I thought it was special. In the middle, that green card is a thing from middle school that belonged to my crush at the time. On St. Patrick's Day, the boys got these cards and you had to do things for them to get it (like carry their books, etc…btw the girls got cards on Valentine's Day) and at the end of the day, the girl with the most cards got a prize. I got this kid's two years in a row I think so I guess it was pretty important to me at the time! 
 On this particular pin, I have a little card a girl wrote for me in my sophomore year of high school. It was so sweet of her and she wrote once for everyone in the class - so lovely! I also have a fortune that says "People rise to your expectations." I got this in a cookie sometime in my sophomore year and boy, did it revolutionize my way of thinking! 
 Oh, every time I see these it makes me smile and love my mumma even more! These were attached to balloons on my 14th and 15th birthdays! I felt so special because she brought it to school for me with some candy. It was such a neat treat and those cards made it even better…and yes that says from my future Jonas in-laws. 
 I cut a page out of Seventeen a while back because I loved the little tips they gave about confidence and I'm a huge believer in "fake it til you make it." I also have yet another birthday card from my grandparents and my schedule from freshman year!  
These are the hand written birthday cards that you saw in the first picture. It's a tradition that me and my sisters always write each other hand written birthday cards and I'm so glad that I've saved these. Apparently Mal was in the hospital for one of my birthdays and she drew a nice little picture of what we'd do when she got it. She also wrote a lovely little note about not letting people get you down because they can only make you feel as small as you let them, and I'm so glad to have that to look back on now! Hannah's card is the one on the left! 
This is what my board looks like with everything pinned on it! I also have little things like my wristband from the huge watermark called Schlitterbaun and my schedule from 8th grade! That Mardi Gras mask hangs in the corner because not only does it give the room a bit of color, but it reminds me of a little piece of who I am since I'm been involved in so much Mardi Gras stuff since I was very little! 
It looks a bit like an episode of hoarders, but all these little things bring me back to certain places in my life and I just love looking back sometimes. I also keep a container of practically all my notes since middle school and I've appointed myself the keeper of all the old pictures of my mum and dad since they're divorced now, but while some of those things make me a bit sad, my bulletin board is full of all the happy stuff! This has been building up since middle school (about 8 years in the making) and while I can laugh at how much I've changed since some of these things were pinned, I can also reminisce about all the things that have stayed the same. I can't wait to start another one and keep collecting little memories for the next ten years to come!

What's your favorite little keepsake that you've kept through the years?  
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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Anxiety: 7 Tips and Tricks

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Last week was a bit of a rough one for me. I don't know if it was school starting or just the realization of yet another year starting and so much ahead of me, but it just wasn't great. I'm still a bit stuck in this stressed, unhappy bubble and I'm not quite sure how to move on from it. There are so many things that I want to do, but so many things that need to get done and all of it's causing a lot of anxiety and pressure right now. 
My biggest causes of anxiety are driving, failing or not meeting expectations, leaving for a trip, not having control or a plan for the future, too many people in one place (especially if I don't know them), and being in a rush, especially when I'm running late. I tend to start feeling all the blood rush to my head and my face gets hot and I can't focus and my heart starts pounding and I feel like I could cry, which makes it worse because I hate crying. 
I start feeling like there is no way I can do everything that needs to be done or I can't see a way to get to XYZ from/with ABC and it feels a bit like drowning in quick sand because the more you struggle the more you sink. 
In this generation, I feel like anxiety is something so many people struggle with. I think that it has a lot to do with technology and nothing being quite so simple anymore, but I thought I'd share a few things that help me when I start feeling anxious and weighted down and maybe they can help a few other people who struggle with it. 

1. Breathe
This sounds so cliche and dumb, but when you actually close your eyes, take a big deep breath, and slowly let it go, it can actually really clear your mind for a second and slow you down a bit. When my heart is racing, I can't focus on anything and I feel so fidgety. Taking a deep breath helps me re-focus and calm down. This usually helps me when I'm dealing with minor things like rushing to finish school work or running late in traffic. 
2. Stop/ Pull Over/ Take a Minute
I get anxiety when I'm driving fairly often and just knowing that I can stop, pull over, and wait until I'm ready is so comforting. Most of the time I tell myself that I'm being silly and there's no reason to stop, but being able to take that moment to refocus and calm down a bit definitely helps. I find that when I'm with people I don't feel like I can stop what I'm doing and don't want to freak them out, but in most cases people don't mind taking a minor break or waiting to do things until you feel a bit better. If you're worried and anxious the whole time it won't be any fun anyway, so it's best to wait a bit and go when you're ready. I do this a lot when it comes to nights out because if I go when I'm very anxious about it I will literally be wanting to leave and freaking out before I even get there. 
3. Chew Gum
Again, this sounds silly, but I tend to bite my nails or grind my teeth when I get anxious and chewing gum stops me from doing that, because when I start that my anxiety usually gets worse. Chewing my nails for some reason also speeds up my heart rate, which makes me feel more nervous and anxious, so just like a deep breath, chewing gum stops me from doing that and helps me slow down.
4. Listen to Music 
When I'm walking to class or hanging out in the student union and I start feeling anxiety coming on, I instantly find my headphones and drown everything else out. I have a special playlist especially for this and if it gets really bad I even lean back and close my eyes like a weirdo, but sometimes just tuning things out and focusing on something simple like a YouTube video helps. 
5. Take Some Time to be by Yourself 
Sometimes, I just need silence and calm. I don't want to explain and rationalize things to people. I often sit in my bed under my covers and close my eyes and just sit there. I don't sleep, I just quit everything for a minute and let my mind wander. I block out any outside noises with my noise maker and for me it's a bit like meditation. No interruptions and all the time in the world. 
6. Write it Down
You know how people say "If all the things you have to do are keeping you up at night, write them down"? They were on to something good. Half of my anxiety comes from feeling all these things swirling in my head and having no control over them. Writing them down gives me some control back. I can now visually see what needs to be and often times is it less than I imagined. For those times that it's not, I also write a detailed plan/timeline. Planning to me means control, which greatly reduces my anxiety. 
7. Call your mom
Well, it doesn't have to be your mom I guess. It could be your dad or your best friend…but call someone. I generally call my mom or Katie and just say "Please distract me, I don't feel okay" and they are really good about not making me feel silly or belittling what I'm worrying over. They help me to refocus, slow down, and put things into perspective, which helps about 80% of the time. 

When it comes to panic attacks, I can only recall about 4 or 5 since high school, but for the most part, stopping, breathing, refocusing, and distracting my mind tend to help me with those as well. My biggest piece of advice would just be to surround yourself with people who understand and don't push you to do things you don't feel like you can do. Sometimes I really like to go out and sometimes it absolutely makes me want to burst in to tears and hide from everyone…and my friends get that and don't bug me to go out with them or make me feel uncomfortable about feeling that way. That is probably the single most helpful thing with my anxiety. 
All in all, just don't be embarrassed about it. That makes things 10 times worse and isn't helpful. Tell people if you need them to leave you alone for a bit or if you can't do something, don't expect them to just know. Everyone has their own separate, unique issues and you don't have to apologize or feel uncomfortable about them. 

Do you have issues with panic attacks or anxiety and have any helpful tips on handling it? 
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