Archive for March, 2019

Studying Survival: Why You Should Do Sleep

Tuesday, March 26th, 2019

In my junior year of high school, a brilliant yet dumb idea came over me. I would unlock the deepest, most evolutionarily repressed parts of my brain, and increase my academic performance immeasurably, by never, ever, sleeping. I made it four nights and five days before I started hollering at my cousin, who lives one thousand miles away, to stop scratching at my door at 3 in the morning. I discovered, then, that sleep may be more important than I thought.

In fact, I learned sleep isn’t just one state of mind or activity, either. It’s a cycle. There are three phases of sleep, four, if you count REM Sleep which is categorized on its own. Each subsequent phase is  “deeper” than the last.

Phase One

Most people call this “dozing off.” If you’ve ever partied all night and woken up early the next day for classes, then hit a snag in the middle of your 2 PM physics class where your head rocks back and forth, your eyes feel heavy as lead, and your sense of time gets distorted, you’ve experienced phase one. You are close to consciousness, but not quite fully there.

Phase Two

This is when you slip under, when you become truly unconscious. Here, your body loses its rigidity, and all your muscles relax. There’re myths about professional chefs being able to bake chocolate cakes while asleep, physiologically, they can’t. But, if you tapped them on the shoulder, they’d wake up and tell you the recipe for one without error.

Phase Three

This is known as “deep sleep.” Here, you are harder to wake up, and your brain releases fewer signals. The human brain at this time can almost be categorized as inactive, completely turned off. Here and there your body will tell your lungs to breathe and your heart to beat, but your frontal cortex, occipital lobe, hippocampus, and posterior cortex go almost silent.

Entering the REM stage

And then? Within the span of a couple of minutes, your brain comes to life during REM sleep. Neurotransmitters are flooding into the brain, with serotonin, epinephrine, and/or adrenaline bringing your brain to life. REM sleep is like the fan in your laptop pushed into overdrive as it clears out old junk and organizes all your files into folders. During REM sleep, your brain is like a city with all its lights turned on at once.

REM sleep happens roughly every 70 to 90 minutes. Your first REM cycle will last 10 minutes, your next one longer, and longer. After your REM cycles reach an hour or so in duration, it becomes almost impossible to fall back asleep. Your brain is sorted, and organized, and optimized, to its peak. Your body is healed, muscles strengthened, organs polished up. You are ready to go, performing at the highest level thanks to your brain and its natural reset button.

That is, of course, assuming you slept enough. Without enough REM sleep, you don’t retain memories as well. If you don’t get at least 3 to 4 full cycles, your brain will be messy and disorganized all day, as if caught in the middle of organizing its room, with half the trash on the bed and the other half swept under it. Maybe yesterday it knew where everything was. But now, when the chaos has been half-sorted, and half spread about, your brain won’t be able to find anything you need it to.

If you avoid sleep, your body will weaken, your organs more taxed and tired, and you will have higher levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, coursing through your veins. Without enough sleep, you are a ticking time bomb ready to explode. So next time, get your 7 hours, like the mom friend in your group tells you to, okay?

Additional Resources:

https://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/sleep/conditioninfo/rem-sleep
https://www.howsleepworks.com/how_neurological.html https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/files/docs/public/sleep/healthy_sleep_atglance.pdf


By Victor Galov

For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourage them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.

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How To Survive Studies: Get a Hobby, Get a Stress-Reliever

Tuesday, March 19th, 2019

I hum quietly, earplugs playing classic rock in one ear so I can hear the sizzle of carrots, mushrooms, and beef in my frying pan in the other. I sway side to side, watching the meat brown, and every now and then turn my attention to the pasta cooking on the other side of the stove, making sure not to overcook my dinner. I mouth the lyrics and close my eyes as a guitar solo comes on, allowing myself to forget about tomorrow’s midterm exam.

I never intended for my hobbies to become stress relievers or tools to help me stop procrastinating. I picked up cooking because I was broke and wanted to save on food while in Tokyo. I started playing guitar to start a band with my cousin in Canada, who was going through a tough breakup at the time. I’ve done Creative Writing since first grade, and DIY craftwork was a slippery slope when I fell down while trying to fix a broken zipper on my favorite jeans. But now? Those little activities have become some of the strongest supporting pillars of mental health and productivity in my life.

