The Realities Of A Final Year Fashion Student

21.3.21

The Realities Of A Final Year Fashion Student

Final year is just eight months of craziness. A rollercoaster ride of emotions and not like anything I’ve experienced before. Throughout my time at school and in sixth form, I was always excited to start my next chapter. Unless my grades changed, I knew that what ever the next step was, that I had planned, was going to happen. However, being in your final year of uni is just a constant mix of excitement, to finish your degree, and the feeling of the unknown, as what is going to happen next. 

Pre-Covid final year always brought so much more excitement. The chance to finish uni and celebrate or  be able to graduate and have all your family and friends cheering you on. But, Covid life brings a whole new meaning to the word anti-climax. Although you’re excited to finish and have nothing left to do towards your degree, there’s no set celebration once you hand your dissertation in. I’m hoping there will be something small this year, as we’re heading into a post corona world. But, that still doesn’t change the craziness of the job world awaiting us outside. 

There’s so many things I mention in this post, I’m sure I could write a whole series on it. But, for now I’ll just keep it to three that are really relevant to my life right now… 

  1. The Job World 

If you don’t know much about the fashion industry, then the way to describe it is competitive. It may seem like all we do if flick through vogue or spend our time finding the next big trend. Although, both of these may be part of our job, there is SO much more to the fashion world. 

Recently, I’ve really stepped up my job search, in the hope I will get something secured for as soon as I’ve finished uni, or not too long after. So, now LinkedIn is officially my new best friend, and I’m obsessed with seeing if any new jobs have been posted. I spend my spare time scrolling for anything I can apply for and trying to stay optimistic that the right thing is coming my way. 

My advice for anyone who relates to this, is to stay positive, keep applying and think of ways you can stand out. 

2. The Assignment Guilt 

No matter what anyone says, assignment guilt is a real thing. It consumes your whole life, as you feel like you should be constantly working. Going on placement, and learning what times of the day I work best, has helped me to switch off this guilt, but its always there in the back of my head. 

I find the best way to combat it, is to find a space that you work well in. Give yourself set times of the day, or a set amount of time to get a certain job done. Then, when you complete that, you feel like you’ve accomplished something for the day. Also, I find having a part time job helps me to turn off from uni work and just focus on something else for a while. 

To be honest, I find the less time you spend over thinking the assignment, and the more you crack on with it, the more effective you work and the better the assignment comes out. 

3. The End Of A Chapter 

Whether uni has been for you or not, I think everyone has the sadness of this chapter of your life coming to an end. You’re finally going to finish education and start your career. It’s something you’ve been waiting for, for so long, but it has also seemed to come around so quickly.

For me, I know what I want to do and hopefully I’ll be able to find a job and get myself on that path. But, I also have lots of friends that have decided to do something different. Take their career in a different direction and that’s what is best for them. 

The most exciting part for me now, is that yes the chapter is ending but a new chapter is just about the begin. As much as the fear of the unknown is there, it is also exciting to think there’s so many amazing days to come. 

A Letter To My Mum

14.3.21

A Letter To My Mum

Talking to my mum is something I think about everyday. I’m always thinking about what she would say or do in certain moments in life. It’s something that I find the hardest part of grief, as I can’t pick up the phone and ask for her advice.

 I realise not many of you know anything about my mum, unless you know me or her personally. But she was the wisest and most honest person I knew. She would always tell you the right thing to do morally, but never judge you if you didn’t follow her advice. 

To me she was the perfect mum, who guided me through my life but without any judgement. All she truly wanted was for me to be happy and follow my own path in life. 

It’s now over two years since my lovely mum graced the earth and became my beautiful guardian angel. The grief never does get easier or better, but I have learnt to live with the moments without her by my side. 

Although I’ve spent the last two years accepting her loss, the hurt and heart break seems to linger. I’m only just starting to accept these feelings and feel ready to share my a little bit of my story on here. I would love anyone else who is young and lost their mum, to have someone else they can relate to. A person who feels the way they feel and has the emotions they do. 

As it’s Mothers Day I wanted to write a letter to my mum and share some of the things I would love to say to her, if she was here…

Dear Mum, 

I wanted to start off by saying Happy Mothers Day. I know I can’t spend today with you, but of course you’re always in my heart and mind everyday. 

I can’t believe it’s been over two years now since I last saw your smiling face. You really were the light in so many people’s lives and the memory of you continues to do this everyday. I wish you were here to give me a hug and tell me your words of wisdom. What you would think about the house, finishing uni and starting my dream career. 

You were my biggest cheerleader and the only one that truly understood my career journey. You were the one behind me when I got my GCSE and my A-level results and helped me pick my uni. Everything I go through in life reminds me of you, and I know exactly where I get my strength and determination from. You were the most generous, warm hearted and caring person I know. So, I hope I can continue those traits and make both of you proud. 

I’ll forever miss you at big events in my life. You should have been there to see me graduate, walk down the aisle and hopefully make you an amazing grandma. But I know that your presence will always be around me and my future family, no matter what journey I’m on. 

