I’ll be the first to admit that while I was in northern Florida, where it was 45 – 60 degrees about 95% of the time, I spent most of my days curled up on the couch with a cup of cocoa, enjoying an absence of school. Now, while this may sound like a bunch of pointless lying around, I have taken this break as an opportunity to practice something I struggle with – Calm. In IB, you are surrounded by workload and those infamous looming deadlines, all topped off by college applications and testing pressure. I found that in the first trimester I struggled to decompress and I was constantly stressed, which led to numerous breakdowns and affected my family members very negatively. I have taken this break as an opportunity to practice two skills: Relaxation and confidence. In terms of relaxation, Ive practiced breathing techniques that help in intense situations as well as what I call the Moonview mindset, where you see that your problems are relatively small compared to the big picture. With confidence, I’ve learned that being overconfident can actually trick ur brain into thinking you can do the task that is causing fear. I plan on putting this mindset into practice with IB, specifically to combat procrastination. Anyways, back on activity, I have done two main things this break to help others. The first is with the CEPIA project headed by Sibley Zepeda – I have helped her by organizing hundreds of presents as well as providing valuable insight into what boys of various ages might like for Christmas.I also took the opportunity to help my mom clean up the house she’s trying to sell. I spent hours cleaning up trash, old vases, and plants from the yard while also setting up inside furnishings. I have also done a fair amount of physical activity this break, including a new sport called Airsoft (where u carry guns that fire plastic rounds in a game similar to laser tag) and tennis with our beloved Edgar Marin. Whether it was for others or for personal growth, I believe that activity will be the key to surviving the second trimester of IB. Exercise releases endorphins, teaches endurance, instills perseverance, and above all is incredibly entertaining. Not to mention when you help others you make their lives easier, alleviating stress and contributing to your class, the family that will get you through IB.
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