Whenever the studying concepts are too difficult or the reading too dense, I throw them aside and whip out the guitar. I’ve been playing for two months. I strum along to “Bad to the Bone” and “Ain’t No Sunshine,” and I miss most of the beats, mess up for 90% of the song, bite my bottom lip and growl in frustration sometimes. But then I reach the 10% of the song I can play properly, filling my chest with accomplishment, pride, and strength. If I can learn the guitar, I can learn the difference between longitudinal and transverse waves. I cook myself lasagna whenever the pre-test anxiety hits too hard, and my bacon mac-and-cheese has thus far impressed all my dates.

Hobbies improve our “self-concept,” give layers to your identity, according to Psychology Today.

They provide us not just relief from stress, but they make us more interesting, passionate, more active in pursuing things we want. They make us feel interesting, nuanced, they give us safety nets to fall back on, bastions of self-love.

Before? If I finished studying, I’d open Netflix or Youtube, drain hours into shows and videos. Now? I take out my guitar, or I stretch my fingers over an empty word document, imagining how I might fill it up. And I still have time for all my work, too. According to Parkinson’s Law, “Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.” So I cut forty minutes out of the six-hour block I gave myself to study. Then I come back to the table fed, entertained, happy, and well challenged.

If you want to improve your quality of life, if you want to be happier, more passionate and driven? Find a hobby, and get good at it.

 


By Victor Galov

For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourage them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.

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5 NYC Things To Do Outside For Spring Break

Tuesday, March 12th, 2019

Whether you’re seeing family or staying home in New York City, you’ll have plenty to do in New York City if you’re visiting or sticking around.

 

Walk Around Central Park

It’s a bit breezy this time of the season, but find a sunny day where you can take in the vastness of Central Park. NYU student and artist Solana Joan Suazo wrote about the beauty of Central Park here.

Go to the New York Public Library

Nothing like free reading and free books! Find your nearest NYPL location.

Go to the Museums

If you have a New York Public Library Card, you may get into museums for free. Time Out also recommends places like The Metropolitan Museum of Art or American Museum of Natural History.

Catch a student discount off-Broadway ticket

The TKTS booth on Time Square may have some deals if you come a few hours before showtime. The Theatre Development Fund also may have some desirable selections of productions, from Broadway to off-Broadway to off off Broadway.

Try a new place.

Go for Sushi or Ramen

Tired of your packaged 50 cent ramen? I recommend you try some high-quality ramen around NYC. At the Campus Clipper, we have many stellar student discount deals at places like Waza Sushi and Okinii.

 


By Caroline Cao

Carol is a queer Vietnamese-Houstonian Earthling surviving under the fickle weather of New York. When not angsting over her first poetry manuscript or a pilot screenplay about space samurais, Carol is cooking her own Chinese food instead of buying take-outs and dreaming of winning Hamilton lotto tickets. She runs writing and scripting services, and lends her voice to SlashFilm, Birth Movies DeathThe Mary SueFilm School Rejectsand The Script Lab. She’s also lurking in the shadows waiting for you to follow her on Twitter or Instagram.

For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourage them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.

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How To Deal With Back to School Migraines

Tuesday, March 5th, 2019

Some of y’all get headaches in the school. For me, the sting in my head is stress-induced. When school comes around, it increases my migraines. As an introvert, I frequently suffer in silence in my room as I finish my homework.

Here are 5 things I do to alleviate my migraines or distract from them.

Drink Chamomile Tea

Ah, Lipton tea eases the stinging in my head.

Watch TV

I watch my daily Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. As a big animation fan, I like to watch The Dragon Prince and Hilda. You might be a fan of Marvel, so try Daredevil or Jessica Jones. Heck, maybe try something new like One Day At A Time.

Catch a Film

On my Moviepass (a 3-movie-a-month deal as I speak), I use it to afford some movie tickets, though it doesn’t always work. Check with your nearest NYC theater if they have a special affordable membership.

Draw something

Yes, even squiqqles can help. In fact, I whipped up some pastel drawings. Look at my affinity for colorful sea lumps and stick figures.

Make sure you get some studying done.

 

 


By Caroline Cao

Carol is a queer Vietnamese-Houstonian Earthling surviving under the fickle weather of New York. When not angsting over her first poetry manuscript or a pilot screenplay about space samurais, Carol is cooking her own Chinese food instead of buying take-outs and dreaming of winning Hamilton lotto tickets. She runs writing and scripting services, and lends her voice to SlashFilm, Birth Movies DeathThe Mary SueFilm School Rejectsand The Script Lab. She’s also lurking in the shadows waiting for you to follow her on Twitter or Instagram.

For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourage them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.

 

Share