I hope you’re looking down with pride now and always. 

Miss and love you to the moon and back – Love Rachel xxx

5 Way’s I’m Learning To Overcome Set Backs

The last few months have been a crazy rollercoaster of emotions for me. I know it has been for everyone during lockdown. One minute I’m happy, loving life and another minute I’m not looking after myself and starting and finishing work late everyday. Being on placement too and working a full time job during lockdown, still learning new things everyday, has definitely had its challenges. I’ve had to learn how to be more independent, work on my own without all my colleagues around and really understand how crucial it is to put yourself first. A few weeks ago I really had got to a point where I just had to stop and re-evaluate my work, life balance. I was just working so hard, trying to do everything perfectly and ultimately just burning myself out. Since then I’ve had a good few weeks of work, with a fresh mind set and hope that this set back is behind me. So, I thought a lot of you might have been having similar situations and that I would share how I refreshed my mind set and got over my set back.

Set back’s are one of the hardest things for anyone to overcome, this could be in private life or in at work, but they are even harder when you’re a perfectionist and you want everything to be perfect. However, the fact of life is that nothing can ever be perfect, there’s always going to be things that are out of your control, things that happen that are not ideal and not how you planned. But I’m really learning now that it’s not about what the set back was but it’s about how you’re going to move forward from it.

1. ADDRESS THE SET BACK

This might seem really obvious but just taking a step back to address the set back and what’s happen just helps you put some objective clarity on everything. For me I just had to step back from work, understand why I was feeling so burnt out and what things were causing me to feel so stressed. So then when I went back I could have fresh eyes and try to create a new routine for myself, to stop me from getting burnt out again.

2. TAKE SOME TIME OUT

This could be taking some holiday off work to have a mini break away or to just spend time with friends and family. Just whatever takes you out of your normal day to day environment, where you can wind down and relax. Then you can really just switch your head off from the situation and spend time with people you love. I know that always makes me feel so much better.

3. TALK TO SOMEONE

When you’ve had a setback I can guarantee that someone you know had had a similar one too, at some point. They can always give you the best advice and tips of how they got over it. Also, there’s so many articles online that can really help, sometimes all you need is to talk over the situation, then park it and move on.

4. BE KIND TO YOURSELF

This is something I’m still working on, but the best way I try to think about it is only ever talk to yourself like you would to a friend. For example if you’ve been trying to loose weight and had a set back, where you’ve not lost any for a while, you would never tell your friend you still look fat and are a failure. So don’t ever tell yourself that. Be kind and understanding with yourself. We’re all humans, we make mistakes and we are even better at moving on.

5. MOVING ON

This is the best and the hardest part, as you now have to face the situation again. It could be going back to work, trying to get a friendship back on track or seeing your partner that you’ve been having time out with. Whatever it is it’s time to try to try it again. The best way I did this was to create a different work environment for myself and be strict. Try to create a different feeing when I opened my laptop and not the feeling of dread I had before. It’s all about moving on and try to forget what happened before and start a fresh, as holding onto things is always heavier than you think.

How To Stay Motivated & Still Reach Your Goals In 2020

Staying motivated is one of the biggest struggles I’m having at the minute. Maybe its because I’ve over lockdown and just need to get out and have a bit more normality in my life But, it’s a real struggle to get up everyday and get my work head on. Just to be able to switch on my computer and be able to fully concentrate and be just as productive as I am in the office, would be a dream. Just because we’re starting to get back to our normal routine’s, doesn’t mean we need to be our best selves everyday. I know I’m definitely not and actually finding it so hard to not beat myself up and remember this is a crazy time and I’m allowed to have off-days. I thought you might be feeling the same, whether you’ve been working at home for the last 10 weeks or getting ready to go back, here’s a few ways I keep myself motivated and ideas I want to try over the next few months to get me through working at home. 

This is something I’ve not get tried but I’ve seen so many people talk about it. Basically you create a visual board to represent goals or things you want to achieve throughout the next year. I think this would be perfect for me, as sometimes I get so caught up on the smaller details and everyday things, that I forget the bigger goal and what I’m working towards. Like when I do something wrong at work and beat myself up, I forget its all helping me grow and develop as a person and do better in my career. So if I had a quick vision board to look, during these times I really remember the reason behind what I’m doing. I also think it helps you stay focused and remind yourself what you want in your life and not to settle until you have these things. 

This links to the first point, but I honestly think it really helps you to give you clarification and perspective on things. For me the reason why I do everything is to make my family proud and to know that my mum and dad are looking down on me with pride. I want to achieve my goals and be able to live a comfortable and happy life. Go on nice holidays, treat my family and friends, give myself a settled life and be in a position to be able to support charities and special causes. Of course this is a long way off, but when I’m having a bad day it helps me remember what my end goal is and the person I want to be in the future. I definitely have days when this isn’t even a option to think about, but its something I want to force myself to think about more and stop getting so caught up in small hurdles or failures. 

