CORE of Wellness

I’m teaching CORE 103, a first-year life-skills class at Drury University, and post my weekly blog focused on the class content.

Wellness encompasses many areas of our life. By looking at the complete picture of wellness, you’re able to build a more comprehensive plan to move yourself toward a healthy life.  You can see my personal wellness goals for this year on my Theme Year page.


You have to start somewhere, and ever experience you have teaches a life lesson–whether it be what not to do or improves your career skills or goal.  Always focus on positive relationships, because every person matters.  They matter in what you can learn from them, what they can learn from you and how you can collaborate together.  My first big-girl job was in retail and at the time, I thought it was a waste.  But guess what? The job I have right now, I’m much better at it because of my retail experience–every job teaches you something.


When you have a decision in front of you to choose things or to choose people, always choose people.  Family matters.  Whether it’s the family you’re born/adopted into, the family you create for yourself or your community of friends; Family matters. Invest your time, energy and love into making your family unit a safe, caring place for everyone involved.


Spend less than you earn. When you practice financial wellness, you are able to make lasting decisions in other areas of your life.


Spend time with what you enjoy.  Things that will relax you, things that will push you, things that will empower you.  I love to read and devote my relaxation time to this practice.



Eat the good foods first, so they fill you up.  If you can, make water your go-to beverage.  Exercise at least 30 minutes per day.  Walk everywhere and when you have to drive, park far away.  Find reasons to make yourself more physically active and a healthy eater–your body will thank you and once it’s a habit, you’ll feel like a weight has been lifted off of your chest.


Spend time with others in healthy  positive relationships.  Eliminate the negative people from your life; it’s hard at first, but makes a world of difference in your health and well-being.


Discover what you believe and share it with others.  Meet others where they are to help them understand where you are coming from.  Devote time to mindful reflection and study to strengthen your understanding of your beliefs.


Diversity CORE Trifecta

I’m teaching CORE 103, a first-year life-skills class at Drury University, and post my weekly blog focused on the class content.

I spent my first year as the financial minority, working in one of the top most affluent areas in the United States. It was also my first job after college and it all seemed new and exciting. On my first day, I informed by my co-workers, as they sipped their expensive drinks and lounged in the sun, that I didn’t fit in—I was young and probably a little uncultured, but I was smart and determined to use it to my advantage. I will always remember their words and that moment, but it didn’t faze me; I was used to being an outsider. What I confirmed, however, is that the harder you work, the quicker you advance—and I was only too happy to prove them right, I didn’t fit in—I was going to step right over them and continue to move forward. I’m glad I was able to do this so quickly.

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The CORE of finding where you belong

I’m teaching CORE 103, a first-year life-skills class at Drury University, and post my weekly blog focused on the class content.


Try new things.

Being in a new place, meeting new people and starting over again can be scary.  But, this too shall pass–get out there and try new things.

  • Residential Students: meet new people in your living area, make an effort to find people who like the same things as you.
  • Commuter Students: Don’t eat lunch in your car–find a friend or a special place and make the best of your situation.

Sure it’s awkward at first, most things are.  But, trying new things makes the new things the comfortable things sooner than you’d think.


Realize the power of connections.

Regardless of your college experience  you’re going to meet other people.  Some people will become your friends, some people will become mentors and some people will become your life-line later in your life.  Every person you meet matters and will make an impact on your present and your future.  You are in charge of what this impact will become.


Know when to ask for help.

You don’t know all of the answers and you probably have some pretty important questions.  You have people around you everywhere that can and want to help you.  It’s not weakness to share your needs; it’s incredibly strong.

Your parents can’t solve all of your problems for you.

You are a competent individual that makes good decisions.  Sure, your parents/family/guardians may be a great sounding board, but you’ll grow by leaps and bounds by handling your own questions, addressing your own problems, facilitating your own meetings and finding your own solutions.


Never, Never, Never give up.

You may spend most of your college years as a poor, starving college student that scrapes together a miracle each semester to remain in college.  It’s worth it.  These problems will test your perseverance  will make you stronger and will help you realize all that you can accomplish.  When you want something bad enough: Never, Never, Never give up.

The Core of Meaningful Involvement

To some, Meaningful Involvement is a concept that is simultaneously mysterious and obvious.  Sure, involvement seems easy and yes, experiences should have meaning.  But in a society that tells us “more is the answer!” how do you teach, and more importantly learn, the balance and importance of Meaningful Involvement?


Do what you love. 

Part of getting involved in college is to build your resume.  But it doesn’t end there.  You need a sense of belonging, to make friends with similar interests and to spend time in activities that you enjoy.  Find positive experiences that you enjoy to improve your college years and beyond.

Change is the only thing that remains the same.

Your interests will change, your friends will change, your groups will change and the rules always change.  You need to be adaptable, progressive and confident as you push toward your goal.

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The Core Of What I Know

We have the power to make our lives how we want them to be.  It takes determination, focus and perseverance, but I know that the path to success is understanding the little things that make it possible.

Play to your strengths.

I’m driven, organized, and work best when I have tasks/reminders written down.  I know this and have managed my entire life through these successful practices. I never skipped a college class (undergrad or graduate), I always turned work in early, and I never waited until the last-minute. Keeping myself organized helps me lead a productive, low-stress lifestyle–now as much as back in college.


Major accomplishments are really all about the details.

In 2011, I became a runner.  I ran 486 miles and decided that in 2012, I’d run 1000 miles.  It took work and dedication, but I did it–1030 miles.  How did I do it? I didn’t run 1000 miles in one day.  I had a SMART Plan: Run 5 miles a day, four days a week no matter if it was sunny, hot, snowy, cold, rainy, dark–it’s all about dedication.

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