Rotten to the core

Have you ever eaten an apple that looked perfectly fine on the outside, but to your disgust, was rotten on the inside? You couldn’t have known though, right? Even the apple’s flesh tasted fine – In fact in addition to the red and shiny exterior, the interior was deliciously juicy! In fact, only when you got to the core the apple was rotted and black.

Unfortunately our lives are filled with so many people like these rotten apples. They are so good at making themselves look beautiful on the outside – waxed and buffed to trick you in to biting in to them. They charm you with their perfectly crafted smiles, and know exactly what to say to get you to believe that they are on your side. They continue to be nice to you until you become disposable. Then they will stop making the effort and stick a knife in your back the moment you turn around.

That is just how some people are. They are incapable of being unselfish, and have no regard for others.

If you’ve ever done first year psychology at uni, I’m sure you’ll be familiar with Piaget’s theory of the stages of development. Up until the age of roughly about seven, we are at a “pre-operational” stage. One characteristic of this stage is having an egocentric view of the world. Having an egocentric perspective means you are only able to consider things from your own point of view and you imagine that everyone shares this view, because it is the only one possible. Some people are just stuck at this stage- perhaps because their parents enabled them to avoid decentering.

And that is part of what makes these people rotten at the core.

So how can you avoid said people?

Well unfortunately my friends, there is no way of getting rid of these people from our lives. They are omnipresent and lurk in every corner of your uni life, your work place, and even in your place of worship.

The best, and only, way is to approach people with caution. Don’t bite in to the apple until you’ve cut it in half to check the core.

There’s a difference between being polite, and being open and trusting to someone.

You can smile and exchange pleasantries with whomever you want, but when it comes to trusting someone, don’t base the trust on wide smiles, gleaming teeth, and a great sense of humour.

Buyers beware: Withhold all trust until you’ve spent a good amount of time getting to know someone based on one on one time with them. Because it is outside of large groups these people show their true colours.

Peak hour traffic.

As I was driving in peak hour traffic today, I realised that life is kind of like driving in peak hour traffic.

When an opportunity comes by it’s kind of like seeing a gap, wide enough, for you to cut in to the fast lane. Hesitate -and you’ll miss it.

Suddenly, you’re stuck in the slow lane. You feel like you’re in a rut because you’re not moving anywhere. Meanwhile, the cars in the other lanes speed past you while you sit in a pool of regret at not having switched lanes.

But like being stuck traffic, it’s not the end of the world. Because at the end of the day, you’ll still get to where you wanted to go. The only difference is, you took longer to get there because you were taking the slow lane.

Because the cosmos/god/whateverdeityyouchoosetobelievein works in mysterious ways, you sometimes even end up getting there faster than the dudes in the other lane- because for some reason their lane slowed down.

So hey, if you missed an amazing opportunity, don’t sweat it. Not only will you get there in the end, but you’ll always have other opportunities, and missing the first one might even turn out to be the best thing that’s happened for you.

 

Are you a passive aggressivist?

There is nothing more counter productive than being passive-aggressive.

The passive-aggressivist is one who will not directly take out their anger on you, nor will they tell you they are angry at you. They will instead half give you the silent treatment- half give you blunt remarks, all the while masking their contempt with a thin veil of civility.

Their aim is to be “polite”, whilst still letting you know they aren’t happy with you.

They are like expanding gas in a balloon, waiting to pop. But the excruciating thing for these people is that they resemble an exponential graph, forever approaching infinity. They are forever expanding, getting uncomfortably stretched, but can never release the pressure.

Note the faint scent of sarcasm.

I think it’s obvious by now why passive-aggressiveness is counter productive.

Doesn’t it just make sense, now, to let the anger go?

Just get it over and done with. Go. Shout at the person you’re angry at – if you must. Let them know what’s bothering you.

Just untie that balloon and let the damn air out so you can remain comfortably flaccid.

At the end of the day there are only two outcomes:

  1. The person finally knows what’s bothering you, and they can change. Chances are they had no idea they even pissed you off and they will care enough to make a compromise for you. Everything is all puppies and rainbows from here on out (until the next time you’re pissed off).

2. The person thinks you’re overreacting, in which case at least you have your differences out in the open. And maybe it’s better the two of you have minimal contact with each other.

Either way, there’s no point bottling up your anger because the only person you’re harming is yourself. And being passive aggressive just makes everyone think you’re being a petty, snarky, female dog.

