Nicole's Engl blog

Thought Catalog

Things I wrote to myself and try to read daily.

Here are notes I have shared and try to read daily. I have found them to be useful in times of confusion and depressed days.

  1. Figure out what you want. Go really deep into questioning yourself.
  2. Figure out who fits in that journey with you. Focus on the ones that will help you or fit right in.
  3. Don’t ask how to do something. Just do it, then figure out what was missing. Fix it. Then work on it some more. Ship always.
  4. Find out that number one thing you are good at and can help with.
  5. Everything I have done, I have done for hope of recognition and fame. Now let me do it for none.
  6. I don’t like it because I’m good at it. I’m good at it because I like it — Neil Degrasse Tyson.
  7. You have to learn the…

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Thought Catalog

1. Nothing beautiful ever came from an easy life. Nothing truly incredible ever came from times of ease and contentment. We’d never enjoy the daytime if we didn’t have the night.

2. We naturally want to reach for more. Until we literally reach nirvana, we’re designed to be striving for better, and it’s not always the worst thing.

3. With that said, it’s also extremely important to realize the beauty in the art of being. Allowing yourself to embrace the journey, but to rest at whatever step you’re at and enjoy it, as you’ll never be back there again.

4. Real transformations and miracles are always preceded by pain and suffering. Lost things are always just making room for others to be found.

5. If there’s one thing we know about existence, it’s that nothing remains for too long, not even our sorrows.

6. You are a constant unfolding of…

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Thought Catalog

I’ve always had close friends who are significantly older than me. One awesome advantage to this is they generally treat me to lunch when we go out. (There is such a thing as a free lunch! In your face, Milton Friedman. Okay, obviously the lunch isn’t technically free but it’s free for me and that’s what counts.) Anyway, the other great advantage is I get a lot of tips and tidbits of good advice about how to enjoy my twenties and be independent and all that good stuff. Honestly, I feel like I’ve been in my twenties a really long time even though I’m not even at the half way point yet. But when you move across the world at seventeen by yourself, you grow up really fast. So, I’ve taken it upon myself to curate a cheat sheet for how to win at life. Of course, I am still…

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Thought Catalog

1. Look at yourself in the mirror every morning before you go out the door and give yourself at least one compliment that you actually believe — even if it has nothing to do with your body. Even “Your sweater looks nice today!” will work.

2. Give friends real, squeezy hugs when you greet them and tell them that you’re happy to see them.

3. Make an effort to be especially polite and kind to people you talk to throughout the day for mundane, work-or-errand-oriented things. Try to make the interaction as pleasant as possible, even if the content is boring.

4. Speak clearly and articulately when you want to get a point across, making sure to illuminate your ideas well. If it seems like someone is not understanding what you’re saying, try and help them understand in a kind way, without making them feel like they’re stupid for not…

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a)  how has your writing developed since beginning the OFFA pieces?

I have found that im not too sure if my OFFA pieces have improved, because I found the quality my response was often based on the prompt its self, and if it sparked interest in me. Rather than how long and how much I had been writing. But I have found that my writing that I look to polish and improve has grown and improved, I think this has been mostly due to the seminar sessions where we work shopped pieces  people including myself have written, seeing what works and what didn’t work ahs helped me develop my writing.

b)  how would you characterize your personal writing style?

I am not sure that I have a particular writing style that I can describe, YET. But I did pretty much zero writing before this class but I hope to do some beyond this course, and I am sure one day I will be able to fit my writing style into a particular category.

c)  would your six word memoir be different today?

My six word memoir at the beginning of the year was “I am just not there yet” and I feel it works even more now than I did then. I can even put that in terms of  my writing as I did in the question above, I feel my writing is not fully developed, and I can still do lots to improve my practice. Therefore I am just not there yet still applies as I feel like it will in most points in my life. Maybe if I had more than ten minutes I could generate a six word memoir more specific to my writing and experience in this class.

d)     what have you learned about yourself and your writing through the process?

I think the most important thing I learned about my self through this course was that I can write decently, that surprised me most. As well the amount of personal information I was able to share over the internet through the OFFA prompts this shocked me and caused me to reassess some of my values regarding sharing on the internet. All in all I think this has been a great experience for everyone involved.


I’m not sure there is a path I didn’t take that I regret. I know there have been lots of times where I have a decision to make and after I make my decision there’s that sense of regret, or uncertainty that it was the wrong choice. But from where I sit in life not I don’t regret any of them, or wish I picked the other path. I am content with who I am and where I am right now therefore there is no need to regret anything.

So instead I will tell you about what stands out in my mind as a moment where there  were two paths, and probably for the longest time after I still questioned my decision and sometimes regretted it.

When I was in grade 6 my catholic elementary school was being shut down, so for grade 7 everyone was being relocated. According to where you lived determined where you went. But the students a year older than us were going to be bussed no matter where they chose to go. The rest of us could choose but after that year we had to find our own transportation to and from school. Of course out of my  close knit group of friends I was the only one not being district off to the same school as them. I was faced with a few choices. I could go to that school for one year, hope maybe something could be worked for my last year in terms of transportation. I could also pick to just go to the school I was being sent to according to where I  lived, but very few people I knew were going there, and I didn’t know anyone there already. Also if I went to this school I would most likely have to go to a high school on the other end of town instead of the potential to meet back up with all my friends at the same high school in grade 9. But there was also one more option, one that the school wasn’t really presenting as a option. I could go to the public school that was next to my current school.

If I choose either of the last two options I would still not be with my friends. But a lot of other people from my school were going to go to the public school. Most of them guys but still I would know them. The other issue was since these two schools were so close we naturally became enemies in terms of snow ball fights and other childish things. This caused a lot of nervousness in my decision. Eventually I chose, I picked the public school, it made the most sense. I wouldn’t at any point be bussed, it was in the exact same location as my old school, so I could still walk home. And it was where the majority of my classmates were going.

So that’s what I did, I choose the option that was frowned upon by my old school, and by most of my friends parents. But I didn’t care, and im more than happy now that that was the decision I made. As with all changes it was hard at first but I adjusted and soon I came to appreiciate this school more than I did my old school.