This is the biggest lesson I need to learn from myself, as I honestly need to believe in myself more. Whenever I fail or feel unmotivated I loose all faith in my ability and myself. One of my favourite quotes is ‘believe in yourself and you’re halfway there’ and this is so true! Half of the battle is knowing you can ace that exam, nail that presentation or get a high grade on that assignment, but its hard when you’re struggling and want to do the best you can. So, we can all take a lesson from this and believe in ourselves more. Know we are enough, that we have the ability to achieve anything and deserve to succeed just as much as anyone else does.

Due to these crazy times it’s so hard for a lot of us to achieve our goals. I know for a lot of my friends who are finishing uni and closing an amazing chapter in their lives, are so scared of the future and what else is to come. When they will get a job, how long it will be and just what to expect next. So, use the time to think how you can work towards your goals. Do a course in something you love, create new goals to make yourself a better person or create new routines for yourself. Spend time researching or update your linkedin profile. There’s s0 many other ways to achieve your goals, just not necessarily the normal ways you would think. Or if you really can’t reach them this year, then be okay that it’s going to take longer than you wanted, don’t be down hearted as no one planned for a global pandemic to happen. 

When I’ve had a bad day or really struggling with something, I find taking some time out to think over it, is great. Just reflecting on what happened, what I could have done better and them ultimately just getting over it. I think the biggest battle is accepting it happened, moving on and accepting its part of the journey. I’m a perfectionist and like things to be done to a high-standard, which means I have high standards for myself too. So like I always mention, I love having a bath, watching my favourite or delving into a new series, and also chatting it through with a friend or family member. They see you from a different perspective and love you for who you are. They will always give you true and honest advice.

10 Round Ideas To Change Up Your Next Zoom Quiz

Keeping in touch with family and friends online has become such a massive thing for not only me but across the country. I feel like Zoom has never been so popular. I’ve honestly never done so many quizzes in my life and I’ve now become and expert in finding fun new quiz rounds to try. I’m definitely not a quizzer and frankly I’m awful at quizzes, so I love a modern quiz with different picture, music and just random rounds to keep me engaged. As you could probably guess the traditional history and geography rounds just really aren’t my vibe or tailored to anything I really know. So, I thought I would share 10 fun quiz rounds for you to try. Some I’ve already tried and loved and other’s are one’s I’m still waiting to include… 

1. Find The Object:

This is a round I love the sound of and can’t wait to try out. I just think it’s such a fun and interactive way to do a quiz. Basically all you need to do is choose a list of different objects and whoever brings back the item onto the screen first wins the point. It’s not intellectual at all but a fun way to keep people entertained during lock down! 

2. Baby Photo’s / Celeb Baby Photos:

This is one of my favourites a great way to get to know each other or just test everyone’s knowledge. It’s always so interesting to see if people have changed from their baby photo or still have the same face as they do now. If you can’t get baby photos then do celebrity one’s instead. They are super easy to find on the internet and always a topic of great discussion. 

3. Guess the TV Set:

This is a new one I’ve recently discovered and was in my family quiz last night. Basically all you do is find pictures of different tv show sets and you have to guess where it’s from. I’ve also added in a questions about the number of episodes or you could ask about the number of views that programme has had too!

4. Emoji Quizzes:

These are just everywhere at the moment and you can get hold of one really easily. Basically you choose a theme and then make a set of emojis to represent it. For example different tv shows, countries, sayings or capital cities. If you don’t find one you like then you can easily make one yourself and its a fun way to change up your quiz rounds. 

5. 50 50 Questions:

This round is a bit more traditional, but easy to play. All you have to do is choose two things and you either choose one or another. For example, which one is biggest, which logo is correct, or which picture is right! This one is still great for avid quizzers and you can some really hard ones in there too. 

6. Theme Show Songs:

I love this round and its one of my favourite’s. I just what way too much TV, especially at the minute and so its a great way to test your knowledge. It takes a while to set up as you have to get each song downloaded to easily play during your quiz. But I just think it’s really interactive and fun! 

7. Who’s Most Likely Too?

This is a great one to do with friends or family, you just need to know each other quite well. Basically just pick various statements and who ever gets the most votes for each statement wins the point. So if 5 people choose a certain person then they each win a point. I love questions like who’s most likely to become prime minister or embarrass themselves in public. If you google this then loads of fun questions will come up!

8. Logo Quiz:

Again not a traditional round for a quiz but a super fun and family friendly idea. You wouldn’t believe the amount of logo we see in our daily lives and notice. This is one of my favourites to play as I actually know quite a lot. 

9. It’s All About This:

To keep it interesting its super fun to have a whole round about one thing. This could be all about Disney, all about London or just a random topic. Its the ultimate test of knowledge about a certain topic and is just a good laugh as some people love them and some just hate them too!

10. Merge That Face:

This is a great round to just have a good laugh. All you need to do is find a website where you can merge two people’s face together. It could be two celebrities or two of your friends or family. It’s just a fun way to change up your quiz and always makes every laugh.