For those of you who only read the first sentence and skipped to the last: Let it go, let it go, can’t hold it back anymore. Let it go, let it go, turn away and slam the door (after telling them why you’re angry).

 

And that’s my two cents.

xoxo

Ally

Confucius says…

Not that I’m wise or anything, but if I had to give you one piece of advice before I died, it would be this:

Don’t fool yourself in to thinking it’s you and anyone else against the world.

People are assholes by nature because like any other living thing, we have a drive to survive. So remember, things might be all sunflowers and daisies when they have nothing to lose, but the moment their ass is on the line, you see their true colours.

So instead of being knocked over when you realise it’s really just you against the world, prepare yourself for it now.

xoxo

Ally

The grass is always greener on the other side.

One day I’ll go to New York and get lost in all it’s beauty and chaos. I’ll live in a tiny studio apartment in Manhattan, given my upper-middle-tier income, and I’ll walk my tiny chihuahua through Central Park as the sun lowers over the West Side. When the winter comes, I’ll welcome Thanksgiving, my first White Christmas, and the coveted “New Years in Times Square”.

I’ll be another nameless face, squeezing through the crowded streets of Midtown Manhattan to my nine to howeverlongovertimeruns job. That is until the barista at the cafe I’ll frequent everyday knows my name- and my order. I’ll watch the pounds pack on as I make Katz’s Deli my second home. I’ll sit in the exact spot Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan sat in When Harry Met Sally, day dreaming about “the-one” who will sit opposite me.

I’ll watch a broadway show every week! Ticket for one please. I’ll frequent the top of the Empire state building! Ticket for one please.

I’ll wander Fifth-Avenue and be entranced by its prestige, before making several astronomically priced purchases. I’ll even nibble at a pastry outside the Tiffany’s store before heading home. Then I’ll sit in my apartment surrounded by the emptiness of commercialism, listening to the honk of traffic, the blaring of sirens, and the silence of my life, day-dreaming about the city of Paris, in which I’ll one day live.

Boredom and monotony are the parents of reality TV

I had high hopes for my blog. I wanted it to be more philosophical and enlightening than a line out of The Great Gatsby-

“to-morrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther. . . . And then one fine morning— So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past”

But no. A friend said she enjoyed it for light reading. So here I am bringing it down to Keeping Up With the Kardashians level.

Here’s a few stories about some inconsequential things that have happened to me in the past few days.

  • As I strode quickly across the Pyrmont Bridge, on my way home, I heard a gruff, manly voice shouting in the distance. It turned out to be a stout old lady shouting at a Ranger. God knows what she was shouting about but as I walked past I heard him say “I’m here… because I’m protecting people like you, from getting run over by bikes.” I stopped in my tracks and waited till the old lady waddled away before I approached the ranger. I said to him, “Don’t worry. That lady was a massive gronk. As a victim of being run over by a bike myself, I can say I truly appreciate the work you do”. To end the story, there may have been a tear or two of gratitude shed, or not.

  • So as I was strolling through Town Hall station, I became extremely thirsty. Because I was too lazy to make a trip to the Commbank ATM (right outside Woolworths), I decided to get a drink at the Asian convenience store because they accepted EFTPOS. But… oh no. There was a minimum spend of $10. So at the height of my laziness, instead of getting my ass 50 meters up to the ATM, I decided I’d just buy $10 worth of Asian snacks to reach the minimum. Fast forward thirty minutes, my train arrives in Hurstville. As usual, I was in lala land and I didn’t realise I had reached my destination. That is until I looked outside the window and thought to myself, “hey, this platform kinda looks like Hurstville. Oh shit, it is Hurstville”. To my relief, the train was doing that thing where they stop on the platform for five minutes or so before going anywhere. I hurriedly grabbed my sack of gold and ran up the stairs towards my freedom. This next part of the story is the vertex to the inverse parabola that represents this story: As I exited the train my plastic bag, carrying my goodies, broke and my $10 fell in to the eternal darkness of the train tracks. That day, I’m pretty sure my inner happy died a little. I think God was trying to send me a message.

  • This story isn’t just something that’s happened to me in the past few days, but something I’ve begun to do within the past few weeks. There’s a cafe two doors down from my work place. I used to get coffee from them pretty much every single day. That is until I discovered a better cafe just upstairs from them. So now – every day- after I get my coffee, I take the long way around to get to work just so I don’t have to walk past the first cafe and hurt the barista’s feelings.
  • That’s probably how the barista feels, though. And probably how you all feel about my stories.

Quarter-life Crisis

So as you all may or may not know I’ve always wanted to be a doctor. And as you all may or may not also know, dentistry has also recently entered the picture like a sultry mistress.

So here’s how it happened. I was looking for a new job because I’d been meaning to quit my “amazing”  job at You Studio Photography for about a year (I worked there for a year). I was on the USYD Career Hub page and applied for a million different jobs.

Long story short, with no previous dental assisting experience, I got a job as a dental nurse at a practice close to uni. I guess the dentist just decided to take a chance on an unknown kid.

Even  though the dentist was a complete ass sometimes, I found dentistry quite-the-interesting. And seeing the amount of money he made on a daily basis didn’t hurt either.

A few months on, I found a similar job at another practice. This practice was much more modern, offered me a full time position, and now I’m working as a dental nurse/ practice manager (I’m a good multi tasker… said no one ever) for them. I’m quite enjoying the whole experience, and dentistry is becoming more and more appealing. Yet no part of me wants to let go of my childhood dream. So what do I do?

And to take an even bigger dump on my worries, there’s the GAMSAT in March, which I feel completely and utterly under-prepared for. I procrastinate because every time I open a book to study I see a big fat sign telling me I’m going to fail, and it’s just reminding me of the consequences if I do fail.

So what was the point of this story? Well a conversation with a friend actually helped me overcome my anxieties.

  1. Sometimes looking at the bigger picture isn’t the best thing.
    We all have these major life goals we want to accomplish, and that’s all we see. They’re so far off in the future, and require so much work, that it becomes so easy to be depressed when our goals aren’t achievable in the immediate future. Admit it. We just want instant gratification.
    Take me for example. I just want to hurry up and be a dentist or a doctor already. The fact that I’ve already spent 4 years at uni, and I’m still not a doctor or a dentist yet, has been incredibly depressing and demotivating. It kind of feels like my life is neither on track, nor going anywhere. Yet the fact that I’m not a doctor/dentist yet is inevitable. I knew from the start that I’d be at least 25 before I could graduate as either one of those professions.
    The DL is: you need to break down your huge goal in to smaller goals. You need little milestones to make you feel like you’re at least doing something to achieve your dream. At the moment I have to study for the GAMSAT. Without a good GAMSAT score I can forget achieving my dream.
  2.  Find a way to stay on target and actually work at your smaller goals.
    After you’ve broken down your ultimate goal in to smaller goals, it’s still easy to procrastinate and feel overwhelmed by the fear of failure. You don’t want to work hard and then look like an ass when you fail.
    The DL is: make a list of all the things you have to gain from working at your smaller goals. If you achieve your smaller goals does it mean you’ll one day get your giant mansion, huge income, and dream job? Then make a list of all the things you have to lose from working at your smaller goals. You’ll find it’s a very small list. The only thing you really have to lose is… nothing. Sure you might fail, but that leads me to my next point.
  3. It doesn’t matter if you fail because you’re doing this for YOU
    We’re afraid of failing because we’re scared to make a fool of ourselves in the public eye. You don’t want to fail because your parents might be disappointed. Or you think your friends are secretly judging you. But take a second to think how you’ll feel about failing if no one knew you failed. If you were the only person who knew you needed to try again. Personally, I wouldn’t care so much. I would just pick myself up and try again.
    This is the reason why I never tell people if I’m going for a driving test, or if I’m applying for a job. If I don’t get it, at least no one will know.
    So maybe what you and I really need is to keep it all to ourself. Don’t brag to everyone about all the amazing things you want to accomplish. Sure it’s okay to seek some advice from friends regarding it, but remember, the more people you tell, the more you’ll fear failing.
    If you’re not convinced, let me ask you this. Why are little kids so damn good at skiing, and doing other dangerous stuff, like learning back flips and s***. Because they’re not afraid to fall.
  4. Look at the bigger picture for a second.
    Okay so I know I told you not to look at the bigger picture before… but just for a second look at the bigger picture. Compare say… one year’s of hard work and study to fifty years of feeling happy. That’s 12 months of being miserable compared to 600 months of happiness. And why will you be happy? Because you’ll have achieved your dream and the rest of your life will be rainbows and sparkles and unicorns (mostly).

Anyways, that’s my two cents.

xo xo

Ally

It was my youngest sister’s birthday yesterday, and shopping for her gift made me realise just how little I know about her. Now don’t get me wrong – this isn’t one of those relationships where we’ve never been close because we just don’t get along. There’s just always been a limit to how close we could be because of our age difference. I would ask her about her friends and school and she’d tell me about it – you know, who her best friend was, who was being bitchy, what her teacher was like etc. I never really told her anything about my life outside of home because I just always thought it’d be inappropriate.

It used to be so easy getting gifts for her though. I knew that she’d like anything with a Disney princess on it, particularly Cinderella, who was her favourite. Then, as I noticed she’d outgrown Disney princesses and moved on to different fads her friends were in to, like Polly Pockets, Bratz Dolls or Littlest Pet Shop, that’s what I got her (Google that shit if you don’t know what it is).

But then a whole bunch of stuff happened, and I became more distant from my family. I pretty much moved out at the end of last year and even though I do visit home, I don’t really talk to my youngest sister at all because she kind of just hides in her room most of the time. The last thing I remember her liking was One Direction.

But she seemed to transform from a sweet, innocent, child in to an angst teenager, overnight. As I walked in to her room one day, I’d noticed all her One Direction posters were gone. I asked her why she’d taken them down and she replied, “I don’t know, I don’t really like them anymore”, And when I asked why, she said, “because they’re stupid”. Even though those words were a relief to me, I was still shocked by the sudden 180. As the weeks passed by, her wall became increasingly covered with posters of Korean pop stars. I noticed her watching Kpop on SBS during certain weekends I was home.

So she likes Kpop now…

So anyway, that all led me to the dilemma yesterday. I had absolutely no idea what she’d like. I had to trawl through her Facebook photos to try and gauge what she might like.

To be honest, because we’d grown a bit distant, I was going to just settle on getting her a cake (terrible sister I know, but fear not, I did end up getting her a few gifts). But then several memories popped in to my head that touched the little fibres in my heart. I remember on this one birthday, she’d left a hand made card and a cellophane wrapped gift on my desk before I got home to surprise me. She was young, and didn’t have any money, but she still went to the effort to get me something. And this other time, during Christmas, she made me take her to a book store and asked me to pick something so she could buy it for me because she knew I liked to read.

I guess the main reason it was so hard to get a gift for her today is because I still see her as that little girl. It’s so hard for me to let go of that image of her. Most of me doesn’t want to acknowledge that she’s growing up fast. And now I know how parents feel when their kids are becoming independent young adults.

It seems like just yesterday I was watching her in her cot, making sure she didn’t crawl out. Because the cheeky devil liked to hold the rails and bounce up and down like she was ready to jump out. And it feels like just yesterday her, my other sister, and I found giant black plastic bags and decided to use them in a jumping bag race. And it feels like just yesterday she needed my help guiding her way through life.

I honestly wish my sisters and I were like the Brady Bunch. You know, braiding each other’s hair and DnMing and stuff. But that just isn’t the way our family is. We’ve always been distant, especially with my dad being overseas most of the time.

But I guess I’ve got an extra item for my bucket list then. Become closer with my sisters before I’m 30. Because nothing can adequately describe how much I love them and I don’t want to live the rest of my life never talking to them, or barely being in contact with them, like my parents and their siblings.

90’s kids

Watching this video made me extremely nostalgic for the better days, when things were simpler. When the best thing your parents could give you was a happy meal for lunch, and when homework meant drawing title-pages/contacting your books. You know, back in the days when you didn’t have obnoxious tweens hashtagging YOLO on all their half-naked luvos on Instagram. When ripped shorts that showed half your butt cheeks meant that you REALLY needed some new jeans. And when kids demanded Sunnyboys after school and not new iPads.

What to consider when getting a job.

If you’re asking me what sort of qualifications I have that enables me to be giving such advice, I’ll have to be honest. I don’t have any formal qualifications but I’m kind of a job whore. I’ve been through so many jobs that I’ve left out quite a few on my resume (because employers don’t like job whores), and there’s been many times when I’ve held two or three jobs at once.

Now when I say job, let me emphasize that I distinguish this from a career. There’s a whole bunch of different things you have to consider when choosing a career, but I won’t go in to that.

But if you’re a Uni student like me, either looking for your first job, or looking for another job because your last one was a flop, but you were really liking the extra income it gave you, then you should take these following things in to consideration in order to avoid being a job whore like me, and find a job you can stick with. Not only will you get more solid references to put on your resume later on, to other employers, you look like a more reliable worker.

So here goes, what to consider when finding that part-time job you want to stick with:

  1. Location, location, location.
    From personal experience, I know that I’ve taken up many job offers, without considering exactly how much time I’ll take to get to the job. When you’re desperate for a job, or money, you sort of don’t care how far you have to travel to get paid. But learn from my mistakes. A job that is too far out of the way, is not a sustainable job. You’ll be looking for a new job within a few months because it’s just too much of a hassle to get to, and no one wants to start the day with the feeling of dread of having to travel for more than an hour to work. Picture two jobs: one is a mere 20 minutes a way, hell, maybe it’s right downstairs if you’re lucky. Another job is on the other side of the city, and you have to catch two trains and a bus to get there. Comparing the jobs, you get a whole extra hour (maybe more) of sleep. And a well slept worker = a happy one.
  2. Your workmates.
    Okay, so you’ve found a job at a good location, and you’ve taken up the job offer. But are you going to keep the job? Well it all depends on your workmates. It doesn’t matter how shitty or not fulfilling your job is, or how much of a dickhead your boss is, having workmates you can get along with is the key to maintaining a long-term job. Why? Because cool workmates get you through a crappy shift. You can all just b**** about how shitty your job is, how much of a dick your boss is being, or about rude customers. Maybe you’ll even have a cool boss who will join in on the b****.Awesome Boss
    I had this one job I managed to stay at for a year, which only paid $19 p/h. During the time I was there, I picked up another job paying $23 p/h. I only stayed there for a few months before quitting. Money was the incentive at first, but my workmates at the first job were just so much cooler. Getting through an 8 hour shift was a breeze there, whilst minutes felt like hours at the second job.
  3. Make sure you can actually balance it with uni.
    So many times I’ve been so desperate to get a new job, I’ve simply said yes to all the shifts they requested I do. Not only did I get burnt out quicker, I was starting to fall behind on my uni work and I was skipping lectures (non-compulsory) to attend shifts. I was completing my assignments last minute and it resulted in me having to take time off from work to catch up.
    This just wasn’t a good set up because no matter what, your education always comes first. You’ll need it if you want to graduate from your degree, and finally get started on that awesome career you’re waiting to climb up in.
    Also, employers don’t like you flaking out on shifts. They hired you in the first place, because they needed a person to work for them during those particular hours and days. So if you’re actually liking the job, you wouldn’t want to lose it because your employer now sees you as unreliable.
    Post Work Routine
  4. The Pay.
    I know I said before the other stuff trumps the pay, but it doesn’t mean it’s not important, Some employers won’t tell you how much you’re getting paid, especially if they don’t intend on paying you a fair wage. And many don’t ask their wage during the interview because they feel rude, or they feel like it’s inappropriate.
    This is what I’ve come to realise: It’s not rude! In fact, you are being a responsible employee by getting all the details before you start your job. You have a right to know how much you’ll be getting paid, and no matter how much they talk up the job, and how awesome they make it sound, firstly, know. your. wage.
    You don’t want to start the job, get attached, and then leave because the wage is too low for the amount of labour you put it.

    This is How Everyone in Retail Feels Like

    This pretty much summarizes it.

  5. The Job Itself
    Even though this isn’t a career, make sure your job is enjoyable. And if not, at least make sure it’s bearable. Say the shifts are Monday, Wednesday and Friday, from 8am till 5pm. Really make sure that you can go through 24 hours of doing this task every week.
    Let me give you an example. I worked at a call center as a telemarketer, where the shifts were a mere 4 hours. My workmates were young and hip, and pretty cool cats overall. The pay was not bad either. But after just two weeks of sitting there, dialing good people to try and get them to donate so that it’d cover my wage (and the charity would get the rest), I wanted to shoot myself in the ear by the 2nd hour of every shift. All I wanted to do was get the f*** home.
    So when you’re looking for a job, or going in to an interview for a job, make sure you know exactly what kind of work you’re getting yourself in to. And make sure it’s bearable.Daydreaming at Work

Anyways, that’s my two cents worth. Hopefully it’ll be even mildly helpful to you in your quest to finding the perfect part-time job. Make sure when you do find that awesome job, though, that you don’t become a shopaholic and continuously blow your weekly wage because you’re “SO RICH NOW”. Because nek minnit, you’ll be telling your friends you’re “SO BROKE RIGHT NOW”.

Good luck on your job search!

Love,

Ally.